Restart Grant Scheme

To support the recovery of the high street as Government's National Restrictions are relaxed the Chancellor announced a new Restart Grant scheme which was launched on 1 April. The Restart Grant scheme aimed to support businesses registered for Business Rates where the main service and activity takes place in a fixed rate-paying premises, in the below sectors;

  • Non-essential retail
  • Hospitality
  • Accommodation
  • Leisure
  • Personal care
  • Gym & Sport

The Restart Grant was split into two strands. Under Strand One, grants of up to £6,000 were available to non-essential retail business premises, to help them reopen safely. Under Strand Two, grants of up to £18,000 were allocated to hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym business premises, which may open later under plans set out in the roadmap and will be more impacted by restrictions when they do reopen.


A business may have been eligible for the Restart Grant scheme if it:

  • Predominantly relies on delivering in-person services for the general public from their business premises in the aforementioned sectors
  • Occupies property in West Lancashire on which it is registered for Business Rates (prior to 1 April 2021)
  • Is trading on 1 April 2021. 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 of notice or under notice
    • The business is engaged in business activity; managing accounts, preparing for reopening, planning and implementing COVID-safe measures

The full eligibility criteria can be found in the Government Restart Grant Guidance (external link)

How much you will receive

Strand One: Non-Essential Retail

The Restart Grant Strand One supported non-essential retail premises with one-off grants under the following thresholds;

Rateable Value One-off Payment
Exactly £15,000 or under £2,667
£15,000 - £50,999 £4,000
Exactly £51,000 or over £6,000

For the purposes of this scheme the Government states;

  • A non-essential retail businesses 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.

Strand Two: Hospitality, Accommodation, Leisure, Personal Care and Gym & Sport

The Restart Grant Strand Two supported Hospitality, Accommodation, Leisure, Personal Care and Gym & Sport business premises with one-off grants under the following thresholds;

Rateable Value One-off Payment
Exactly £15,000 or under £8,000
£15,000 - £50,999 £12,000
Exactly £51,000 or over £18,000

For the purposes of this scheme to Government states;

  • Hospitality businesses can be defined as a business whose main function is to provide a venue for the consumption and sale of food and drink
  • Leisure businesses 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
  • Accommodation businesses defined as a business whose main lodging provision is used for holiday, travel and other purposes
  • Gym & Sport businesses can be defined as a commercial or non-profit establishment where physical exercise or training is conducted on an individual basis 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
  • Personal Care businesses 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.

If a business operates services that could be considered non-essential and also fall into another category, such as hospitality, the level strand that they are eligible for will be determined by assessing which category constitutes 50% or more of their overall business.

How to Apply

The application closure date for this scheme was 30 June 2021.

All businesses previously awarded an National Lockdown Business Support Grant payment were assessed against the eligibility criteria for the Restart Grant. We wrote to those businesses which were identified as potentially meeting the criteria to invite them to complete an online declaration to fully determine their eligibility.

A Restart Grant - Expression of Interest could also be submitted if;

  • A business has previously received a National Lockdown Business Support Grant payment, are eligible for a Restart Grant payment but had not been contacted or
  • A business has never received a National Lockdown Business Support Grant payment but are registered for Business Rates and meet the eligibility criteria outlined above

If you have any questions about the Restart Grant scheme please contact our COVID-19 Business Support Team via email


As per the Government Restart Grant Guidance (external link), this grant will not be paid to the following:

  • 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.

Non-essential Retail Exclusions

  • Food retailers, including food markets, supermarkets, convenience stores, corners shops, off licences, 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, employment agencies and businesses, office buildings, automatic car washes and mobility support shops.

Hospitality Exclusions

  • Food kiosks and businesses whose main service is a takeaway (not applicable to those that have adapted to offer takeaways during periods of restrictions, in alignment with previous COVID-19 business grant schemes).

Leisure Exclusions

  • Coach tour operators, tour operators and telescopes

Accommodation Exclusions

  • Private dwellings, education accommodation, residential homes, care homes, residential family centres, beach huts.

Gym & sport Exclusions

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

Personal Care Exclusions

  • 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.


Prevention of Fraud

We may use any information provided for the prevention and detection of fraud under section 68 of the Serious Crime Act 2007 as part of the Government’s commitment to preventing fraud. Section 68 enables West Lancashire Borough Council to disclose information for the purposes of preventing fraud. Therefore any fraudulent cases will be result in prosecution and those found not to be entitled will have the grant withdrawn and reimbursement required.

The processing of personal data shared with West Lancashire Borough Council in any anti-fraud data matching exercise will be carried out with statutory authority under the powers vested in Part 6 of the "Local Audit and Accountability Act 2014". It does not require the consent of the individuals concerned under the Data Protection Act 2018.

In addition, all data used and shared with external agencies including the Department of Work and Pensions, HMRC and the Her Majesty's Court Service etc. where relevant will be in accordance with the Data Protection Act 2018 and the GDPR.