Restart grant

Please read the guidance below before making an application. You may find it helpful to keep this page open for reference while you complete the application form.

The closing date for applications for the Restart Grant is 11.59pm 30 June 2021.

Apply for a Restart Grant

The Restart Grants scheme (from April 2021) replaces the previous Local Restrictions Support Grants (LRSG) scheme. It is for businesses registered for business rates.

What are Restart Grants?

The Restart Grant scheme is a one-off payment to support businesses that are mostly reliant on delivering in-person services for the general public in non-essential retail, hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses in England.

All applicants that previously received a Local Restrictions Support Grant for November and/or January and are eligible for the Restart Grant scheme will be automatically sent the payment so do not need to reapply.

Who is eligible for a Restart Grant?

To qualify for a grant, a business must:

  • be registered for business rates;
  • be trading on 1 April 2021 (carrying on a trade or profession, or buying and selling goods or services in order to generate turnover - read more about what is classed as trading below); and
  • not be in liquidation, dissolved, struck off or subject to a striking-off notice.

Any changes to the rating list (rateable value or to the hereditament) after 1 April 2021 will not affect the eligibility or the value of the restart grant. Local authorities are unable to adjust or pay where the rating list is subsequently amended retrospectively to 1 April 2021.

Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted Covid-19 business support grant subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding. Read more about subsidy allowances below.

Grant income received by a business is taxable. The Restart Grant will need to be included as income in the tax return of the business.

The government will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud. Any business caught falsifying their records to gain additional grant money will face prosecution. Any funding issued will be recovered as may any grants paid in error.

Restart Grants for non-essential retail

These are aimed at business rate-paying businesses open to the public and mainly or wholly for the purposes of retail sale or hire of goods or services, where the primary purpose of products or services provided are not necessary to the health and well-being of the public.

  • Non-essential retail

    For the purposes of this scheme, a non-essential retail business can be defined as a business that is used mainly or wholly for the purposes of retail sale or hire of goods or services by the public, where the primary purpose of products or services provided are not necessary to the health and well-being of the public.

    The local authority will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    • businesses offering in-person non-essential retail to the general public
    • businesses that were likely to have been required to cease their retail operation in the January 2021 lockdown
    • businesses that sell directly to consumers


    Who is included?

    • Betting offices
    • Departmental stores
    • Markets (other than livestock)
    • Sales kiosks
    • Showrooms (e.g. kitchen, bathroom, tile, glazing)
    • Tobacco and vape stores
    • Antiques stores
    • Travel agents
    • Electronic goods and mobile phone shops
    • Clothes shops
    • Book shops
    • Auction rooms
    • Car auction
    • Car showrooms
    • Car supermarkets
    • Car washes (standalone)
    • Car/caravan sales/display/hiring sites
    • Charity shops
    • Carpet stores
    • Furniture shops
    • Sofa shops
    • Homeware shops
    • Florists
    • Plant nurseries
    • Jewellers
    • Stationery shops
    • Gift shops
    • Make-up shops
    • Animal groomers
    • Sweet shops
    • Photography studios


    Who is excluded?

    • Food retailers including food markets, supermarkets, convenience stores, corners shops, off licences and breweries
    • pharmacies
    • chemists
    • newsagents
    • animal rescue centres and boarding facilities
    • building merchants
    • petrol stations
    • vehicle repair and MOT services
    • bicycle shops
    • taxi and vehicle hire businesses
    • education providers including tutoring services
    • banks, building societies and other financial providers
    • post offices
    • funeral directors
    • laundrettes and dry cleaners
    • medical practices
    • veterinary surgeries and pet shops
    • agricultural supply shops
    • garden centres
    • storage and distribution facilities
    • wholesalers
    • estate agents
    • employment agencies and businesses
    • office buildings
    • automatic car washes and mobility support shops 

One-off amount for non-essential retail premises 

The one-off payments are based on the business’s rateable value on 1 April 2021. The payments available to non-essential retail businesses in premises in the borough are:

  • Rateable value of £15,000 or under: £2,667
  • Rateable value over £15,000 and less than £51,000: £4,000
  • Rateable value of £51,000 or over: £6,000.

