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The Chancellor. Rishi Sunak, has announced that additional support will be available for businesses that have been impacted by the Omicron variant.

  • Businesses in the hospitality and leisure sectors in England will be eligible for one-off grants of up to £6,000 per premises, plus more than £100 million discretionary funding will be made available for local authorities to support other businesses
  • Government will also cover the cost of Statutory Sick Pay for Covid-related absences for small and medium-sized employers across the UK
  • £30 million further funding will be made available through the Culture Recovery Fund, enabling more cultural organisations in England to apply for support during the winter

Full details of the announcement can be found at



November 2021

Go Trade partners in England and France support local markets through Covid and preparations for Chrismas


Towns across England and France have been supporting their market traders to connect back with the customers after COVID-19 health and safety measures impacted footfall, with the support of the Go Trade project.

The recently extended project is funded with €3.8 million from the EU-funded Interreg France (Channel) England Programme, with additional support coming from local partners.

With Christmas fast approaching, many member towns are putting on additional festive events to boost visitor numbers in the winter months.

In England, Great Yarmouth is staging three special Christmas in The Parks events, with temporary markets offering gifts for sale and festive food and drink, alongside free live entertainment from local musicians, horse-drawn carriage rides, and a free land train between event sites.

The town is also continuing with its £4.6m investment to revamp its permanent six-day market, which will include more energy-efficient stalls, covered seating areas, and space for pop-up traders and events.

Basildon Market and Wickford Market are building on the great reception in the summer for their Go Trade Summer Fun Days. People of all ages were able to enjoy various activities as Covid-19 restrictions eased. The borough has been busy preparing Christmas celebrations, including two weekeneds of fun-filled activities including the return of an annual street fayre, food stalls, fireworks, a parade, musical guests, Santa’s grotto, and Christmas lights. Following the cancellation of many events last year due to COVID-19, organisers are hoping to enjoy the festivities all together again in the borough.

For Christmas and into the new year, Basildon Council has also secured the extension of the ShopAppy click and collect service, which all market traders and businesses across the whole borough can trial for free until March 2022. It is a great opportunity for businesses to expand their online presence and it gives the public a chance to support their local businesses in a click in the period leading up to Christmas.

In Gravesend Borough Market, traders are seeing a return to more normal trading conditions with customers returning to regular markets, in addition to a full programme of activities and events to continue drawing footfall. A number of events and workshops are being delivered through the Go Trade funding including evening Christmas markets, table decoration and wreath making workshops.

The team have also been busy rebooking Go Trade events including the model railway market and Chilli Festival, which had to be postponed due to Covid.

In France, the Pays de Lumbres traders reacted to the need to stay close to home because of Covid restrictions by launching five new, local, weekly markets. With the support of the Pays de Lumbres Community of Municipalities as part of the Go Trade program, these made it possible for people to consume locally and to promote the activity of local producers, artisans and traders.

The support of the Go Trade programme of investments, activities and communication in these new markets has encouraged their progress and they now seem to be established on a long-term basis but the organisers say that winter, which combines an expected drop in market attendance due to weather conditions, and the end of the GO TRADE program, will be a decisive period in confirming the sustainability of these new markets.

In Caen, the focus has been on consolidating on previous activity as part of Go Trade, with a “Novembre Gourmand” press reception for the British media. This will focus on promotion of the area from gourmet perspective and via its markets, but with a focus on the international market rather than domestic French media.

Go Trade is funded with €3.8 million from the EU-funded Interreg France (Channel) England Programme, with additional support coming from local partners. Go Trade stands for Growth of the Visitor Economy through Traditional Markets, Employment and Skills.

The scheme started in late 2017 and will conclude in 2022. Facebook: @GoTradeMarkets2019 Instagram: @gotrademarkets Twitter: @GoTrade_Markets #GoTrade

Covid Roadmap Delay – 14.6.21


PM statement at coronavirus press conference: 14 June 2021

Prime Minister Boris Johnson made a statement at the coronavirus press conference.

