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Surveys needing your Herefordshire response

Coronavirus business support survey

The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership are keen to know what effect coronavirus is having on your business and what support you need now and in the coming weeks. Please complete this survey to have your say.

Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce

This quarter the Chamber have launched a COVID-19 Economic Indicator, focussing on the impact of COVID-19 on businesses. Responses will be collected between 18 May and 8 June.

All responses will be anonymised and given to the government to lobby for business support during the economic restart and recovery from Coronavirus.

It takes just 90 seconds to complete so take part now.

Faster Tourism - Free Business Support for Tourism and Leisure Businesses

We are delighted to be working with Fastershire and the Marches Growth Hub Herefordshire to offer Herefordshire tourism and leisure businesses FREE consultancy sessions.  Use this time to get some one-to-one support to help develop your website, marketing, social media and more. Visit HERE to book your slot. Faster Tourism Event Photo

News and Advice from Visit Britain

Advice for tourism and event businesses affected by COVID-19

Visit Britain are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are working hard to provide you with the very latest information to support your business at this very challenging time. They are feeding in industry concerns to Government via the Tourism Industry Emergency Response Group and will be sharing practical advice as soon as it becomes available publishing the latest announcements and industry information on our dedicated COVID-19 page.

On the link will find the latest information and advice to support your businesses.

All of the information is kept under continuous review and is updated often CLICK HERE

G20 Tourism Ministers’ meeting
The G20 Tourism Ministers held a meeting on COVID-19 on Friday 24 April, Tourism Minister Nigel Huddleston was in attendance and addressed the group. He spoke of the importance of tourism to the UK economy, the Government’s support measures and the regular discussions he is in with the tourism industry about what their priorities are for the recovery period. He highlighted the key areas of concern including how businesses can operate while there are still social distancing measures in place; what further guidance is needed; and whether there is a need for tapered support as businesses adjust.

The G20 Tourism Ministers also issued a statement on COVID-19 outlining their commitments.

NEW Helping the Tourism Industry recover from COVID-19On behalf of the tourism industry, Visit Britain has sent a paper to the Cabinet Office detailing how government can help the tourism industry recover from COVID-19.

The paper is a result of a rapid and extensive consultation conducted across the sector with major industry players who were instrumental in the design of the Tourism Sector Deal, including representatives of Destination Management Organisations (DMOs), businesses, trade bodies and more.

Read the proposals HERE

Latest Advice and Opportunities

All of us in Visit Herefordshire understand that this is a difficult time for you, your business, and your employees. Government measures and advice are being updated as the situation develops so we encourage you to visit these pages and links regularly for the latest position.

We urge all Herefordshire businesses to do everything they can to limit the spread of Covid-19 (coronavirus). Please ensure you and your staff follow government guidance to ensure social distancing.

Business Support and Advice

Offering FREE one to one support services for businesses and in partnership with Herefordshire Council the Marches Growth Hub - Herefordshire is a place where businesses can find out more about funding and finance and wider business support available to local Herefordshire businesses, regardless of size or sector, from pre-start to established businesses.  You can contact the growth hub at

The MARCHES GROWTH HUB would like to share the following information with businesses who are concerned about the impact that COVID-19 will have on our business community. 

Support from Government:

The Chancellor has set out a package of temporary, timely and targeted measures to support businesses through this period of disruption caused by Covid-19, including:

Business Rates Relief:
No business rates payable for 12 months extended to retail, leisure and hospitality businesses of all sizes

Business rates relief for nurseries for 12 month period

Small Business Grant Funding:
Cash grants for up to £25,000 for smaller retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with rateable values between £15,000-£51,000
Cash grants of £10,000 for all businesses in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief and have a rateable value of less than £15,000.

If you have not been contacted and believe you are eligible, you can email quoting your Business Rates property reference number

• The Government has set up a discretionary fund to accommodate certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the small business grants scheme.

Herefordshire Council are urgently developing the Discretionary Grant Fund following the publication of government guidance on 14 May. The guidance asks that local authorities look to prioritise small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces, regular market traders who do not have their own business rates assessment, Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates, and charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.   Further guidance will be set out shortly


Grant Funding Guidance

•  Any business paid a grant through fraud or error will be subject to claw back, deliberate misleading will lead to prosecution

Business Loans:

Coronavirus Future Fund - this scheme will issue convertible loans between £125,000 to £5 million to innovative companies which are facing financing difficulties due to the coronavirus outbreak
• Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme, to support small and medium-sized businesses with access to loans, overdrafts, invoice finance and asset finance
COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility (CCFF) to support larger businesses 
Bounce Back Loan a new 100% government backed loan scheme for small business

Self-employment Income Support Scheme (SEISS) will provide a grant to self-employed individuals or partnerships, worth 80% of their profits up to a cap of £2,500 per month.
•  Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS) Grants scheme will allow you to claim a taxable grant of 80% of your average monthly trading profits, paid out in a single instalment covering 3 months, and capped at £7,500 altogether. This is a temporary scheme, but it may be extended.
Deferral of Self-Assessment Payment the Self- Assessment payment on account that is ordinarily due to be paid to HMRC by 31 July 2020 may now be deferred until January 2021.

