Advice for Businesses



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The government’s Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme has gone live ahead of April’s payday.

The claim process will be online and self-service but, will be accompanied by guidance from HMRC. If you haven’t already, be sure to have the following nine pieces of essential information for your application. The queue will dwarf anything you’ve seen at Tesco in recent weeks so be prepped when you log on.

All UK employers can access support to continue paying employees that would otherwise have been laid off. HMRC will cover 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to £2,500 per month.

To claim, you will need:

your employer PAYE reference number

the number of employees being furloughed

National Insurance Numbers for the employees you want to furlough

Names of the employees you want to furlough

Payroll/works number for the employees you want to furlough

your Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference or Corporation Tax Unique Taxpayer Reference or Company Registration Number

the claim period (start and end date)

amount claimed (per the minimum length of furloughing of 3 consecutive weeks)

your bank account number and sort code

You must also be sure to adjust wages to 80% as HMRC will not make this adjustment.

Claim here


While it may not be absolutely top of your list of priorities right now, we know you’d want to do everything you can to feed people and not bins, especially when many more people are struggling to feed people.

Below we have highlighted 4 amazing redistribution businesses aim to get back to you ASAP to inform you if it’s something they can take, and the logistics to do this, however please appreciate their increased demands at present.

Too Good To Go

For any meals, prepped food, and wholefoods which are ready to be purchased, complete this form

They are also waiving their admin fee for temporary profiles so restaurants can get some return on their waste immediately

Too Good to Go have also launched #SupportLocal a new temporary not-for-profit feature that allows businesses to sell a special take-away menu through their app. Find out more here. 


For any wholefoods, or packaged foods with an ingredient line and + 3day expiry date, fill in the sheet attached and send to [email protected].

If members of your team are able to volunteer, are based near a FareShare site or can drive, then they’d be welcome them with open arms. Call your local FareShare site.


If you have any prepped food, or wholefoods with a life of less than three days expiry, fill in this form, and OLIO will be in touch regarding collection

Volunteers will come and take this produce off your hands

Company Shop

Company Shop can help suppliers (and foodservice businesses) financially by purchasing their surplus.

They can take ingredients, stock not in finished packaging etc.

Company Shop serves a membership of NHS workers, emergency services and food supply chain with that stock – so pretty much all the people that are keeping the show on the road.

Email [email protected] or [email protected]

Delivery Options

If you’re not already on one of the delivery platforms, the three major providers are all ready to work with restaurants looking find an alternative way of feeding their customers who don’t want to go out.

Handy price comparison here

Or you can customise your own model like Waterhouse in London who have moved to a Tap and Take model. Update: now closed.

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Business Loans

Starting week beginning 26th March businesses can access loans of up to £5m from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by British Business Bank. The first six month will be interest free. Read more

Businesses with a turnover of no more than £45m can access loans of up to £5m from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, delivered by British Business Bank.

  • The first 12 months are interest free
  • The Govt will provide all of the major participating banks with an 80% guarantee on each loan

Contact your bank or one of the participating 40 providers and check out the full eligibility criteria on the British Bank website.

Business Rates

No hospitality business will have to pay business rates for 2020-2021 tax year.

Any hospitality business premises with a rateable value of £15,000 – £51,000 will receive a grant of £25,000.

These reliefs will be available from your local authority and they will have guidance by Friday 20 March.

If you pay less than £15,000 you are eligible for a one-off grant of £10,000. Your local authority will contact you directly about this.

You can use the business rates calculator to estimate the rates you will be not be paying

Cash grants

Cash grants of up to £25,000 per property are available under the Retail and Hospitality Grant Scheme.

Businesses don’t need to do anything. Your local authority will write to you if you are eligible.

If you have a property with a rateable value of £15,000 or under, you’ll receive £10,000

If you have a property with a rateable value of between £15,000-£51,000, you’ll receive £25,000.


All SMEs – those employers with fewer than 250 employees – can reclaim Statutory Sick Pay for sickness absence due to COVID-19 for two weeks.

You’ll need to keep records of the absences but won’t require a GP note. You can find more details here.


The Government has announced a moratorium on lease forfeitures until 30th June and this could be extended.

Tenants are still liable to pay rent but protected if unable to do so because of COVID-19.

Full details will be included in the Coronavirus Bill.



The Government is advising that only those businesses with policies that cover pandemics or government ordered closure will be covered. But again, the advice is to check your policy and contact your insurer direct.

For more information, check the Government’s website which is being regularly updated here.

The Government has deferred VAT payments (and income tax payments for the self-employed) for three months (from 20 March-30 June 2020)

No action is required unless you pay by direct debit, in which case you’ll need to cancel this. If you have outstanding tax liabilities contact HMRC through its Time to Pay offer scheme.

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