Thousands of business still waiting for emergency financial support

Thousands of business still waiting for emergency financial support


Thousands of businesses are still waiting for crucial emergency financial support to help weather the coronavirus crisis, according to data gathered by the BBC Shared Data Unit.

As concerns grew over the economic impact of lockdown, on 17 March the government announced emergency grants to help support small and rural businesses, as well as retailers.

The lump sums of £10,000 through the Small Business Grant Fund and £25,000 through the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund, were intended to help minimise disruption to cash flows. Over a month later, only half the money promised has been distributed to SMEs identified by local authorities.

Whilst those who have received the grant say it can ‘make all the difference’, but thousands of small business owners are facing tough decisions while waiting for the money to come through.

A microbusiness owner who is waiting on funds said he had invested £50,000 of his own money to pay suppliers and the impact of the delay was ‘catastrophic’.

Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) National Chair Mike Cherry said: “For many small businesses, access to these grants will decide the fate of their futures, and it’s excellent to see so many local authorities across England getting the money into the hands of those who need it most.

“Some councils have already handed out more than 80% of their grants, with a handful already reaching or about to reach 100%. 

“However other areas barely 10-20% of the grants have been issued, it’s those areas that must act now if they want to see small businesses survive on their local high streets when we reach the other side of this crisis.

The data is taken from the government monitoring statistics, with proportional calculations from the unit and amendments for Rutland County Council.

Here are the statistics for London borough:

Local AuthorityInitial funding allocationNumber of  (businesses) that the local authority has identified may be in scope to receive a grant as at 19 ApilNumber of grant payments made to hereditaments (businesses) as at 19 AprilValue of payments (£)% businesses paid% amount paidAverage sum paid
London Borough of Harrow£42,216,0003320464£8,510,00013.9820.16£18,341
London Borough of Ealing£68,212,00050004170£56,160,00083.4082.33£13,468
London Borough of Richmond£41,610,00029001872£31,590,00064.5575.92£16,875
London Borough of Islington£57,768,00036182606£43,535,00072.0375.36£16,706
London Borough of Merton£29,318,00020521494£20,280,00072.8169.17£13,574
London Borough of Wandsworth£58,192,00042002469£40,035,00058.7968.80£16,215
London Borough of Sutton£28,160,00020091470£18,840,00073.1766.90£12,816
London Borough of Enfield£50,182,00035122230£33,535,00063.5066.83£15,038
London Borough of Greenwich£36,852,00028621910£23,855,00066.7464.73£12,490
London Borough of Southwark£70,062,00038632852£42,050,00073.8360.02£14,744
London Borough of Tower Hamlets£78,818,00057703171£47,160,00054.9659.83£14,872
London Borough of Camden£70,150,00043531755£42,090,00040.3260.00£23,983
London Borough of Newham£58,660,00042171899£28,500,00045.0348.59£15,008
London Borough of Hackney£64,622,00045981972£30,205,00042.8946.74£15,317
London Borough of Redbridge£49,612,00036361439£23,000,00039.5846.36£15,983
London Borough of Barnet£65,756,00042591759£30,340,00041.3046.14£17,248
London Borough of Havering£40,532,00027761392£18,660,00050.1446.04£13,405
London Borough of Lambeth£57,500,00038921839£25,500,00047.2544.35£13,866
City of London£14,740,0001338352£6,505,00026.3144.13£18,480
London Borough of Brent£64,386,00044111832£27,905,00041.5343.34£15,232
London Borough of Hillingdon£45,756,00033211264£18,175,00038.0639.72£14,379
London Borough of Barking and Dagenham£26,938,0002029654£9,555,00032.2335.47£14,610
London Borough of Bexley£36,438,00027151047£12,855,00038.5635.28£12,278
London Borough of Croydon£60,588,00042181386£20,100,00032.8633.17£14,502
London Borough of Waltham Forest£54,066,00036241083£16,755,00029.8830.99£15,471
London Borough of Hounslow£36,520,0002541666£11,085,00026.2130.35£16,644
London Borough of Hammersmith and Fulham£49,208,0002874789£14,715,00027.4529.90£18,650
London Borough of Lewisham£47,004,00036431052£13,970,00028.8829.72£13,279
London Borough of Bromley£52,482,0003316870£14,760,00026.2428.12£16,966
London Borough of Haringey£56,312,0005947719£12,125,00012.0921.53£16,864
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