Copeland Borough Council has now awarded more than £21.2million to businesses affected by the Coroanvirus pandemic.
The latest figures have been released after a further £702,500 was awarded to 115 businesses in the past week, through the council’s Small Business Discretionary Grant Scheme, which closed on June 15.
These cash grants were provided to business who were not eligible for other Government support schemes.
This is in addition to more than £15 million already provided to 1,319 businesses in Copeland under the small business and the retail, leisure and hospitality grant schemes.
Copeland Council has also provided £5.5 million in Expanded Retail Relief to 480 businesses who do not need to pay any business rates for the full financial year.
One grant recipient said: “Thank you. For the payment. You have changed our lives during this horrendous time.”
Another recipient said: “I am writing this on behalf of my business in Whitehaven to say a true thank you to Copeland Council, and the Government, for our payment we received today, to help keep our business going.
“Whilst we can’t open, this is a lifesaving amount needed for rent and bills to keep our hard work in setting up the business alive – truly grateful.”
Mike Starkie, Mayor of Copeland, said: “Firstly, I’d like to show my sincere gratitude for Copeland Council’s Revenues team who has been working tirelessly, over the past 14 weeks, to make sure that businesses get the cash grants they so desperately needed, as soon as they possibly could.
“They are one of the most proactive teams I’ve ever had the pleasure of working alongside, and the feedback they have received from local business owners has been overwhelmingly positive with the team heaped with praise, and deservedly so.
“I understand it has been an incredibly hard for business, both large and small, in every industry, during the pandemic and the grants we have issued will hopefully provide a lifeline to those worst affected, to get them through these challenging times.
“I am so incredibly proud of the Copeland business community who have not only been so grateful for the support received, but have put their own worries aside to help support others.
“We have seen hospitality businesses feeding key workers, a range of tradesmen and others putting on a weekly parade around the borough, and our local fitness gurus keeping everyone active with their social media sessions.
“I have never been more honoured to be part of such a compassionate community and I think if we can harness all these collective efforts and carry on in the sprit we have seen so far, the future looks incredibly bright for Copeland.”