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Bounce Back Better Campaign

 

Love Wimbledon is proud to support a campaign launched by Croydon BID “Bounce Back Better”, an extension of the Raise The Bar campaign, in order to call on the government to provide more support to retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in 2021/2022.

The campaign manifesto covers 4 main asks:

  1. One-off grant for retail, hospitality & leisure businesses
    Local Authorities lack the administrative and payments infrastructure required to facilitate a monthly financial support model proposed by government for eligible businesses in Tier 2 and Tier 3 – many businesses are receiving funds too late, or worse not at all. We ask Government to provide a one-off ‘Bounce Back’ grant of up to £15,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses in Tier 2 and Tier 3 across England and Wales with a rateable value of up to and including £150,000. This would give 137,000 businesses vital funds delivered in a manner Local Authorities are equipped to distribute at a total maximum cost of £2.05bn
  2. Pause national insurance contributions for furloughed employees
    For the furlough scheme investment to date of £47m to be fully effective, business support must reflect short and long term challenges. While employees receive 80% of their salary through the extension of the furlough scheme, businesses are still paying out for National Insurance, placing greater strain on survival. We ask Government to remove the burden of National Insurance from employers whose staff are on furlough, saving the average business £2,000 per month until the end of March 2021.
  3. Extension of 100% business rates holiday for 2021/22
    The ‘payment holiday’ for hospitality, leisure and leisure businesses with a rateable value less than £51,000 earlier this year was an extraordinary and critical measure saving each business up to £25,000, a total tax cut worth over £1bn. We ask Government to extend the 100% business rates holiday into 2021/2022 for businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors. Every pound saved is a pound to help businesses stay trading and retain staff.
  4. Extension of VAT reduction scheme
    The cut in VAT from 20% to 5% is a major boost for the hospitality sector enabling businesses to pass on a £4.1 billion saving onto consumers. With a vaccine becoming a reality in the coming months, our Bed and Breakfasts, hotels and restaurants could be a vital catalyst to local economic recovery. Research by CGA for UKHospitality, the British Beer and Pub Association and the British Institute of Innkeeping found support on VAT and business rates are top of hospitality’s essential business support needs. We ask government to extend the VAT reduction to 5% for Hospitality from 1 April 2021 up to and including 31st March 2022.

To support retail, hospitality and leisure sectors – the beating heart of our economy, sign the petition here.

For more details visit the campaign website.

Businesses Asking the Questions

Ahead of the General Election, Labour and Conservative politicians wanted to engage with businesses and provide a platform for local businesses to get their voices heard. We were pleased to be able to provide this opportunity for local businesses to meet the Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, John McDonnell, and the current Chancellor of the Exchequer, Sajid Javid.

 

In an effort to get the business voices of Wimbledon heard, Rt Hon Sajid Javid recently visited the town, providing a platform for local businesses to question the current Chancellor of the Exchequer. Topics covered included infrastructure projects, employment and business tax. Naturally, mention of Brexit was also raised on several occasions. A range of businesses attended from retail to accountancy, the built environment to tech, enabling a discussion of the challenges that face different businesses in the area, both now and in the future.

In order to ensure a bright future for Wimbledon, Love Wimbledon lobby on a range of policies that could influence Wimbledon Town Centre, including Crossrail2 and Business Rates. This gave us the opportunity to wave the Wimbledon flag and that of our business community.

With the help of Love Wimbledon, Labour politician and Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer, John McDonnell, also met with Wimbledon businesses.

A variety of small to medium businesses attended from different sectors and discussed issues around the broadband strategy, the future for the construction industry, employment issues, access to finance and land value tax to replace business rates.

Love Wimbledon BID is very keen to help our businesses to have their voice heard at strategic forums on the key issues affecting them, whilst also keeping Wimbledon town centre highlighted as a strong and attractive business base.

 

Merton Business Rates Consultation

Helen Clark Bell attended the annual Business Rates Consultation at Merton Council, well attended by business representative groups from around Merton.

Merton Council announced that Business Rates for 2019/20 will be increasing by 2.2% as set by central government. In 2018/19 Merton Council collected £92million in business rates, 64% of which was retained to fund local council services. Merton Council will be automatically applying the 100% relief for Small Business Rate Relief, the transitional rate relief from the last revaluation and the 30% retail business rate reduction if your shop has a rateable value of less than £51,000. If you are eligible and this has not been automatically applied then please do contact Merton Council to discuss this.

There are a number of support schemes that Merton Council provide for businesses that may be struggling to pay their business rates and you are encouraged to speak to the council rates department directly if this applies. There are also local discount schemes for new businesses, empty properties and expanding businesses.

For more information https://www.merton.gov.uk/business-and-consumers/business-rates