Help for your business during Coronavirus (Covid-19)

Support for businesses through Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Business support

Find out how to run your business safely and any financial support you may be eligible for on the Government's business support pages.

The government has announced an extension to the furlough scheme and increased self-employed support into spring 2021.

How we’re helping

Buy Local

Buy Local is our free website to support businesses and tradespeople in North Yorkshire as well as help people find local services available to them.

We're urging all eligible traders and businesses to register on the Buy Local website as soon as possible - it's free and easy to join.

All businesses on the Buy Local directory are required to abide by government guidelines on operating under coronavirus restrictions.

Instant payments

To help businesses we’re now paying small and medium sized suppliers (SMEs) instantly, subject to bank clearing times, instead of the standard 30-day period.

We'll review this approach in March.

To help us do this we’re asking all suppliers to now email their invoices to their named contact rather than sending them by post. If you already send your invoices via email to then please continue to do so.

If you don’t have a named contact then you need to get in touch with the relevant service or department before sending the invoice. As a minimum, invoices need the name and contact number of the individual who place the order or they won’t be paid.

We also appreciate that some suppliers may struggle to fully meet their contractual obligations due to the current crisis. If you feel this is the case you should contact your normal contract manager or

Free trading standards advice

Our trading standards team is offering free advice until March 2021 to help support businesses based in North Yorkshire. The team can provide advice on all aspects of trading standards law, including helping businesses to diversify into different product areas or to move their business online or to a takeaway service. 

Businesses that would like to use the service can contact the team on 01609 780780 or at for more details or for advice on a specific query.

Government help for businesses

You can find information regarding the government's coronavirus support available to businesses on their website. This includes information on how to:

You can also see the government's Winter Economy Plan which it has set out to protect jobs and support businesses over the coming months. Central to this plan is a new Job Support Scheme and an extension to the Self Employment Income Support Scheme.

Help from district councils

District Councils are responsible for administering the business rate relief, business rates holiday and grant funding packages.

You do not need to take any action if you have a retail, hospitality, leisure or nursery business that qualifies for the 12-month business rate holiday. The discount will be applied to the next council tax bill from your District Council in April 2020.

You also do not need to take any action about the grant funding. District Councils will be directly contacting businesses that are eligible. 

Each District Council has set up an information page about their support for businesses:

Government support for individuals

  • If you're not able to be furloughed or will not qualify for Self Employment Income Support but become unemployed, you can apply for Universal Credit which has been enhanced by £1,000 a year
  • Nearly £1 billion of additional support has been announced for renters, through increases to housing benefit and Universal Credit
  • From April, Local Housing Allowance rates will pay for at least 30% of market rents in each area
  • Mortgage lenders will offer a six month payment holiday to borrowers who find they are unable to pay their mortgage, without effecting their credit rating
  • A ban has been introduced on evictions and protection increased for renters
  • A hardship fund for economically vulnerable households will be used to provide council tax relief, alongside existing local council tax support schemes. District councils will provide all recipients of working age local council tax support (LCTS) during the financial year 2020-21. They will also use their discretionary powers to enable a further reduction, outside of the normal LCTS, of £150.  Eligibility will be assessed by the billing authority and applied accordingly
  • The Department for Work and Pensions has issued guidance on coronavirus and claiming benefits

Help from the Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP)

There is guidance on the LEP website to give business clarity in find and applying for support

A regional Local Authority Forum has been created to ensure we can make support clear and accessible for the region’s businesses.

Businesses can continue to access existing sources of finance as well as a number of useful webinars on the Growth Hub.