Restart Grants for business in other eligible sectors

The following types of rate-paying business in the hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care, gym and sport sectors may be eligible for a Restart Grant.

  • Hospitality

    For the purposes of this scheme, a hospitality business can be defined as a business whose main function is to provide a venue for the consumption and sale of food and drink.

    The local authority will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    • businesses offering in-person food and drink services to the general public
    • businesses that provide food and/or drink to be consumed on the premises, including outdoors


    Who is included?

    • Food courts
    • Public houses/pub restaurants
    • Restaurants
    • Roadside restaurants
    • Wine bars
    • Cafes


    Who is excluded?

    Businesses whose main service is a takeaway or food kiosk.

  • Leisure

    For the purposes of this scheme, a leisure business can be defined as a business that provides opportunities, experiences and facilities, in particular for culture, recreation, entertainment, celebratory events and days and nights out. 

    The local authority will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    Businesses that may provide in-person intangible experiences in addition to goods.

    Who is included?

    • Bingo halls
    • Bowling alleys
    • Casinos and gambling clubs
    • Cinemas
    • Museums and art galleries
    • Roller skating rings
    • Theatres
    • Conference centres
    • Exhibition centres including for use as banquet halls and other events
    • Wedding venues
    • Events venues
    • Heritage railways
    • Public halls
    • Night clubs and discotheques
    • Shisha bars
    • Tourist attractions
    • Amusement arcades including adult gaming centres
    • Soft play centres or areas
    • Indoor riding centres
    • Clubs and institutions
    • Village halls and scout huts, cadet huts etc


    Who is excluded?

    All retail businesses, coach tour operators, tour operators and telescopes.

  • Accommodation

    For the purposes of this scheme, an accommodation business can be defined as a business whose main lodging provision is used for holiday, travel and other purposes.

    We will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    • businesses that provide accommodation for ‘away from home’ stays for work or leisure purposes
    • businesses that provide accommodation for short-term leisure and holiday purposes.


    Who is included?

    • Caravan parks
    • Country house hotels
    • Guest and boarding houses
    • Hostels
    • Hotels
    • Lodges
    • Holiday apartments
    • cottages or bungalows
    • Campsites
    • Boarding houses
    • Canal boats or other vessels
    • B&Bs
    • Catered holiday homes
    • Holiday homes


    Who is excluded?

    • Private dwellings
    • education accommodation
    • residential homes
    • care homes
    • residential family centres
    • beach huts
  • Gym and sports

    For the purposes of this scheme, a gym and sport business can be defined as a commercial or non-profit establishment where physical exercise or training is conducted on an individual or group basis. Using exercise equipment or open floor space with or without instruction, or where individual and group sporting, athletic and physical activities are participated in competitively or recreationally.

    The local authority will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    • businesses that offer in-person exercise and sport activities to the general public
    • businesses that open to members of the public paying an entry or membership fee
    • businesses that offer exercise classes or activities, which may mandate space and no masks etc.


    Who is included?

    • Dance schools and centres
    • Dance studios
    • Gymnasia/fitness suites
    • Cricket centres
    • Ski centres
    • Sports and leisure centres
    • Outdoor sports centres
    • Outdoor adventure centres
    • Squash courts
    • Tennis centres
    • Sports courts
    • Swimming pools
    • Shooting and archery venues
    • Driving ranges
    • Water sport centres
    • Golf courses


    Who is excluded?

    Home gyms, home exercise studios, home sports courts and home sports grounds.

  • Personal care

    For the purposes of this scheme, a personal care business can be defined as a business which provides a service, treatment or activity for the purposes of personal beauty, hair, grooming, body care and aesthetics, and wellbeing.

    The local authority will use the following criteria to assess eligibility:

    • businesses that deliver in-person holistic, beauty and hair treatments
    • businesses that provide services such as tattoos and piercings.


    Who is included?

    • Spas, sauna and steam rooms
    • Hairdressing salons
    • Tanning salons
    • Nail salons
    • Massage centres, massage treatments, Tattoo and piercing studios
    • Holistic therapy (reflexology, massage, acupuncture)
    • Barbers, groomers
    • Beauty salons, Beauticians, aesthetics
    • Other non-surgical treatments


    Who is excluded?

