Southend BID welcomes government funding as work begins on recovery plan

Southend Business Improvement District (BID) has welcomed funding from the government, as it puts together a plan that will outline the best way to begin reopening the town centre.

The government announced that all BID organisations across the country will be given a share of £6.1million to cover costs over the next three months.

While the amount Southend BID will receive has not yet been confirmed, organisation manager Suzanne Gloyne said she was “delighted” by the announcement.

She explained the money would be used to offset the impact of businesses taking advantage of a three-month deferral on their membership fees, which was brought in to help those struggling due to Covid-19.

Ms Gloyne also confirmed that a recovery plan is being put together for town centre businesses but at this stage, she is unable to provide more detail on what that will look like.

She said: “We have been working hard to keep our businesses regularly updated with news and helpful tips, providing the latest information from the government and Southend Council and continue to deliver our Street Ranger service that keeps people and businesses safe.

“We are now in the process of pulling together a recovery plan to ensure resources are spent in the best possible way to safely welcome consumers back into the town.”

Last week the council also confirmed that it had paid out £28.1million of government-funded grants to businesses across the borough. From Monday struggling businesses will also be able to access government Bounce Back Loans which allows them to borrow up to £50,000.

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Steve Shaw

Local Democracy Reporter