Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Guidance for employees, employers and businesses in providing advice about the novel coronavirus, COVID-19.

Intelligence Alert

Be aware of COVID-19 scams. We are aware of an increase in scam emails, calls and texts relating to COVID-19 Government business grants which may mimic government messages as a way of appearing authentic and unthreatening. Don't give out private information or reply to text messages, and don't download attachments in emails you weren't expecting. If you would like to report any instances of suspected COVID-19 fraud, please visit Action Fraud and the Suspicious E-mail Reporting Service; launched recently to capture COVID-19 related scams.

Business grant register

If you would like to apply for the open Business Support Grant Funding, please register your details here. For information regarding the Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund, please see below for further details.

Guidance and advice on COVID-19

Latest News

National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) COVID-19 SME Guidance

NCSC has published guidance to support businesses moving from physical to digital delivery as part of the ongoing COVID-19 response. The guidance has been created specifically to support businesses who are relying more heavily on IT services to run their business. The NCSC is committed to equipping all UK businesses with the best cyber security advice. The support package includes guidance on home working, video teleconferencing and spotting email scams related to COVID-19.

Government Business Support Helpline – change of telephone number

From 18 May 2020, the Business Support Helpline phone number will change to FREEPHONE 0800 998 1098. This new number will go live when the helpline opens at 9am. The old number will still be active to redirect callers for a few weeks.

Everyone in the United Kingdom with symptoms now eligible for coronavirus tests
Everyone in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland with coronavirus (COVID-19) symptoms can now get a test.

Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme set to launch
Employers will be able to make claims through the Coronavirus Statutory Sick Pay Rebate Scheme from 26 May.

Future Fund will open for applications from Wednesday 20th May

The new Future Fund will support innovative UK companies with good potential, that are essential in ensuring the UK retains its world leading position in science, innovation and technology.

Developed by government and delivered by the British Business Bank, the Future Fund will help these companies through the current period of economic disruption and recovery, so they are able to continue their growth trajectory and reach their full economic potential.

The UK Government’s COVID-19 recovery strategy

The 50 page document published by the government on 11 May 2020 can be viewed and downloaded here.

Business support

Local Authority Discretionary Grants Fund

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy announced on 1 May 2020 the release of an additional 5% of funding to support businesses outside the scope of the current Business Rates grant scheme. The guidance was released to Local Authorities on the 13 May 2020. Once this has been reviewed, further instructions on how to access the funding will be made available.

Other business support

The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support public services, people and businesses through this period of disruption caused by COVID-19. This package includes support for:

  • Paying your employees through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme. The full step by step guide for employers is available here
  • The self-employed through the Self-Employment Income Support Scheme. Check if you are eligible to claim here
  • Claiming back sick pay paid to employees due to coronavirus. For more information about eligibility and how employers (or you on their behalf) can prepare to use the scheme, please visit GOV.UK.
  • Deferral of VAT payments and Self Assessment payments due to coronavirus
  • Retail, hospitality and leisure businesses that pay business rates
  • Nursery businesses that pay business rates
  • Businesses that pay little or no business rates
  • Small and medium-sized businesses
    • Business Interruption Loan Scheme
    • Coronavirus Future Fund
    • Coronavirus Bounce Back loan
  • Large businesses
  • Trade Credit Insurance guarantees

For full details of of these schemes and up to date guidance visit: financial support for businesses during COVID-19

Local Enterprise Partnerships

A range of support is available to support businesses with the challenges they face due to the COVID-19 outbreak through the Humber LEP Business Growth Hub and Greater Lincolnshire LEP. This support can be accessed by visiting their dedicated COVID-19 Business Support pages:

Open 4 Business GRANTfinder

To support you through these challenging times, small and medium sized businesses are able to search for new local, regional and national funding on the Open 4 Business GRANTfinder portal available here:

The Portal is updated regularly and can be easily searched by businesses on the basis of their industry, region and business size, and provides information on how to apply for funding and contact funders directly.

If you are having trouble accessing the portal, please contact for technical support.

Working Safely During COVID-19

The UK government, in consultation with industry, has produced 'COVID-19 secure' guidance to help ensure workplaces are as safe as possible. The new guidance covers 8 workplace settings which are allowed to be open, from outdoor environments and construction sites to factories and takeaways. Guidance is also available on how to carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment and how to clean your workplace safely.

The 8 guides cover a range of different types of work. Many businesses operate more than one type of workplace, such as an office, factory and fleet of vehicles. You may need to use more than one of these guides as you think through what you need to do to keep employees safe.

  • Construction and other outdoor work – Guidance for people who work in or run outdoor working environments.
  • Factories, plants and warehouses - Guidance for people who work in or run factories, plants and warehouses
  • Homes – Guidance for people working in, visiting or delivering to home environments as well as their employers
  • Labs and research facilities – Guidance for people who work in or run indoor labs and research facilities and similar environments
  • Offices and contact centres – Guidance for people who work in or run offices, contact centres and similar indoor environments
  • Restaurants offering takeaway or delivery – Guidance for people who work in or run restaurants offering takeaway or delivery services.
  • Shops and branches – Guidance for people who work in or run shops, branches, stores or similar environments.
  • Vehicles – Guidance for people who work in or from vehicles, including couriers, mobile workers, lorry drivers, on-site transit and work vehicles, field forces and similar.

Production and supply of ventilator components

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy is looking for organisations who can support in the supply of ventilators and ventilator components across the United Kingdom as part of the government’s response to COVID-19.

You can find more information on the production and supply of ventilator components here.

Useful contacts