Wed, 08 Apr 2020
WEST Berkshire Council has joined a taskforce to help local businesses struggling with the impact of coronavirus.
The project was established by Thames Valley Berkshire Local Enterprise Partnership (TVBLEP) in recognition of the significant concern and disruption being caused to businesses of all sizes now and for the foreseeable future as a result of the Covid-19 emergency.
The taskforce includes key stakeholders including the Thames Valley Berkshire Business Growth Hub, Thames Valley Chambers of Commerce, Federation of Small Businesses, Institute of Directors, Confederation of British Industry and the six Berkshire local authorities.
It will be used to ensure businesses in Berkshire are kept up to date with developments, have access to finance available and are provided with as much support as possible.
TVBLEP is also working with the Southern Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEPs) and London LEP in sharing best practice and intelligence.
The Business Growth Hub will also continue to work with partners across the LEP area to provide guidance and support via a daily updated service on its website.
TVBLEP chief executive Alison Webster said: “At a time where difficult decisions are having to be made, it is more important than ever to work together and be a collective voice.
"As a business-led partnership, which brings together both private and public sector organisations, we want to work with you to help our area respond.
"Businesses are hearing from Government about the help available to them, but we want to ensure, at a local level, that everyone has access to the information which applies to them and that the process of acquiring that help is as straightforward and streamlined as possible.
"To feedback your business' needs and give your views please email the Business Growth Hub at email@example.com
“We have launched our Business in Berkshire 2019 report which provides a comprehensive evidence base for all those involved in supporting local businesses.
"It will provide us with a good baseline of our local economy before we entered uncharted territory; help us revive the Berkshire economy; identify how it has recovered; and give us insights as to what we can do to ensure we remain the most productive sub region (outside of London).”
West Berkshire Council leader Lynne Doherty (Con, Newbury Speen) – pictured – said: “We’re pleased to be contributing to this taskfforce as we seek to minimise the impact of Covid-19 on the local economy.
“Now more than ever, working together is going to be important as we put support in place to help our businesses. Our relationship with the LEP and the Growth Hub has always been part of the reason why West Berkshire continues to punch above its weight.”
She added: “West Berkshire’s local economy has long been recognised as one of the strongest and most resilient in the UK.
"We look forward to contributing to this vital work throughout this period and beyond on behalf of every one of West Berkshire’s 9,000 businesses.”