Multi-million boost to support the recovery of high streets across Greater Manchester
High streets across Greater Manchester are to be given a multi-million-pound boost to help them get ready for re-opening next month.
In total the 10 authorities across the region are to share £2,509,403 to help them introduce a range of safety measures in a move to get people back to work and customers back to the shops.
The £50m Reopening High Streets Safely Fund, announced by High Streets Minister Simon Clarke, is for councils across England to support their local high streets get safely back to business.
It will also support a range of practical safety measures including new signs, street markings and temporary barriers. This will help get businesses get ready for when they can begin trading safely, not only in high streets and town and city centres, but also in other public spaces like beachfronts and promenades.
Councils will also be able to use this money to develop local marketing campaigns to explain the changes to the public and reassure them that their high streets and other commercial areas are safe.
Commenting, Laura Evans, the Conservative Greater Manchester Mayoral Candidate said: “High streets are critical to the economic recovery of our towns and cities and this cash builds on funding already in place to support their revival and boost their economic fortunes.
“We have some fantastic high streets across the whole of Greater Manchester and I for one will be out supporting my local shops when they are back up and running.”
High Streets Minister Simon Clarke MP said:
“As we begin to slowly return to normality, the re-opening our high streets will be key to kick-starting our economic recovery.
“Levelling up the regions and supporting our high streets has always been central to the mission of this government.
“Many businesses have already introduced creative ways of trading such as contactless collection or taking orders by instant messaging and shows that they are ready for the challenges ahead.
“That’s why we are providing an extra £50 million for councils to support a range of safety measures that will help get these businesses back on track and ensure that people can enjoy their time visiting their local high street safely again.”
Allocations per local authority
The government has already introduced a comprehensive package of support for business and workers during the economic emergency including:
- The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme where small and large employers are eligible to apply for a government grant of 80% of workers’ salaries up to £2,500 a month, backdated to March 1. The scheme will continue until end of October 2020.
- £330 billion worth of government backed and guaranteed loans to support businesses including a new Bounce Back Loans scheme, which will provide loans of up to £50,000 available to the smallest businesses affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
- Businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors in England will not have to pay business rates for the 2020 to 2021 tax year.
- A deferral of the next quarter of VAT payments for firms, until the end of June 2020 - representing a £30 billion injection into the economy.
- A £12.3 billion package for local authorities to deliver grants of up to £25,000 to eligible businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors; and
- New temporary measures to safeguard the UK high street against aggressive debt recovery actions during the coronavirus pandemic