Southport BID is urging people to support local businesses as new national lockdown rules come into force.
Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced a range of tough new restrictions on Monday (4 January) in a bid to reverse the recent rise in Covid-19 cases. They are expected to last until February Half Term at least.
Southport BID CEO Rachel Fitzgerald is advising people that many businesses in Southport still remain open, with others changing how they operate over the next few weeks.
She said: “Everyone is united in our desire to do all we can to reduce the number of Covid-19 cases while the vaccination programme is rolled out.
“We are facing a very tough few weeks ahead but we hope to be able to emerge strongly in a few weeks’ time.
“In the meantime, there are many local businesses in Southport which remain open with a wide range of Covid safe measures in place. These include essential retailers, such as food shops, supermarkets, garden centres, pharmacies and others.
“Other businesses such as restaurants, cafes, bars and non-essential retail cannot allow customers into their premises over the next few weeks but can offer services such as click-and-collect, takeaway or home delivery.
“Supporting our local businesses in Southport this year is vital and I would encourage everyone to use them as much as you can.”
Chancellor Rishi Sunak today announced one-off, top-up grants for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property to help businesses through to the Spring.
A £594 million discretionary fund also aims to support other impacted businesses.
Rachel Fitzgerald said: “I would urge local business owners to apply for any financial support as soon as it becomes available.
“As more details emerge we will share these through our Southport BID social media channels.”
Businesses which can remain open as the new national Covid lockdown begins includes estate agents, with people still able to move house.
They also include essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets and pharmacies.
Garden centres were ordered to close during the last lockdown, but can remain open this time. Hospitality venues such as cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs have to close, however they are able to provide food and non-alcoholic drinks for takeaway (until 11pm), click-and-collect and drive-through. All food and drink (including alcohol) can continue to be provided by delivery.
Non-essential shops, such as clothing and homeware stores, vehicle showrooms (other than for rental), betting shops, tailors, tobacco and vape shops, electronic goods and mobile phone shops, and market stalls selling non-essential goods can continue to be able to operate click-and-collect and delivery services.
The full list of these businesses can be found in the guidance on closing certain businesses and venues in England, but includes:
- essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, garden centres, building merchants and suppliers of building products and off-licences
- market stalls selling essential retail may also stay open
- businesses providing repair services may also stay open, where they primarily offer repair services
- petrol stations, automatic (but not manual) car washes, vehicle repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, and taxi and vehicle hire businesses
- banks, building societies, post offices, short-term loan providers and money transfer businesses
- funeral directors
- laundrettes and dry cleaners
- medical and dental services
- vets and retailers of products and food for the upkeep and welfare of animals
- animal rescue centres, boarding facilities and animal groomers (may continue to be used for animal welfare, rather than aesthetic purposes)
- agricultural supplies shops
- mobility and disability support shops
- storage and distribution facilities
- car parks, public toilets and motorway service areas
- outdoor playgrounds
- outdoor parts of botanical gardens and heritage sites for exercise
- places of worship
- crematoria and burial ground
- Waste or recycling centres
- getting an MOT, if you need to drive when lawfully leaving home
You can still move home. People outside your household or support bubble should not help with moving house unless absolutely necessary.
Estate and letting agents and removals firms can continue to work. If you are looking to move, you can go to property viewings.
Wherever you live, you may be able to get financial help
- financial support packages for businesses
- financial support for closed businesses as a result of tiering restrictions
- claim for employee wages through Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme
- check if you can claim a grant through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
- financial support if you’re off work because of coronavirus