Thursday, October 22, 2020

Additional financial support revealed for Leicester businesses affected by local lockdown

The Government has confirmed businesses in Leicester and the surrounding area will receive £3m in additional support.

Health Secretary Matt Hancock has written to local MPs saying the funds have been made available for businesses in the areas affected by the localised lockdown that was imposed on 29 June.

It will help them deal with the extra pressures resulting from the stricter restrictions – which included closing non-essential shops, and preventing hospitality venues and hairdressers from reopening as they did in other parts of the UK.

The support package has been split into £2.6m for distribution via Leicester City Council and £400,000 for businesses in the area controlled by Oadby and Wigston Borough Council.

The Government’s intervention follows lobbying from East Midlands Chamber, MPs and other organisations.

Scott Knowles, Chief Executive of East Midlands Chamber, said: “We have been calling for the Government to provide additional, tailored financial support to businesses in the Leicester area affected by the local lockdown for the past month, so today’s confirmation provides an injection of positivity that has been desperately needed.

“The funding package should offer some short-term respite for those businesses that have been forced to endure a hugely difficult period, remaining closed as they have watched on while the rest of the country reopens.

“While welcome, this is a short-term sticking plaster and Leicester now really needs to hear what the Government’s exit strategy will be to get the city, along with Oadby and Wigston, out of lockdown.”

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