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Small businesses in Fareham receive lifeline funding

Fareham Borough Council has approved over £820,000 in grant payments to small local businesses, to help them through the pandemic.

The cash has been allocated from the Local Authority Discretionary Business Grant scheme. The scheme, funded by Government, gave businesses which had not qualified for any other Government support, the opportunity to apply for a share of a £1m pot.

So far 43 small businesses across the Borough have been paid grants of either £2,500 or £5,000 (worth £145,000 in total).

A further 58 grants for either £7,500 or £10,000 (worth £552,500 in total) will be paid out to businesses soon and nine more applications are still being processed.

Applications were invited last month, and this round of the scheme is now closed. Types of business which have been helped include small manufacturing firms, businesses located in share offices, dentists, a podiatrist and a nail bar.

Executive Leader of Fareham Borough Council, Cllr Seán Woodward, said: “We know this has been a very challenging time for local businesses, so I’m pleased that we have been able to process applications for this Government funding so quickly. This funding will be a lifeline for businesses which had slipped through the net for other forms of Government support during the pandemic. We will process the remaining applications as quickly as possible.”  

Electronics business, Lee Godbold Limited, received a share of the funding.

Managing Director, Lee Godbold, said: “At the start of lockdown it felt like the business was in real trouble, our revenue stopped with immediate effect and we were at a loss how to manage this unprecedented situation. After many sleepless nights we started to reach out to the bank, landlord, suppliers, HMRC and the Council for help. It soon became apparent there was good advice and resources available to help us for which I’m truly thankful.  Hopefully we’re coming out the other side now in reasonable shape and have managed to keep all of our valuable team onboard. I’d especially like to thank Fareham Borough Council for approving our application for the Discretionary Business Grant funding which kept us up to date with our payments to Fareham Innovation Centre meaning the team can return to work within a safe environment.”

A Fareham nail bar is also among those to receive a share of the funding.

The owner said: “Being a nail bar and having to be closed for longer than we had hoped the grant has helped me with rent payments and to keep the business afloat. I'm very grateful for the help received from the Council and Government.” 

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