Newcastle City Council is advising SMEs that they have until 15 July to apply for business support grants of £5,000.
The council is closing the first round of funding applications for a £3 million discretionary fund, aimed at businesses who fell outside the scope of previous government grants.
Launched on the 5 June, 300 businesses including B&Bs, market traders, people in shared workspaces and charities have benefited from grants worth £1.5 million.
The council is urging all eligible businesses to complete the online form at www.newcastle.gov.uk/covibusinesssupport before the noon deadline on Wednesday (15 July) for this first round of funding.
The remaining funds will then be used for a second round, with a new eligibility criterion, which the council will announce soon, to provide further support for Newcastle businesses.
Cllr Ged Bell, cabinet member for Employment & Culture at Newcastle City Council said: “These are difficult and challenging times for small businesses, and we would urge all SMEs to check eligibility to get a much-needed cash injection into their bank accounts now.
“The allocation of this funding has been quite challenging due to rigid parameters set by government, and once this round is closed, we will develop a new scheme for the remaining monies to get support to many other sectors and businesses who have missed out on previous schemes.
“These are challenging times for SMEs, but Newcastle City Council is committed to getting vital funds to local businesses as fast as we can, to support our local economy and drive forward Newcastle’s economic recovery.”
The discretionary fund is to help businesses who were not eligible for the Small Business Grants or the retail, hospitality and leisure grants, who received grants of £10,000 or £25,000 which has helped over 4,500 local businesses with funds of £57 million.
Businesses have until noon on 15 July to complete an online application, with payments of £5,000 made to eligible businesses within ten working days. The council will then review all applications, with time built in for requesting further information or supporting evidence, and process payments.
The new fund will open before the end of July, with full eligibility criteria published in advance.
The council is working closely with a range of partners, including NE1 and NGI. Together they will support businesses across the city, proactively reaching out to eligible companies, signposting and gathering intelligence to help inform potential new packages where gaps are identified.
Advice for businesses is available at: www.newcastle.gov.uk/covidbusinesssupport