Support for Business

Coronavirus (COVID-19) - support for business

Guidance on the NHS test and trace service for employers, businesses and workers:

NHS test and trace: workplace guidance


Business Representative Organisations and Trade Associations are providing coronavirus related support for specific sectors. You can read more here

The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will remain open until the end of October. In a boost to millions of jobs and businesses, Rishi Sunak said the furlough scheme would be extended by a further four months with workers continuing to receive 80% of their current salary.

Businesses have the flexibility to bring furloughed employees back to work part time from 1 July as part of the government’s plan to re-open the UK and kick-start our economy.

Previously, the Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19.

The package includes measures to support businesses including:

  • a statutory sick pay relief package for SMEs
  • a 12-month business rates holiday for all retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in England
  • small business grant funding of £10,000 for all business in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief
  • grant funding of £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses with property with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
  • 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

The Government has announced a new scheme for those in need of smaller loans. Businesses can apply for the new Bounce Back Loans up to a maximum of £50,000, or 25% of turnover, with the government paying the interest for the first 12 months.  The loans will be available from 9am on Monday and the Government will support lending by guaranteeing 100% of the loan.

For more details, please visit this link:  

To learn more about how to access the various financial support schemes, please see the link here:

There is a BEIS Business Support Helpline for any queries: 0300 456 3565

Watch videos and register for the free webinars to learn more about the support available to help you deal with the economic impacts of coronavirus here

Safety in the Workplace

The government, in consultation with industry, has produced guidance to help ensure workplaces are as safe as possible.

These 8 guides cover a range of different types of work and can be accessed here:


Updated 2nd July 2020



Moving On and Masking Up

Let me begin this week by congratulating all those A Level and BTEC students from Brentwood and Ongar who go the results they needed to get into the University, college or apprenticeship they wanted.

Squeezing The Brake

In the last month my articles for the Brentwood Gazette have been celebrating the gradual easing of lockdown restrictions, allowing those who have been furloughed to get back to work and those families who have been kept apart to get together again.

Progress with Caution

Four months after the formal start of the lockdown designed to stop the exponential growth of the spread of COVID-19 and to stop the NHS being overwhelmed by people needing intensive respiratory care, the country is making progress - progress with caution, but progress nonetheless. 

Shaping Up for Summer

Each week I am able to report in this column further steps in the Government’s roadmap to gradually reopen businesses and community facilities which had to close during the long, hot, weeks of total lockdown.

Go Out And Spend

Each week I am able to report in this column further steps in the Government’s roadmap to gradually reopen businesses and community facilities which had to close during the long, hot, weeks of total lockdown.

Face Coverings in Shops

Wearing a face covering will become mandatory in shops and supermarkets in England from 24 July, as we continue to control the virus and save lives. 

News Release: Alex Backs 'Eat Out to Help Out'

Chancellor Rishi Sunak has provided a much-needed boost for tourism and hospitality businesses in Brentwood and Ongar, as part of his Summer Economic Update to kickstart the economy post-coronavirus.