Banner photo for the news story 'COVID Update 14'

Dear BID Member, we hope that you and your families are remaining well and staying safe.

Hinckley BID is in regular contact with the Borough Council, British BIDS, LCC, our MP Dr Luke Evans and key Government websites to bring you the latest information if we feel it might be of use. We have also lobbied our MP and various organisations to try to find solutions for those businesses who as yet are not eligible for a grant through no fault of their own. Please remember that we are here for you, our BID members, so whatever the concern please don’t hesitate to contact us if we can be of any help. Although we are working remotely from home, we have full IT facilities and can video conference through Zoom.

While we work remotely, our office landline, 01455 698494, has been diverted to my mobile and I am always available.

The team’s direct e-mail and mobile telephone numbers are as follows:

Steve Wegerif
Mobile: 07709 394841

Toni Scott
Mobile: 07821 123026

Martina Smullen
Mobile: 07496 839304

We have some updates for your attention please:

1. Be aware – offers of financial support and loans help may not be what they seem.

It has come to our attention that a number of unscrupulous organisations with legitimate sounding names are ‘offering help to small businesses who are trying to claim Grants or Loans’. Please be very careful to whom you give any information – they may be pretending to offer help whilst using your details to scam your legitimate claim for themselves.

2. Warning from the police – Fake meds, fake COVID testing kits and masks.

Fraudsters really are capitalising on the fear of the current COVID-19 pandemic. They will stop at nothing to part you and your money. There are no medicines licensed for the treatment or prevention of COVID-19 and no official self-testing kits approved for home use. Criminals are exploiting the COVID-19 outbreak by selling fake medical products online.

For more advice visit Action Fraud's website here.

Please don't assume everyone knows - please do share this information with your friends, family and colleagues. Help us by pledging to tell two others. However, we do recommend you only share information from reliable sources like NHS, Public Health England and .Gov websites or social media.

3. Grant payments from HBBC Revenues

Many businesses have been contacted and have successfully completed the online application for the business support grants. Where correctly applied these businesses have either recently received the funds or will do shortly and we are very grateful to the staff at HBBC who have worked tirelessly to make this happen as quickly as possible. Once individual applications have been signed-off (ie the ‘memorable word’ stage has been successfully completed) the HBBC staff are legally required to undertake a number of other anti-fraud security checks before the funds are released which of course takes a few days. Also, the payments are made via the Bankers' Automated Clearing System (BACS) and take about three working days to clear. Not only have the team at HBBC the whole of our Borough to service, but because they work in Partnership with other Leicestershire areas they have had to deal with many more applications from those areas as well.

4. The Great Hinckley BID Family Cooking Competition – Open For Entry – £400 in prizes!

To support those who are hunkered down at home, we have launched a FREE family cooking competition, inviting residents of the Borough of Hinckley and Bosworth to create an ‘Interesting Dish’ from any ingredient or ‘bits and pieces’ they might have lying around, to be in with the chance of WINNING a £100 voucher to spend in any Hinckley Town centre Business of their choice once they have re-opened! We are also offering 2 Runner Up prizes of £50, and in addition, a £25 prize will be awarded for each of 2 separate entries for the following categories:

  • Most colourful dish on the plate
  • The Winning dish prepared by children aged 11 and under
  • The healthiest dish
  • The most amusing dish

When the virus is defeated (and it will be!) we propose to collect the best Recipes and, together with their picture and surname of the family who created it, print them into a booklet – it will be for sale with ALL proceeds going to a local NHS Staff Relief Fund.

The competition will run until 30th April and we would be delighted to welcome as many entries as we can get. We have already shared the competition details through our Newsletter and on our various social media platforms. Please feel free to share the competition details with family and friends and why not have a go yourself !!

If you would like any additional information about the competition, please get in touch by emailing or call 01455 698494.

Enter the Cooking Competition!

5. Are you an ‘Essential Business or Service’?

We are currently compiling a list of our BID member businesses that fall into this category and which are still open to the public. This will be published on our website and shared on our BID social media and on Wonderful Hinckley which we jointly fund with HBBC. If you would like to appear on the list, please email with the following information:

  • Business Name
  • Service/Goods available
  • Current/Revised opening times
  • Contact telephone number
  • Website (if applicable)

6. Restaurants & Take-Aways

If you are one of the many great town centre restaurants / pubs / takeaways that are still currently offering a take-away service, please get in touch to let us know. Please provide the information requested above, along with a .pdf attachment or .jpg image of your take-away menu and any relevant delivery/collection information. We will temporarily add this to your BID website profile and share on social media. Naturally, any service must comply with government guidance on essential services and social distancing requirements.

Our e-newsletter, Hinckley BID Buzz, has a distribution of over 14,000 local recipients, all of whom are your potential customers. We would be delighted to get your business messages out to them and are determined that once businesses re-open, our members are the first port of call for local shoppers.

7. Face Masks

According to various media, when some sectors of society and business are eventually allowed to venture out, there may be a legal requirement for all to wear face masks until a vaccine is available. If you choose to source masks – please check your supplier out very carefully. Many people are currently paying for masks online but no goods are arriving as these are SCAM suppliers. If the wearing of masks does become a requirement, we feel sure that the Authorities will provide a list of approved suppliers.

8. Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – HOW TO CLAIM

Extension to Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme eligibility (CJRS) and an update on how to claim (if in doubt please ask your accountant).

The eligibility cut-off date for the CJRS has been extended from 28 February to 19 March 2020. For employees to be eligible you must have made a submission notifying HMRC of payment of that employee on or before 19 March 2020.

This also means that employees that were employed as of 28 February 2020 and on payroll and were made redundant or stopped working for you after that, and prior to 19 March 2020, can also qualify for the scheme if you re-employ them and put them on furlough.

How to claim

The online claim service will be launched on GOV.UK on 20‌‌ April 2020.

The only way to make a claim is online – the service should be simple to use and there will be support available at GOV.UK; this will include help with calculating the amount you can claim. UKFT members can also get help and advice from UKFT.

Claims will be paid within 6 working days.

HMRC cannot answer any queries from employees – they will need to raise these with you.

Information you will need before you make a claim

In order to claim you will need to have the following before 20‌‌ April 2020:

  1. A Government Gateway ID and password – if you don’t already have a one click here
  2. Be enrolled for PAYE online – if you aren’t registered yet click here. Importantly HMRC has removed the requirement for the PAYE Online account to be verified via a posted activation code which should significantly minimise any delays.
  3. The bank account number and sort code for HMRC to use when they pay your claim
  4. The name and phone number of the person in your business for HMRC to call with any questions
  5. Your Self-Assessment UTR (Unique Tax Reference), Company UTR or CRN (Company Registration Number)
  6. The following information for each furloughed employee you will be claiming for:
    1. Name
    2. National Insurance number
    3. Claim period and claim amount
    4. PAYE/employee number (optional)
  7. The total amount being claimed for all employees and the total furlough period.

If you have fewer than 100 furloughed staff – you will need to input information directly into the system for each employee.

If you have 100 or more furloughed staff – you will need to upload a file with information for each employee; HMRC will accept the following file types: .xls .xlsx .csv .ods.

If you want an agent to act for you

Agents authorised to act for you on PAYE matters can make the claim on your behalf using their ID and password. You will need to tell your agent which UK bank account you want the grant to be paid into.

You should retain all records and calculations in respect of your claims.

Please stay safe and well, we are here if we can be of help.