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Reach Out and Connect: with Paul Scully MP and Stephen Hammond MP

May 6, 2020
General News
Diana at Merton Chamber

On Tuesday 5 May, Merton Chamber of Commerce held a Reach Out and Connect video meeting with MPs Paul Scully, Minister for Small Business, Consumers & Labour Markets and Minister for London, as well as Stephen Hammond who is the MP for Wimbledon.

The meeting was also joined by Cllr Stephen Alambritis, Leader of Merton Council and all three BIDS in the borough, Love Wimbledon, SWBA and Willow Lane.

This event is one of a number of zoom video sessions that we have initiated to support members and other local businesses during the Coronavirus crisis. This has provided Merton Chamber of Commerce with very effective grass roots connectivity and feedback to lobby local, regional and national Government on their behalf.

A recording of the meeting can be viewed via YouTube:

A summary of topics covered:

- An update on the Government’s support for business – the Business Interruption Loan, an update on the Business Retention scheme, Small Business rates grant fund, Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Business rates grant fund. Any changes made or being made to these and whether the Business Retention Scheme will be extended or made more flexible (eg to support return to work as part time)

- Where we are on help for the self employed and reference to those who are IR35 companies.

- The Business Bounce Back loan launched on 4th May

- Further details on the top up grant and how that will be administered through local authorities for businesses that fall between the gaps for help (following the recent announcement on that)

- Latest on the Government’s consideration of the Raise the Bar campaign (increasing the 51k threshold for businesses to be eligible for the £25k business rates associated cash grant)

- Where we are on Lockdown and what will be lifted and when. When businesses might receive guidance, what the plan is for our high streets and also for our arts and creative sector (theatres, music etc)

- And an insight to anything else the Minister can reveal – particularly in relation to the phased return and how that will be managed, with supplies of PPE and school openings

For details of further Reach Out and Connect sessions please go to our What's On section of the website.

Our Thanks to University of Roehampton for supporting our Reach Out and Connect zoom sessions.