31/01/2022 Latest advice for Businesses from Wiltshire Council

28 January 2021
This newsletter provides updates on help and advice available locally for businesses.

Read back issues of this business newsletter

Visit our COVID-19 page for our latest updates

Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant is open for applications

We have opened applications for the Omicron Hospitality and Leisure Grant (OHLG), a one-off grant of up to £6,000 that is available to rateable businesses.

The grant is aimed at businesses in the hospitality, leisure and accommodation sectors, with the value of grants depending on your business’s rateable value. The OHLG is £2,667 for businesses with a rateable value of under £15,000; £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 and over to less than £51,000; and £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000.

If your business is eligible you will need to apply for this grant, even if you have previously had a COVID grant. The eligibility has changed so you must read the guidance before you apply – personal care or beauty businesses and gyms and sports businesses are not eligible for the OHLG.

Under the new criteria, businesses must provide a bank statement to support their application. Failure to do so will result in your application being rejected.

The Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG), which provides support to other businesses that have been severely impacted by Omicron, is being finalised. Further information will be announced soon.

Apply for an Omicron Hospitality and Leisure business grant

Wiltshire Training – training and development opportunities

Our Wiltshire Training team, the external delivery arm of our Organisational Development Delivery Team, offer a range of training and development opportunities for internal and external customers.

What the service provides
We can deliver training courses, either remotely or face-to-face in some instances, to your business either at your premises or at other venues in Wiltshire.

Some of our courses are accredited, meaning they can lead to a qualification. Depending on the units of study, this may be an Award, Certificate, Diploma or single certificated units. The accredited courses are certified by relevant industry-leading professional institutions.

Examples of some of our courses include the following, but this list is not exhaustive:

  • Creating an inclusive workplace
  • De-escalation skills
  • Developing your influencing skills
  • Excel – Working with formulas
  • First Aid at work
  • Handling Conflict and having difficult conversations
  • Level 2 Award in Mental health at work
  • Managing Anxiety
  • Outlook – Improve your outlook experience
  • Personal Resilience
  • Safeguarding adults for frontline staff
  • Stress Awareness
  • Understanding Autism.

See our available courses or contact us to discuss your needs: https://www.wiltshire.gov.uk/skills-training.

Benefits to your business

  • Competitive Pricing Structure – with high quality training provided by accredited trainers.
  • Expertise – all our Trainers are experts in their field and continuously develop courses and implement new legislation or guidance into their training.
  • Supporting your staff CPD – we can provide bespoke and standard training to ensure your staff are fully trained, feel valued and are able to do their jobs safely.
  • Trusted and Respected – we pride ourselves on all our long standing and valued relationships with organisations across Wiltshire with a commitment to support our communities.
  • Support and Reassurance – we can offer guidance and signposting to support the ongoing learning needs of your staff.
  • All Our Customers Matter – no customer is too large or too small, we can tailor our training and advice/guidance to cater for all.
More information on Wiltshire Training opportunities and courses
Future High Streets Fund Trowbridge

Following the successful award last year of £16.347 million of Central Government funding through the Future High Streets Fund, we have been developing projects to reinvigorate Trowbridge town centre.

These include:

  • Pedestrian and public space enhancements in the town centre
  • Improvements to the River Biss corridor
  • Vacant commercial unit grant
  • The renovation of the Grade II listed Town Hall and seeking a new use for Market Chambers (the old Wetherspoon’s pub).

We are now at a stage where we are seeking your views and ideas on this emerging work.

Join us at 6pm on Monday 31 January for a public webinar where we will give an overview of what each project is about, what we are proposing to do, and what each project aims to achieve. You can also ask any questions you may have about the projects for our panel to answer.

Following the webinar we would encourage you to complete our online survey which provides an opportunity for you to give us your feedback on the funded Future High Streets projects, as well as your opinion on various aspects of the town centre which will help inform potential future initiatives. A recording of the webinar will be available on our webpage early next week. Please ensure your feedback is sent to us by 5pm on Friday 11 February 2022.

Register for the online public webinar
More information on the projects in Trowbridge
Don’t miss out on up to £2,000 towards childcare costs

Ahead of February half-term, HMRC is reminding parents that you may be eligible for up to £2,000 a year to help with the cost of childcare.

Tax-Free Childcare – the 20% childcare top-up – provides eligible working families with up to £500 every three months (or £1,000 if your child is disabled) towards the cost of holiday clubs, before and after-school clubs, childminders and nurseries, and other accredited childcare schemes.

Tax-Free Childcare is available for children aged up to 11, or 17 if the child has a disability. For every £8 deposited into an account, families will receive an additional £2 in government top-up.

Parents and carers can check their eligibility and register for Tax-Free Childcare via GOV.UK.

Check your eligibility and register for Tax-Free Childcare on GOV.UK
Return to Plan A restrictions in England

Yesterday (27 January), England returned to Plan A restrictions which means:

  • Venues and events are no longer required by law to use the NHS COVID Pass. The NHS COVID Pass can still be used on a voluntary basis
  • Face coverings are no longer required by law in any setting. However, public health guidance remains, suggesting individuals should continue to wear a face covering in crowded and enclosed spaces, where you may come into contact with people you do not normally meet.
View the full GOV.UK Coronavirus guidance and latest restrictions
Help to Grow: Management – Trowbridge, commencing 8 February 2022There is a small number of places remaining on the next cohort, delivered through a blend of online and face to face learning at the White Horse Enterprise Centre, Trowbridge in partnership with the University of the West of England.

Help to Grow: Management will support senior managers of small and medium sized businesses (SMEs) to boost performance, resilience, and long-term growth. The 12-week programme combines online sessions with face-to-face learning, alongside peer support and mentoring.

It is 90% funded by the Government and has been designed to allow you to complete it alongside full-time work. The cost to businesses is £750, and represents a significant opportunity to grow your business and develop mutually beneficial networks.

To be eligible your business must be an SME based in the United Kingdom, employ between 5 and 249 people, have been operational for at least one year, charities are not eligible for this programme.

The applicant must be a senior decision maker, such as a Chief Executive, Finance Director or Operations Director.

Further information and how to register
Useful links
We are providing regular updates on the Coronavirus business support page on our website.
You can also follow us on Twitter and Facebook.For central government updates follow: