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Saturday, September 19, 2020

County businesses receive £33m in government covid support

Businesses in Denbighshire have already received emergency coronavirus support totalling more than £33m from the Welsh Labour Government.
The most up-to-date information shows 2,761 businesses of all sizes across the county have been awarded crucial support since the pandemic struck – with more grants being awarded every day.
Clwyd South Member of the Senedd Ken Skates said: “I am proud that the Welsh Government has been able to help so many local businesses, from small and medium-sized enterprises to key local employers and hotels and pubs. The Welsh Government’s support package for businesses is the most generous anywhere in the UK and more money reaching small businesses every day.”
Welsh Government data shows 2,274 Denbighshire businesses already in receipt of Small Business Rates Relief got grants of £10,000 and another 297 in the tourism and hospitality industry were awarded £25,000 each. In addition, more than 2,500 start-up grants of £2,500 are currently being processed.
The Welsh Government’s Economic Resilience Fund (ERF), which was designed to fill the gaps left by the UK Government’s support schemes, has so far awarded £3.17m to another 190 Denbighshire companies. Among the recipients was Llangollen Railway, which received a £70,000 grant.
Peter Carroll, managing director of ProAdventure in Llangollen said: "The help has made it possible for the directors to carry on with mail order all through lockdown, and given us the certainty that we can keep stock levels up to cope with increased mail order volumes and bring staff back from furlough earlier than might have been possible without support."
South Denbighshire Community Partnership, based in Corwen, has also received Welsh Government support throughout the crisis to help it meet the growing demand associated with the Covid-19 outbreak, enabling the not-for-profit group to help hundreds of vulnerable local people.
Neatcrown, which employs up to 70 people at its Corwen factory during busy periods, received £77,500 through the ERF. 
Managing Director Colin Roberts said: “The money from the Welsh Government allowed us to safeguard jobs at the site during a period of real uncertainty. Our orders had been decimated and we had workers shielding. It really was a lifeline at that point. 
“We are a close-knit company and we’re part of the community. We have multiple generations of the same family working here and have some members of staff who have worked here for more than 30 years. It would have been a huge blow to Corwen if we’d had to close. We wanted to keep going and the support from the Welsh Government helped us do that.”
Mr Skates added: “Around 11% of all awards through the Economic Resilience Fund have been to businesses in North East Wales, and almost £28m has been awarded in total across North Wales. Sadly, it is impossible to help every single business, but the vast majority of applications have been successful, and I’m pleased there are many which we have helped stay afloat.
“I’m proud to be part of a Welsh Labour Government which is standing up for our region.”
In addition to the support for local businesses, Llangollen International Musical Eisteddfod – which had to cancel this year’s event – received a Welsh Government grant of £338,000 to help with business continuity through 2020, including planning and preparation for 2021.
Chairman Rhys Davies said: “We are very grateful for the support of Welsh Government so that we can continue to promote Welsh culture on the international stage and spread the peace message around the world. There are going to be challenges for all festivals, so collaboration is the key.”

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