COVID-19 Business Rates Support for 2020/21

Government Announcements - Last Updated: March 26, 2020

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has announced several measures aimed at supporting businesses during the current COVID-19 outbreak.

We are awaiting detailed guidance on the full eligibility criteria and administration for each of the measures announced. This page will be regularly updated as criteria is published. Please also refer to the Frequently Asked Questions here.

The following measures in relation to business rates and small business grant funding are expected to be administered by the Council.


Small Business Grant Funding

As part of its response to the Coronavirus the Government has announced there will be support for small businesses, and businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. This support will take the form of two grant funding schemes, the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund.


Small Business Grant Fund

Properties with a rateable value of up to £15,000 and which were in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief on March 11 2020, are eligible for a grant of £10,000.

Properties that were eligible for Rural Rate Relief on March 11, 2020 will also be eligible for this grant.

Eligible recipients will receive one grant per property.


Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund

Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Properties which on March 11, 2020 had a rateable value between £0 and  £50,999 are eligible for this grant as follows:

  • Properties with a rateable value of £0 to £15,000 will receive a grant of £10,000 unless they have already qualified for the Small Business Grant Fund.       
  • Properties with a rateable of £15,001 to £50,999 will receive a grant of £25,000.


Sefton Council Business Rates Team will shortly be issuing a letter to businesses in the borough who are eligible for the small business grant fund and retail, hospitality and leisure grant fund.

A copy of the letter, further guidance regarding eligibility and an online portal for businesses to enter information that you must provide for the grant to be issued to your business are available below.


Use online portal here

Covid-19 and Business Support Grants: letter to businesses (word 23KB)
Covid-19 and Business Support Grants: further guidance (word 30KB)
COVID-19 and Business Support Grants: FAQs for businesses (word 33KB)
Covid-19 Business Rates Holiday 100 Relief Eligibility (word 43KB)


Business Rates Holiday

There will be a 12 months Business Rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England. A 100% discount will be applied to your bill from April 1, 2020. The detailed eligibility criteria has been published and is available here. You will not be required to apply.

Eligibility for the discount will also be applied for non-local authority childcare providers.


Additional Announcements

The Chancellor announced a number of other measures as part of his package of support:

  • The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme;
  • Deferring VAT and Income Tax payments;
  • Statutory Sick Pay relief package for SMEs;
  • The Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme offering loans of up to £5 million for SMEs through the British Business Bank;
  • A new lending facility from the Bank of England to help support liquidity among larger firms, helping them bridge coronavirus disruption to their cash flows through loans;
  • The HMRC Time To Pay Scheme.

Further details can be found at:

The Invest Sefton website

The Government website 

Last Updated on 27 March 2020