• A dedicated helpline has been set up to help self-employed individuals receive support with their tax affairs and discuss bespoke Time to Pay arrangements. Call HMRC’s dedicated helpline on 0800 998 1098.

Further information for the self-employed including increased tax credits and Employment Support Allowance.
Claiming Universal Credit

Cash Flow:
VAT deferral for three months
Ban on evictions for commercial tenants unable to pay rent

Other Business Support:

• For businesses with fewer than 250 employees, the cost of providing 14 days of Statutory Sick Pay per employee will be refunded by the government in full.
• A mortgage holiday of three months for people struggling to make mortgage payments as a result of Coronavirus.
Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme – HMRC will reimburse 80% of wages, up to £2,500 per month to safeguard workers from being made redundant, backdates from 1 March 2020 for at least three months.
• Government have also granted permission for pubs and restaurants to operate as takeaways as part of their coronavirus response.
• Commercial tenants who cannot pay their rent because of COVID-19 will be protected from eviction.

Government guidance and eligibility criteria on the schemes listed above

FAQs for businesses and employers on the schemes listed above

For individual businesses, the first port of call for advice and support is the Government Coronavirus Business Support Portal. The Business Support Helpline 0300 456 3565 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 6pm) is for businesses in England, of all sizes, to speak directly to an advisor.

Still unsure what is available to you?  Use this business support finder to see what support is available for you and your business.

Training and events to support your business:

The Marches Growth Hub calendar has a list of training and events to help support your business.
Fastershire - New FREE courses to help get your business online.

Other useful links include:

Herefordshire Council Coronavirus – Latest News
Marches Growth Hub
Fastershire delivering broadband and business support in Herefordshire in partnership with Herefordshire Council
Herefordshire and Worcestershire Chamber of Commerce
Federation of Small Businesses
Support for businesses from outside government

We recognise that aside from financial and business support you, your supply chain, or your employees may want to access mental health and wellbeing advice. Please visit for details of the local advice and services.


Destination Management Plan

The Herefordshire Sustainable Destination Management Plan 2018 - 2022 was published in 2018 by the Herefordshire Sustainable Food and Tourism Partnership and Visit Herefordshire

To download the Destination Plan click here

The Herefordshire Brand

The Herefordshire brand has been created as a free resource for you - the Herefordshire community; businesses, organisations and individuals to raise awareness our lovely county and your place in it.

We see the brand as a stamp of pride, of credibility and as a genuine opportunity for our previously shy county to stand out.

Using the brand is FREE to use and is subject to application but it’s a very simple process! Just check out the terms and conditions, decide how you want to get involved and then sign up to get your login to access all the brand resources.

The brand guidelines explain how to use the logos, but it can be as simple as choosing a logo and popping it on your website, but if you want some help the brand manager is always happy to advise.

Sign up to the Herefordshire Brand today at

Visit Herefordshire News

Visit Herefordshire (May 2019)

To ensure a continued presence in the county Herefordshire Council are currently running the Visit Herefordshire website, Twitter and Facebook accounts.

Support will be provided to tourism businesses in Herefordshire, with visitor enquiries directed to our local tourist information providers.

We look forward to working with you over the coming months.

If you are a visitor to Herefordshire and want to find our more contact our Tourist Information Centres

To find out how Visit Herefordshire can support your business or for any other enquiries please contact:

Herefordshire in the news

Herefordshire a Great Place to Visit (Rural Media, Jan 2020)

Hererfordshire - The English County Time Forgot (Telegraph Travel, Jan 2020)

Herefordshire a Hidden Gem in England (UNILAD Adventure, Feb 2020)

Crafty getaway: 10 of the best creative boltholes in the UK (Observer Jan 2020)

Herefordshire Destination Business Improvement District (BID) - Feasibility Study

During 2019 businesses across Herefordshire were asked about their priorities and the best way forward for a well-funded and sustainable county wide tourism body for Herefordshire.

The Mosaic Partnership was commissioned by the Herefordshire Sustainable Food & Tourism Partnership (HSFTP) with funding from Herefordshire Council to assess the feasibility of developing a Destination Business Improvement District (BID) for Herefordshire.

Herefordshire faces many of the typical challenges that destinations face, such as, regional, national and international competition for market share and visitors, access and infrastructure issues, modernising and attracting investment, engagement with local residential and business communities and of course organisational and funding stability. It is against this backdrop and the desire to continue to evolve and succeed that the concept of a Business Improvement District (BID) is being investigated. 

The fesibility study provides a summary of the full and detailed report and can be downloaded here

The Marches LEP Visitor Economy Strategy

Launched in January 2020 this is a visitor economy strategy for the Marches - the counties of Shropshire and Herefordshire, and the unitary authority of Telford & Wrekin. It has been commissioned by The Marches Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) to understand the potential of the visitor economy. The strategy sets out what needs to be done to deliver the economic opportunity in a way that supports the environment and fulfils the role of tourism as an enabling sector.

To download a copy of the report click here