Covid 19 Business Grants Eligibility Criteria

Covid 19 Business Grants Eligibility Criteria

This page will provide you with details of the eligibility criteria and grant value for a range of Covid 19 business grants to support businesses through the Covid-19 restrictions.

It only includes information on grants that remain open for applications. For information on closed schemes, contact

On this page:

Covid 19 Business Grants – open from April 2021

Restart Grants

Eligible businesses for Restart Grants must have been trading on 1 April 21, occupy commercial premises within Newcastle, and use these premises to provide in-person services. At present, these premises must be registered for Business Rates as of 1 April 2021 (we are examining whether we can extend this to non-rated commercial premises using discretionary funding).

Businesses must fall into one of two strands to be eligible:

Strand One: Non-essential retail

This applies to retailers that have been required to close during the lockdown restrictions. It does NOT include businesses that have been able to remain open, such as food retailers, convenience stores, newsagents, banks, building societies and post offices, garden centres or wholesalers.

Strand Two: Hospitality, Leisure, Accommodation, Gyms and Personal Care

This includes the following businesses:

  • Hospitality – pubs, restaurants, cafes and other similar venues
  • Leisure - entertainment, culture and recreation venues
  • Accommodation – hotels and hostels catering for short-term visitors
  • Gyms and sports facilities
  • Personal care such as beauty, hair, body care,aesthetics and wellbeing

You can check whether you are eligible for a Restart Grant on this page.

Grant amount: one-off grant value

Rateable value

Strand One

Strand Two

Exactly £15,000 or under



Over £15,000 and less than £51,000



Exactly £51,000 or above



Essential Business Grants

The Essential Business Grants Scheme available cover two specific sets of businesses: 

A: Taxi Drivers 

Taxi drivers who held a valid Taxi Driver Licence with Newcastle City Council on 31/12/2020. Grants will be a one-off payment of £250.  

B: Other ‘Essential’ Businesses 

Business must meet the following criteria: 

  • operate from commercial premises in Newcastle 

  • have not been able to receive a Covid-19 Winter Grant due to the eligibility criteria 

  • have experienced a significant financial impact due to the Covid-19 restrictions 

  • be small or medium sized (large businesses are not eligible) 

To access this grant, businesses will need to provide evidence of their commercial premises and the financial impact experienced. Grants will be a one-off payment of £4,000.  

This funding is limited and will be allocated in order of applications received, so we cannot guarantee that all businesses that meet the criteria will receive funding. 

Springback Grants

In recognition of the challenges faced by businesses in preparing for the reopening of the economy, the ‘Springback Grant’ provides a one-off grant of £1,500 to help businesses make adequate adaptations and preparations. Springback grants are available to all businesses, including business without commercial premises, who we have been unable to support previously.

To be eligible for this grant, businesses must:

  • Be able to evidence they have been actively trading from a property in Newcastle prior to the 1st April 2021 (residential or commercial)
  • Have not been eligible to receive a Covid-19 Winter Grant of more than £500 from Newcastle City Council to date
  • Have business costs to meet in re-opening or adapting their business, that the grant would be spent on. There is no definitive list of what these costs would be, nor any deadline by which the business needs to spend the money.

Applicants must have been registered as Newcastle residents within our Council Tax records prior to the 1st April 2021. Applicants must be able to provide details of their Council Tax records when applying.

A business can receive no more than one Springback Grant. Similarly, a Newcastle resident can only apply for one Springback Grant. Should a Newcastle resident be responsible for more than one business that would meet the eligibility criteria, they should apply on behalf of the business that would typically generate the most income.

Due to a limited availability of funding, applications will be verified and approved according to the following priorities:

  • 1st: Businesses that have legally being prevented from trading due to Covid-19 restrictions AND have not received any Government grant support (e.g. Self Employed Income Support Scheme; Job Retention Scheme; or £250 Taxi Driver scheme), in the order in which they are received
  • 2nd. Business that have suffered a significant economic impact due to Covid-19 restrictions AND have not received any Government grant support (e.g. Self Employed Income Support Scheme; Job Retention Scheme; or £250 Taxi Driver scheme), in the order in which they are received
  • 3rd. Business that have suffered a significant economic impact due to Covid-19 restrictions AND have not received Self Employed Income Support Scheme or the Job Retention Scheme, in the order in which they are received
  • 4th. All remaining eligible applications in the order in which they are received

We retain the right to amend or close the scheme at any time. Our decisions are final, and there is no appeals process.

Local Restrictions Support Grant – 18 September 2020 to 31 March 2021 

These grants are now closed to new applications, but we will continue to process applications received before 31 March 2021 up to end April 21. 

  • You must have been forced to close by Government (a full list of those sectors can be found here); or to change the nature of the business (e.g. move to a collection and delivery service) due to the national lockdown;or be able to evidence that your activity is intrinsically linked to the supply chains of the Hospitality, Leisure and Accommodation sectors and have therefore suffered a significant fall in demand. 

