Business Support Grants

Economic Recovery Grant - Celebrating Success

On the 31st March 2022, the Government COVID Business Grant schemes ceased. Between March 2020 and March 2022, West Lancashire Borough Council were proud to have delivered approximately £41 million in Government funding to more than 2000 businesses during unprecedented times.

Through the Government's mandatory grant schemes, which were predominantly aimed at businesses registered for business rates in the Retail, Hospitality, Leisure Personal and Tourism sectors, West Lancashire Borough Council adapted quick to deliver financial support to businesses who were forced to close during periods of national and local restrictions.

"Our grant came very quickly, can I just say thanks as it must be hard work for your team sorting all this. I think you’ve done a great job with this."
Heyes Opticians, Skelmersdale

Through the Additional Restrictions Grant funding, which was provided to Local Authorities to use at their discretion, West Lancashire Borough Council devised grant schemes to somewhat mirror the Government's mandatory schemes but supported businesses which might not of met the sector definitions outlined by central government or those not required to close during periods of national or local restrictions, but were still significantly impacted.

"Thank you for your help in securing the grants for both Envision Media and Grafit display hire. Your support enabled use to access the much needed grants without any delay."
Envision Media & Grafit Display Hire, Skelmersdale

The Additional Restrictions Grant fund was also used to devise grant schemes to directly support our regular Ormskirk Market Traders and Taxi Drivers who operate within the Borough.

In July 2021, the Council was awarded a third and final round of funding from the Additional Restrictions Grant fund, which could be used to implement wider business support initiatives. The Business Grants team seized this opportunity of additional funding to develop a brand-new business grant scheme, bespoke to West Lancashire and our local businesses.

Economic Recovery Grant

The Business Grants team developed the West Lancashire Economic Recovery Grant scheme which aimed to support businesses within eligible sectors, to assist with implementing new ways of working, and to aid in their recovery, post pandemic. The scheme could also support eligible businesses with set projects in mind, that will enhance or improve a service or delivery area of the business, or for businesses looking to diverse into new technology, or to promote their business to help reach new audiences and customers.

The West Lancashire Economic Recovery Grant scheme offered direct support to a business where it was needed most and helped sustain its future and we were proud to support 126 local businesses with approximately £369,000 worth of funding to help sustain their future.

Some of the feedback we received demonstrates what a positive impact the scheme had;

"Thank you to all at business grants from Eclipse, you have helped us during these tough times and without your support we would not have made it through, you get little credit for your hard work, we appreciate all you have done for us, so from a small business thank you very much"
Eclipse Health & Fitness, Hesketh Bank

"We here at Jollie's Barn just want to say a massive thank you to you and your team. This grant has meant we can provide an extra service to our customers and build our business after the awful last two years. We couldn't have done it without your help".
Jollie's Barn, Mere Brow

Once the Economic Recovery Grant scheme, was finalised, we reached out to the businesses from across the Borough who received the funding to invite them to take part in a campaign to showcase the ways they utilised the funding and how it helped them to recover.

ASAP Vintage

Ormskirk based ASAP Vintage utilised the Economic Recovery Grant to improve their website and implementing a social media marketing campaign. We caught up with Debbie Williams to hear more about how the funding helped her business to bounce back after the pandemic.

© Music: The Right Direction by Shane Ivers - https://www.silvermansound.com

Hurlston Hall

After the first lockdown, Hurlston Hall Leisure Club in Scarisbrick saw a decline in the number of memberships and used the Economic Recovery Grant to deliver a targeted marketing campaign to help change this. Hear from Leisure Manager Dominic Ashton on how successful their campaign was.

© Music: Spark of Inspiration by Shane Ivers - https://www.silvermansound.com

Southport Golf Academy

Southport Golf Academy in Hesketh Bank support golfers at every level but identified the need of specific training and equipment to analyse the needs of golfers. They utilised the Economic Recovery Grant to purchase additional equipment and provide their coaches with specialist training. We spoke with Richard and James Carpenter to hear how this will help them to provide tailored coaching.

© Music: Fresh Lift by Shane Ivers - https://www.silvermansound.com

 

Green Tourism Project

West Lancashire Borough Council also utilised the remaining funds from our Additional Restrictions Grant top up to launch our new 'Green Tourism' scheme, to enable our local business to achieve sustainable growth, reduce energy usage and to save money, and to achieve a sustainable accreditation.

West Lancashire Borough Council want to position the Borough as a leader in sustainable tourism, help support our local businesses to achieve sustainable growth and to become a greener West Lancashire. We have partnered with Green Business UK Ltd to give up to 100 businesses the opportunity to achieve the internationally recognised Green Tourism Standard, fully funded for 1 year by West Lancashire Borough Council.

For more information visit our Green Tourism page.