South Tyneside shops offered grant help to give themselves a new look

Shops across South Tyneside can get a helping hand to give themselves a facelift.

By Kevin Clark
Monday, 8th November 2021, 11:27 am

The borough council has launched a Shop Front Improvement Grant Scheme to support retailers who want to spruce up their premises.

Grants from £500 to £2,500 are available to cover a maximum of 50% of eligible project costs including shop frontages, security shutters, new signage, building works, external cosmetic improvements and enhanced accessibility.

Eligible businesses may apply for grant funding for projects which cost at least £1,000 excluding VAT. There is a limited budget available and grants will be awarded on a first come, first served basis.

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Coun Mark Walsh is the council’s Lead Member for Regeneration and Economy. He said the cash was part of the authority’s drive to help its High Streets recover from the impact of the Covid pandemic.

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“The scheme has been directed specifically at the retail sector who weren’t supported in the last round of ARG grants,.” he said.

“The funding, whilst limited, is at the discretion of councils in terms of how it is spent. Creating the right conditions for recovery and investment is a key priority for us, as is supporting our town centres, high streets and villages and we hope that this additional funding will help support retail businesses who are looking to make improvements to their premises.

Funding is available to cover up to 50 per cent of the cost of work

“Throughout the pandemic we have done everything we can to support our business community and continue to do so as we move to recovery post covid.”

The funding forms part of the Covid business recovery funding which the Council has administered throughout the pandemic. South Tyneside Council has administered more than £50million of grants to businesses in total.

Coun Walsh added: “South Tyneside Council has continued to listen to, and respond to, the needs of local businesses throughout the pandemic. Due to the limited resource available, we have had to make difficult decisions about how to prioritise and allocate the funding available. Unfortunately, the Council has not been able to support every business that contacted us given the financial constraints, however we have delivered these grant schemes as quickly as possible to those organisations within the criteria.”

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