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News and information for West Oxfordshire’s businesses - 24 May 21

Welcome from Suzi Coul

Hello, my name is Suzi Coul and I am delighted to take up the Cabinet role covering economic development.  This is such an important area of work for the Council as we move out of lockdown and I look forward to working with many of you over the next few months.

We have some important news about grants below - more businesses will be eligible for the Additional Restrictions Grant. Please do check your eligibility to make sure you don't miss out.

I would also like to remind you that our business survey is open until 31 May. We have had some really helpful responses so far for which we are grateful but we are keen to hear from as many local businesses as possible. Your response will help ensure we are directing support and resources to as many businesses as we can, both over the next few months and as we move into the longer term. 
Take part in our Business Survey

More businesses eligible for ARG

Businesses in receipt of either the Self-Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) or the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme (CJRS) will now be eligible for the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG).

ARG is a discretionary grant that we administer. We constantly review the take up and feedback to ensure we are supporting those businesses most affected by the COVID restrictions. Our original ARG policy excluded businesses in receipt of the SEISS and CJRS but, after careful consideration, it has been agreed that those businesses will now be eligible for ARG. 

The ARG application will open for ONE WEEK ONLY until Monday 31 May for these businesses to apply. Please visit our Grants Webpage for further details and the application form.
Grants Webpage

Deadline looming for LRSG

The application window for the Local Restrictions Support Grant (LRSG) for the period of 16 Feb to 31 March 2021 will be closing on 31 May 2021 and applications received after this date will not be considered. 

Please see the Grants Webpage for further details and the application form. All successful grants for this period will be paid by 30 June 2021.
Grants Webpage

Twin Town Challenge

Twin Town Challenge is back!  TTC is a legendary team-based challenge involving a fleet of 100 cars all costing less that £500, driving from Blenheim Palace to Le Touquet, France and competing in challenges along the way. 

The event will take place from 29 April to 2 May 2022 and will raise money for Charlbury based technology charity SpecialEffect.  There are still spaces available - please sign up below!
Twin Town Challenge

Made Smarter – Manufacturing webinars

Made Smarter is a series of webinars for manufacturing businesses showcasing how digital technologies can improve business performance. The series is run by the Knowledge Transfer Network (KTN) and each webinar is delivered by an industry expert.  
Made Smarter webinars

Other helpful organisations

Several business groups are coming up trumps with help and advice for businesses. The ones below are good but do also check the trade association for your own sector.
  • Enterprise Nation - a vibrant community of small businesses and business advisers with a website packed full of resources
  • Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) - the UK’s largest grassroots business campaigning group
  • OSEP CIC - supports social entrepreneurs, social enterprises, enterprising charities and purposeful business across Oxfordshire
  • Prince's Trust - useful advice, guidance and resources targeted at young entrepreneurs under the age of 30.
  • Institute of Directors (IoD) - business organisation for company directors
  • Association of Independent Professionals and the Self-Employed (IPSE) - represents the UK's self-employed including freelancers, interim managers, consultants and contractors 
  • UK Hospitality - represents the broad hospitality sector – covering everything from bars, coffee shops, contract catering, hotels, nightclubs, visitor attractions and other leisure venues
  • Oxfordshire Local Enterprise Partnership (OxLEP) - Growth hub for Oxfordshire
  • MD2MD - helps managing directors compare notes on business MD to MD. Now operating online with a free trial period for qualifying business leaders.

Keeping up to date

Please forward this email to others to whom this might be useful and encourage them to sign up to further updates.  Please note that you can access previous editions of this newsletter too.
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