    • Businesses that only provide personal care goods, rather than services
    • businesses used solely as training centres for staff, apprentices and others
    • businesses providing dental services, opticians, audiology services, chiropody, chiropractors, osteopaths and other medical or health services, including services which incorporate personal care services, treatments required by those with disabilities and services relating to mental health

One-off amount for hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym business premises 

The one-off payments are based on the business’s rateable value on 1 April 2021. The payments available to non-essential retail businesses in premises in the borough are:

  • Rateable value of £15,000 or under: £8,000
  • Rateable value of over £15,000 and less than £51,000 : £12,000
  • Rateable value of £51,000 or over: £18,000

Further exclusions to all grant eligibility

  • Businesses that are not within the ratings system will not be eligible to receive funding under this scheme.
  • Businesses that have already received grant payments that equal the maximum permitted subsidy allowances will not be eligible to receive funding.
  • Businesses that are in administration, insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made, are not eligible for funding under this scheme.

What is classed as trading

For the purpose of this scheme a business is considered to be trading if it is engaged in business activity.

This should be interpreted as carrying on a trade or profession, or buying and selling goods or services in order to generate turnover.

To help further, some trading indicators are included below that can help assess what can be defined as trading for the purposes of the grant schemes. Indicators that a business is trading are:

  • The business has staff on furlough
  • The business continues to trade online, via click and collect services etc
  • The business is not in liquidation, dissolved, struck off or subject to a striking off notice or under notice
  • The business is engaged in business activity; managing accounts, preparing for reopening, planning and implementing COVID-safe measures

New rules on grant subsidy limits

Subsidy allowance has now replaced State Aid following the end of the transition period and the UK’s exit from the EU. You need to tell the council if you are in breach of the following subsidy rules.

The Restart Grant scheme is covered by three subsidy allowances:

  • Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance: must not breach £335,000 (subject to exchange rates) over any period of three years
  • Covid-19 Business Grant Allowance: must not breach £1,600,000
  • Covid-19 Business Grant Special Allowance: if you have reached your limits under the Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance and Covid-19 Business Grant Allowance, the threshold may be extended but must not breach £9,000,000. The following conditions must be met:
    • The Special Allowance covers only the applicant's uncovered fixed costs incurred during the period between 1 March 2020 and 31 March 2022, including such costs incurred in any part of that period ('eligible period');
    • Applicants must demonstrate a decline in turnover during the eligible period of at least 30 per cent compared to the same period in 2019. The calculation of losses will be based on audited accounts or official statutory accounts filed at Companies House, or approved accounts submitted to HMRC which includes information on the applicant's profit and loss;
    • 'Uncovered fixed costs' means fixed costs not otherwise covered by profit, insurance or other subsidies;
    • The grant payment must not exceed 70 per cent of the applicant's uncovered fixed costs, except for micro and small enterprises (for the purposes of this scheme defined as less than 50 employees and less than £9,000,000 of annual turnover and/or annual balance sheet), where the grant payment must not exceed 90 per cent of the uncovered fixed costs;
    • Grant payments under this allowance must not exceed £9,000,000 per single economic actor. This allowance includes any grants previously received in accordance with Section 3.12 of the European Commission's Temporary Framework; all figures used must be gross, that is, before any deduction of tax or other charge;
    • Grants provided under this allowance shall not be cumulated with other subsidies for the same costs

An applicant must be able to provide the necessary documentation to demonstrate it is eligible under the Covid-19 Business Grant Special Allowance.

Grants under these three allowances can be combined for a potential total allowance of up to £10,935,000 (subject to exchange rates and certain conditions being met).

The scheme rules should be applied to recipients at the level of economic actor. This is defined as an entity or a group of entities making up a single economic entity regardless of its legal status, that is engaged in an economic activity by offering goods or services on a market.

You will need to notify us if you are in breach of the subsidy allowance by accepting any restart grants. If you have reached your limits under the Small Amounts of Financial Assistance Allowance and Covid-19 Business Grant Allowance you will need to provide necessary documentation to demonstrate you are eligible for the Covid-19 Business Grant Special Allowance by emailing business.grants@lbhf.gov.uk

Further details are available on the government website regarding these rules. Find out more about subsidy allowance