The following is copied verbatim from the website –


“When we set out on our roadmap to freedom a few months ago, we were determined to make progress that was cautious but irreversible. And step by step – thanks to the enormous efforts of the British people and the spectacular vaccine roll-out we now have one of the most open economies and societies in this part of the world.

And as we have always known and as the February roadmap explicitly predicted – this opening up has inevitably been accompanied by more infection and more hospitalisation. Because we must be clear that we cannot simply eliminate Covid – we must learn to live with it. And with every day that goes by we are better protected by the vaccines and we are better able to live with the disease.

Vaccination greatly reduces transmission and two doses provide a very high degree of protection against serious illness and death. But there are still millions of younger adults who have not been vaccinated and sadly a proportion of the elderly and vulnerable may still succumb even if they have had two jabs.

And that is why we are so concerned by the Delta variant that is now spreading faster than the third wave predicted in the February roadmap. We’re seeing cases growing by about 64 per cent per week, and in the worst affected areas, it’s doubling every week. And the average number of people being admitted to hospital in England has increased by 50 per cent week on week, and by 61 per cent in the North West, which may be the shape of things to come. Because we know the remorseless logic of exponential growth and even if the link between infection and hospitalisation has been weakened it has not been severed.

And even if the link between hospitalisation and death has also been weakened, I’m afraid numbers in intensive care, in ICU are also rising. And so we have faced a very difficult choice. We can simply keep going with all of step 4 on June 21st even though there is a real possibility that the virus will outrun the vaccines and that thousands more deaths would ensue that could otherwise have been avoided.

Or else we can give our NHS a few more crucial weeks to get those remaining jabs into the arms of those who need them. And since today I cannot say that we have met all four tests for proceeding with step four, I do think it is sensible to wait just a little longer.

By Monday 19th July we will aim to have double jabbed around two thirds of the adult population including everyone over 50, all the vulnerable, all the frontline health and care workers and everyone over 40 who received their first dose by mid-May. And to do this we will now accelerate the 2nd jabs for those over 40 – just as we did for the vulnerable groups – so they get maximum protection as fast as possible.

And we will bring forward our target to give every adult in this country a first dose by 19th July that is including young people over the age of 18 with 23 and 24 year olds invited to book jabs from tomorrow – so we reduce the risk of transmission among groups that mix the most. And to give the NHS that extra time we will hold off step 4 openings until July 19th except for weddings that can still go ahead with more than 30 guests provided social distancing remains in place and the same will apply to wakes. And we will continue the pilot events – such as Euro2020 and some theatrical performances. We will monitor the position every day and if after 2 weeks we have concluded that the risk has diminished then we reserve the possibility of proceeding to Step 4 and full opening sooner.

As things stand – and on the basis of the evidence I can see right now – I am confident we will not need any more than 4 weeks and we won’t need to go beyond July 19th. It is unmistakably clear the vaccines are working and the sheer scale of the vaccine roll-out has made our position incomparably better than in previous waves.

But now is the time to ease off the accelerator because by being cautious now we have the chance – in the next four weeks – to save many thousands of lives by vaccinating millions more people. And once the adults of this country have been overwhelmingly vaccinated, which is what we can achieve in a short space of time, we will be in a far stronger position to keep hospitalisations down, to live with this disease, and to complete our cautious but irreversible roadmap to freedom.”

Published 14 June 2021

2021 Budget – How it affects businesses


Budget 2021 sets path for recovery

In a Budget which ‘meets the moment’, the Chancellor has today (3 March) set out a £65 billion three-point plan to provide support for jobs and businesses as we emerge from the pandemic and forge a path to recovery.


To protect the livelihoods of those hardest hit, the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme will be extended to September and the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will continue with a fourth and a fifth grant. The Chancellor announced that more than 600,000 people, many of whom became self-employed in 2019-20, may now be able to claim direct cash grants under SEISS.

Business Rates

In addition, the business rates holiday in England has been extended by an additional three months. That means 750,000 retail, hospitality and leisure properties in England will pay no business rates for three months from 1 April when combined with Small Business Rates Relief, with further relief available for the rest of the year.


