Daily Briefing: Your latest Grants and COVID Scheme Updates

With so many new Grants and COVID scheme updates every day it's hard to keep track of them all - let alone understand how they apply to you. That's why we've created a Grants and COVID Daily Briefing so you can instantly find the right information and make the right decisions for your business.

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Latest Grants and COVID Scheme Updates: 8 March 2021



Grant Funding

Round 25 of BGP2 opens for startups in the Marches area

Round 25 of Birmingham City Council's Business Growth Programme 2 scheme has opened for applications. The scheme is providing grants of between £2,500 and £10,000 for startup SMEs based in the Marches area (Herefordshire, Shropshire, and Telford and Wrekin) to help them strengthen supply chains, stimulate innovation and grow their business. Applications close on 17 March 2021.


Grant Funding

Round 25 of BGP2 opens for SMEs in the West Midlands

Round 25 of Birmingham City Council's Business Growth Programme 2 scheme has opened for applications. The scheme is providing grants of up to £1 million for SMEs based in the Marches and Greater Birmingham Local Enterprise Partnership areas to help them strengthen supply chains, stimulate innovation and grow their business. Applications close on 17 March 2021.


Sector Funding

March 2021 round of automotive transformation fund opens for applications

Round 8 of Innovate UK's Automotive Transformation Fund has opened for expressions of interest. The scheme has a total fund of £1 billion to invest in capital projects that help to industrialise the electrified automotive supply chain at scale in the UK. Applications close on 24 March 2021.


Sector Funding

March 2021 round of civil aerospace technology innovation programme opens

Innovate UK has launched the March 2021 round of the £3.9 billion Aerospace Technology Institute Programme, which funds R&D projects which have a potential application within the civil aerospace sector. Applications close on 17 March 2021.


Grant Funding

£250,000 grants available for low carbon projects in Dorset

Low Carbon Dorset is providing grants of between £5,000 and £250,000 for SMEs to help them deliver renewable energy and energy efficiency projects. Grants can cover up to 40% of project costs.


Government Support

UK Government's COVID workplace testing programme opens for registrations

The UK Government’s free COVID-19 workplace testing programme has now opened for registrations from all businesses across England. Firms have until 31 March 2021 to register for the scheme, which will remain free until the end of June 2021, and will provide free lateral flow tests for their employees that can detect COVID cases in under 30 minutes.


Government Support

Pharmacies in England at risk due to COVID loan repayment demands

Hundreds of Pharmacies across England are at risk of closure because the Treasury is demanding the repayment of emergency loans that helped them to stay open during the pandemic. Around £370 million was lent to pharmacies last year, and requests for the loans to be written off have so far been rejected.


Reopening the Economy

Schools reopen across England

Primary schools across England have opened for all pupils as of today (8 March 2021), while most secondary schools have started with a phased return, which will entail pupils taking regular COVID tests.


Government Support

Many UK travel businesses excluded from Government COVID support

Many travel businesses in the UK continue to be 'excluded' from Government COVID support despite not trading for almost a year, according to the Association of British Travel Agents. Tour operators, online travel companies and home-based workers have not been eligible for Government grants, and the industry is calling for targeted support as overseas travel is set to resume in May 2020.


SME Loans

Nucleus launches new lending product for UK SMEs

Nucleus Commercial Finance has launched a new lending product which will help UK SMEs that are borrowing through the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) to top-up their existing funds. The Business Growth Loans will allow companies to borrow up to £25,000 with a term of six months as the CBILS comes to an end, with qualifying businesses having the option to apply for a top-up every quarter.

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