Grants & Financial Support

Business Hardship Fund

The Scottish Government announced £40 million in funding for businesses and employees in Scotland affected by the temporary coronavirus (COVID-19) brake restrictions that came into effect from 9 October 2020.

The purpose of this fund is to provide hardship relief to:

Hospitality businesses and gyms unable to operate group classes who are required by the regulations to operate in a restricted way;

Producers/wholesale business supplying primarily perishable supplies to hospitality businesses required by the regulations to close or operate in a restricted way, and who are able to evidence a 25% reduction in turnover during the brake period

Allocation of funding

• Eligible businesses with a Rateable Value (RV) up to and including £51,000 will receive a grant of £1,000
• Eligible businesses with a Rateable Value (RV) of over £51,000 will receive a grant of £1,500
• Eligible businesses operating multiple premises will receive a grant of up to £10,000

The closing date for applications is Tuesday 3rd November 2020 at 5.00 pm.

Download the application form here.

Please note: If experiencing difficulties completing the application form on an IPad or IPhone it may be necessary to download a dedicated PDF reader app from the App store.

You can email [email protected] if you are experiencing difficulties attaching documents or submitting your application.

2020 Retail Hospitality and Leisure Rates Reduction

In the financial year 2020-21, businesses which operate in the retail, hospitality or leisure sectors are entitled to a 100% exemption from the payment of rates.  Qualification for this reduction is based on legislation enacted by the Scottish Government.  The council has deducted this reduction from bills prior to their issue where we believe there is qualification.  If you have not received this reduction and you believe that you should, please contact us by calling 01343 563456 or e-mailing [email protected].

This exemption is administered on the basis of legislation.  It is entirely separate from the Business Grant scheme which the council has administered on behalf of the Scottish Government.  Qualification for a business grant does not automatically translate into qualification for this exemption.

B&B Grant Fund

The B & B Fund Grant Application form in an editable PDF is now live on the Moray Council Website at this link

Guidance can be found within the application form itself. All parts of the application form should be completed in full and emailed with supporting documents to [email protected]

This grant cannot be applied for if you are in receipt of other COVID-19 related business grant support. Please feel free to pass on this information to those who may benefit from it.

Newly Self Employed Hardship Fund

The Newly Self Employed Hardship Fund is a new support mechanism, funded by the Scottish Government, designed and administered by Scottish Local Authorities, to support the Newly Self-Employed who are not covered by already announced support packages.

In order to qualify for support (£2,000 Grant applicants need to have become self-employed since 6th April, 2019)

The editable PDF Application Form for the Newly Self Employed Hardship Fund  is now LIVE and can be downloaded here  (Full details of eligibility are contained in the application form).
Completed applications should then be emailed  to [email protected]  along with supporting documentation. Moray Council will make a grant payment on fully compliant submissions.

Temporary VAT cuts for Hospitality & Tourism Businesses

Temporary VAT cut for food and non-alcoholic drinks 

From 15 July 2020 to 12 January 2021, to support businesses and jobs in the hospitality sector, the reduced (5%) rate of VAT will apply to supplies of food and non-alcoholic drinks from restaurants, pubs, bars, cafés and similar premises across the UK. Further guidance on the scope of this relief will be published by HMRC in the coming days.

Temporary VAT cut for accommodation and attractions 

From 15 July 2020 to 12 January 2021, to support businesses and jobs, the reduced (5%) rate of VAT will apply to supplies of accommodation and admission to attractions across the UK. Further guidance on the scope of this relief will be published by HMRC in the coming days

VAT & Income Tax Support

Please see the below information from the UK Government.

We will support businesses by deferring Valued Added Tax (VAT) payments for 3 months.

Income Tax payments due in July 2020 under the Self-Assessment system may be deferred until January 2021.

VAT Support

For VAT, the deferral will apply from 20 March 2020 until 30 June 2020.


All UK businesses are eligible.

How to access the scheme

This is an automatic offer with no applications required. Businesses will not need to make a VAT payment during this period. Taxpayers will be given until the end of the 2020 to 2021 tax year to pay any liabilities that have accumulated during the deferral period. VAT refunds and reclaims will be paid by the government as normal.

Customers who normally pay by direct debit should cancel their direct debit with their bank if they are unable to pay. Please do so in sufficient time so that HMRC do not attempt to automatically collect on receipt of your VAT return.

Income Tax

For Income Tax Self-Assessment, payments due on the 31 July 2020 may be deferred until 31 January 2021.


You are eligible if you are due to pay your second self-assessment payment on account on 31 July. You do not need to be self-employed to be eligible for the deferment.

The deferment is optional. If you are still able to pay your second payment on account on 31 July you should do so.

How to access the scheme

This is an automatic offer with no applications required. No penalties or interest for late payment will be charged if you defer payment until January 2021.

HMRC have also scaled up their Time to Pay offer to all firms and individuals who are in temporary financial distress as a result of COVID-19 and have outstanding tax liabilities.

More information on support from the UK Government can be found here

Scottish Government’s Business Support- Sources of Finance

The Scottish Government’s Business Support Sources of Funding webpage has further information on sources of finance such as:

  • Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (for SMEs)
  • Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme
  • Help for the self employed
  • Creative Industries

Here is the link to the webpage

Further advice and support available can be found on the Scottish Government’s Business Support website-

UK Government Coronavirus Business Support Finder

The UK Government has launched an online portal that can help business find what support they are entitled to.

Here is the link-

Bounce Back Loan Scheme

The Bounce Back Loan scheme will help small and medium-sized businesses to borrow between £2,000 and £50,000.

The government will guarantee 100% of the loan and there won’t be any fees or interest to pay for the first 12 months.

Loan terms will be up to 6 years. No repayments will be due during the first 12 months. The government will work with lenders to agree a low rate of interest for the remaining period of the loan.

The scheme will be delivered through a network of accredited lenders.

You can apply for a loan if your business:

  • is based in the UK
  • has been negatively affected by coronavirus
  • was not an ‘undertaking in difficulty’ on 31 December 2019

 Who cannot apply
The following businesses are not eligible to apply:

  • banks, insurers and reinsurers (but not insurance brokers)
  • public-sector bodies
  • state-funded primary and secondary schools

 If you’re already claiming funding
You cannot apply if you’re already claiming under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS)(Please note this is a different scheme to the Coronavirus Small Business Support Grant)

If you’ve already received a loan of up to £50,000 under CBILS and would like to transfer it into the Bounce Back Loan scheme, you can arrange this with your lender until 4 November 2020.

How to apply

There are 11 lenders participating in the scheme including many of the main retail banks. You should approach a suitable lender yourself via the lender’s website.

The lender will ask you to fill in a short online application form and self-declare that you are eligible.

The lender will decide whether to offer you a loan or another type of finance and you’ll be responsible for repaying 100% of the amount borrowed.

Find out more here

Aid for private rental landlords – Support to protect tenants

A £5 million fund will offer interest-free loans to landlords whose tenants are having difficulty paying rent during the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis.

The Private Rent Sector Landlord COVID-19 Loan Scheme will offer eligible landlords up to 100% of lost rental income for a single property.

It will support private-sector landlords who are not classified as businesses, have five or less properties to rent and have lost rental income due to tenants unable to pay rent as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic.


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