To continue supporting the 150,000 businesses in the tourism and hospitality sectors and to protect 2.4 million jobs, the government has extended the temporary 5% reduced rate of VAT until 30 September 2021. To help businesses manage the transition back to the standard rate, a 12.5% rate will then apply for a further six months, until 31 March 2022.

Grant Funding

Grant funding will be available to businesses in England through a new £5 billion Restart Grant scheme to help the high street, providing up to £18,000, bringing the total spent on business grants to £25 billion.

Recovery Loans

A new Recovery Loan Scheme will also be launched to replace the existing government guaranteed schemes which have supported £73 billion of lending to date and close at the end of March.


As part of the UK Government’s Plan for Jobs to support, protect and create jobs, the Chancellor is increasing support with £126 million of new money to enable 40,000 more traineeships, and doubling the cash incentive to firms who take on an apprentice to a £3,000 payment per hire.

National Living Wage

The National Living Wage will be increased to £8.91 from April and there will also be a six-month extension of the £20 per week Universal Credit uplift, with eligible Working Tax Credit claimants receiving a one-off payment of £500.


To put more money in the public’s pocket, fuel duty will be frozen for the 11th consecutive year and there will be a freeze in duty rates for beer, cider, wine and spirits.

To balance the need to raise revenue with the objective of having an internationally competitive tax system, the rate of Corporation Tax will increase to 25%, which will remain the lowest rate in the G7. In order to support the recovery, the increase will not take effect until 2023. Businesses with profits of £50,000 or less, around 70% of actively trading companies, will continue to be taxed at 19%. A tapered rate will also be introduced for profits above £50,000, so that only businesses with profits of £250,000 or greater will be taxed at the full 25% rate.

An investment-led recovery

The Budget will spread investment and opportunity across the UK, helping businesses to grow, and improving access to skills, capital and ideas.

New English Freeports will be based in East Midlands Airport, Felixstowe & Harwich, Humber, Liverpool City Region, Plymouth, Solent, Thames and Teesside and will be special economic zones with different rules to make it easier and cheaper to do business. Combined with changes to immigration rules, the Towns Fund, the UK-wide Levelling Up Fund, and the UK Community Renewal Fund, opportunities for well-paid jobs, innovation and growth will be leveled up across the country.

The Budget also coincides with the publication of the the government’s new Build Back Better: our plan for growth strategy, setting out how infrastructure, skills and innovation will drive the UK economy.

130,000 small and medium sized businesses will be supported through the new Help to Grow scheme, providing the digital and management tools needed to innovate, grow and help drive recovery.

Beginning April 2021, a new super-deduction will cut companies’ tax bill by 25p for every pound they invest in new equipment meaning they can reduce their taxable profits by 130% of the cost. This is worth £25 billion to companies over the two-year period the super-deduction will be in full effect.


You can view the full details at the government’s website by clicking the following link –

Government announces roadmap to leave lockdown


Roadmap out of lockdown

Press release copied directly from on 23/02/2021

From 8 March, people in England will see restrictions start to lift and the government’s four-step roadmap offer a route back to a more normal life.

Chancellor announces ‘lockdown’ business grants


£4.6 billion in new lockdown grants to support businesses and protect jobs

Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors are to receive a one-off grant worth up to £9,000, the Chancellor has announced.

England’s 3rd National ‘Lockdown’


On Monday, Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a 3rd ‘lockdown’ for England, beginning on the following day, Tuesday 6th January 2021.

Great Yarmouth (& Norfolk) placed into Tier 4 restrictions (26.12.20)


Please click on the following “Read More” link for details on how this may affect you, local businesses and local public services.

The information below is correct at time of writing – 29.12.2020, check the Tier 4 web-page  for any further guidance.

Borough council has £13.7m offered for town centre regeneration


Great Yarmouth Borough Council has secured an offer of £13.7m investment from the Government’s Future High Streets Fund towards its vision to transform and revive Great Yarmouth town centre as a vibrant economic, cultural and community hub.

Go Trade project aims to to boost support for local markets


Known as Go Trade, the scheme aims to support the footfall and offer at nine traditional markets in England and France, with 16 project partners working together, along with market traders and other town centre businesses, to develop and implement the activities as part of supporting town centres and visitor economies.

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