  • You must operate from commercial premises located within Newcastle upon Tyne. If your premises are on the business rates valuation list, you must provide relevant account details. If your premises are not on the business rates valuation list, you must be able to provide evidence of ongoing fixed commercial property-related costs, evidenced through the following: signed lease; bank statements, utility bills. One grant award per business premises. 

  • Businesses in shared premises will need to be able to demonstrate they are independent of each other, they incur fixed premises costs and you have a legal agreement for that space, e.g. tenancy agreement. 

  • You must have been established and trading prior to the introduction of national restrictions (5 Nov). 

  • Businesses that were forced to close due to national restrictions imposed in March, and have never been allowed to reopen (e.g. nightclubs) are also eligible for support during the period of National Restrictions.  

  • Accommodation providers must be able to provide at least one form of evidence listed below upon request: 

    • Planning permission for change of use to a B&B; 

    • A fire certificate obtained when setting up the accommodation business to get business insurance policy and public liability cover; 

    • A “hotel and mobile units television licence”, which covers up to 15 televisions and can be purchased online from TV Licensing; 

    • A music licence from PPL PRS Ltd, if they have a TV in public areas, such as a bar or breakfast room, which has the sound turned on; 

    • A personal and premise alcohol licence, if serving alcohol; 

    • Registered with Newcastle City Council’s Regulatory Services 

    • An up-to-date accreditation with Visit England or the AA with a star rating 

Ineligible Businesses include: 

  • Businesses without ongoing fixed commercial property costs including home based businesses operating from domestic properties, excluding B&Bs 

  • Businesses that can continue to trade because they do not depend on providing direct in person services from premises (e.g accountants) will not be eligible. 

  • Businesses that were in administration, are insolvent on or before 18 Sep 2020, or where a striking-off notice has been made. 

  • Business that have already received the maximum level of state aid permissible (see below). 

The amount you will get will depend on the 'rateable-value' of your business property on 5th November 2020. 

Grant amount

Rateable value on 5 November 2020

Grant per 14-day period

Exactly £15,000 or under


Over £15,000 and less than £51,000


Exactly £51,000 or above


 Where your business does not have a rateable value, your grant level will be set at the lower level. You can check the 'rateable-value' of your property at GOV.UK: Find your business rates valuation 

The Council will not approve or make payment of a further grant to a business that has already received a Local Restrictions Support Grant or partial grant for the same property, passed on by a landlord.  

Grant Award Process

The Council has been awarded limited funds from Government for these scheme and it is expected that there will be a high level of demand from business. 

Grant awards will be made at the levels set out above to applicants satisfying the above eligibility criteria, subject to the availability of resources. 

Applications for grant will be made through a dedicated online grant portal and business will be required to confirm they are eligible for the scheme(s). 

A grant may be paid for each qualifying property from which an applicant business operates eligible activity. A separate application must be submitted for each eligible property. 

Payments will be made directly to approved recipients’ bank accounts by electronic transfer. 

Beneficiaries will receive written confirmation stating that by accepting the grant payment, the business confirms that they are eligible for the grant scheme, including that any payments accepted will be subject to state aid requirements. 

Subsidy Control 

The United Kingdom has now left the European Union, and there is a new UK subsidy control regime. The previous State aid rules no longer apply in most circumstances. 

Under this new subsidy control regime, the Council is permitted to award an individual/organisation up to approximately £335,000 (as of 2 March 2021, subject to currency fluctuations) in any three fiscal years. Funding is subject to this allowance not being exceeded during that period. This £335,000 allowance also includes any previous funding you/your organisation received as de minimis State aid (under the previous regime). Applicants will be required to declare any such subsidy/aid received in the last three years. 

(Further information on this allowance can be found within Section 5.1 of the guidance) 

Where this limit has been exceeded, it may still be possible for the Council to provide funding support. Applicants in this position should contact for further details.  

For example it may be possible, subject to eligibility, to provide additional funding under the COVID-19 Business Grant Allowance or COVID-19 Business Grant Special Allowance. 

Other Information 

Grant income received by a business is taxable. Only businesses which make an overall profit once grant income is included will be subject to tax. 

The Government and the Council will not accept deliberate manipulation and fraud and any business falsifying their records to gain grant money will face prosecution and any funding issued will be subject to claw back, as may any grants paid in error. 

The Council does not accept any liability for any issues that may arise for businesses because of applying for, receiving, or not receiving grant payments under this scheme. 

The Council reserves the right to vary the terms, or close the schemes at any time, and without notice, should it be necessary to do so. 

There is no appeal process. 

Enquiries about the scheme can be emailed to 

Go here  to go back to the business support page.

[1] As defined in Article 2(18) of the General Block Exemption Regulation

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