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West Berkshire Council announces funding boost for businesses

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WEST Berkshire Council has announced a boost to funding as local businesses welcome back customers after the latest easing of coronavirus restrictions.

The council has said that businesses across the district can apply for its ‘Welcome Back Business Grant’ which provides a one-off payment of up to £10,000 to implement temporary changes to welcome additional visitors and encourage more footfall into independent small and medium sized businesses.

The district council has made this extra funding available to complement the Government’s Welcome Back Fund, which does not permit direct grants to businesses.

West Berkshire Council offices. (47666839)
West Berkshire Council offices. (47666839)

Between £1,000 and £10,000 is available per business from a pot of £140,000 provided via match funding. Businesses can pool their funding allocation by making a joint application for one joint project.

Executive member for finance and economic development at the council, Ross Mackinnon (Con, Bradfield), said: “The Government’s roadmap to recovery is progressing for us all to go back to some sense of normality and we want to show our support to local businesses as they re-open.

“This grant will help drive footfall to our smaller businesses in the high streets and shopping areas which is very much needed at this moment in time in order for our local economy to continue to thrive.

“Although the grants only allow for temporary measures to be implemented, I am looking forward to seeing how eligible businesses will be creative with the funding available to them for a successful summer re-opening.”

Applications are now open and will close on June 21 and reviews by a judging panel will be completed by July 2 to determine if your business has been successful in securing the grant.

Payment of the grant will be given after the changes have been implemented with proof of spend provided.

Further details and the application form are available on the council website at https://info.westberks.gov.uk/welcome-back-business-grants.

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