Fifteen million pounds of emergency funding has already been paid into business accounts across the borough.
The council-funded scheme is helping businesses tide over until government cash and support schemes kick in. Today, council leader Peter John sought to reassure sectors left panicked by the COVID-19 outbreak.
“I am immensely proud, not just of our active voluntary sector who have already put their hat in the ring to help at every opportunity during this crisis, but also of the resilience of our local businesses,” he told the News on Tuesday.
“Their dynamism and agile approach to the public health requirements has been phenomenal, with many businesses quickly adapting to new ways of trading in order to keep the local economy going, and ensure residents continue to receive the essential goods they need.
“But there are many more businesses in Southwark who are either really struggling, or have had to cease to trade, and these are the ones at the forefront of my mind as the situation develops.
“We aim to do all that we can to administer the government support where it is our role to do so, offer our own support – both financial and practical, and work with the expertise of the voluntary sector in order for Southwark’s businesses and residents to continue to thrive as this economic storm hits us.”
There are cash grants of £10,000 for small businesses receiving small business rate relief. Grants for retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with a rateable value of under £15,000 can receive cash grants for £10,000 per property, while those with a rateable value between £15,001 to £51,000 can receive up £25,000.
The council is also hoping to bring in more support through a hardship fund set for those ineligible for government-backed support.
Small businesses owners should email email@example.com for more information.
Food boxes for ‘shielded’ residents
From this week onwards Southwark Council will be able to make 250 deliveries of essential food supplies to the most residents shielding themselves from COVID-19.
Already, 152 food parcels have already been dropped off to those in greatest need, with 50 more sent to partner organisations for delivery.
The supplies – for clinically vulnerable groups identified at most risk – are being coordinated with the borough’s food banks, Community Southwark, Pembroke House, Age UK and various tenant and resident organisations.