Support Tips For Businesses During Lockdown

Wednesday, April 29th, 2020

If you are business in Dorchester looking for support during the coronavirus crisis, there are a number of new tools available to help. Recently launched initiatives from the Government, National Lottery and local councils offer various levels of financial support.

Here are a few tips your business may be able to take advantage of in these challenging times…

Business Financial Support

The Government has launched a new online tool to provide information about financial support for businesses during the COVID-19 Pandemic. Answer a series of questions to find out what level of support is available for your business.

Find out more: www.gov.uk/business-coronavirus-support-finder

Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) is now open for applications from businesses to check if you can claim for your employee’s wages.

Using the online tool, you can use a calculator to work out much you can claim. Alternatively, employees can check if their employer is eligible for the scheme. There are also options to use webchat or phone to get more information about your claim.

Make a claim here: www.gov.uk/government/organisations/hm-revenue-customs/contact/get-help-with-the-coronavirus-job-retention-scheme

National Lottery Emergency Fund

The National Lottery are providing a package of support for the heritage sector during the crisis. The Heritage Emergency Fund is open for applications until 30 June 2020.

Not-for-profit organisations, current or previous recipients of a grant from the National Lottery and heritage activity owners are able to apply.

More information: www.heritagefund.org.uk/funding/heritage-emergency-fund

IT Support for your business

A helpline set up by Dorset Council is now available from 10am to midday on weekdays to provide IT support. You might want to use this for guidance on setting up remote working for staff or for help with video conferencing.

Call the support team on: 01305 221000.

Financial support to pay council tax

If your circumstances have recently changed and you are struggling to pay your council tax you can contact the local council. Citizens Advice, Turn2Us and Money Advice Service will support to if anything can be done to help.

Find out more here: www.dorsetcouncil.gov.uk/emergencies-severe-weather/emergencies/coronavirus/benefits-employment-and-financial-support.aspx

Free business mentoring support

Dorset Business Mentors (previously DorMen) are offering support for Dorset businesses and charities during the COVID-19 pandemic. The free business support service is being offered for up to 3 months, for immediate and ongoing expert advice to help deal with the situation.

This is a confidential service open to all micro, small and medium sized businesses. Read more: dorsetbusinessmentors.uk/business-resilience

Share your social media posts with Dorchester BID

We would love to support and share your Dorchester-based business updates on our social media channels. To help bring your business story to our attention please make sure you tag us on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. This helps us to see the post and lets us know you want us to share it to expand your reach.

To tag just add @Dorchester, Thomas Hardy Country for Facebook, @DorchesterBID for Twitter or @discoverdorchester for Instagram.

Facebook – www.facebook.com/visitdorchester
Twitter – www.twitter.com/DorchesterBID
Instagram – www.instagram.com/discoverdorchester

Contact our support page

To support Dorchester town centre businesses we are keeping a regularly updated list. This includes businesses offering home delivery, click and collect options as well as links to community groups.

Use the contact form to send a new update on home delivery services: dorchesterdorset.com/covid-19

Dorchester Coronavirus Community Support Group have been working alongside Dorchester Town Council to produce a very comprehensive list of shopping and delivery options available to Dorchester residents. A small number of printed copies are available for people who are not online.

A new website has been built based on the original list: https://dorchester.services

For useful support and resources in Dorset see: https://www.helpandkindness.co.uk/search/dorset/coronavirus

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