19 October 2020
This update covers:
- Lockdown in Wales: salons and barbershops must close.
- Financial help for businesses in Northern Ireland affected by local restrictions.
New lockdown in Wales
A two-week ‘fire break’ period will start in Wales at 6pm on Friday, 23 October 2020 and be in place until the start of Monday, 9 November 2020.
Close contact services including salons and barbershops must close. Mobile hairdressers and therapists must not operate during this period.
The Welsh Government has published FAQs about the fire break.
- From Friday at 6pm, everyone must stay at home unless their work is essential.
- No gatherings with people from other households inside or outside (the only exceptions are adults living alone and single parents who will be able to see someone for support).
- Place of worship will close, except to conduct weddings and funerals.
- All non-essential retail, leisure and tourism businesses must close, as well as community centres and libraries.
- Hospitality outlets such as bars and restaurants will close, apart from takeaways.
- Primary and special schools can re-open after half-term, but secondary schools will only re-open for year seven and eight pupils and those doing exams.
- Students must stay in their university accommodation.
- Childcare facilities will stay open.
Financial support for businesses that have to close
Additional financial measures to help businesses in Wales will include:
- An economic resilience fund worth almost £300 million, with £150 million for those directly affected by the ‘fire break’.
- Every business covered by small business rate relief will get £1,000.
- Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses that have to close will get a one-off payment of up to £5,000. This includes salons and barbershops.
- Discretionary grants will be available.
- The £80 Million business package announced last week will increase to £100 million.
Existing support for businesses in Wales affected by coronavirus can be found on the Welsh Government website.
The UK government has already announced support for businesses that are required to close due to local restrictions. This includes:
- A UK-wide expansion of the Job Support Scheme: the government will pay two-thirds of employees’ wages to protect jobs. Find out more on the government website.
New announcement: financial support scheme for businesses in Northern Ireland
The Northern Ireland Executive has announced a financial support scheme for businesses affected by the latest coronavirus restrictions.
Under the scheme businesses will receive the following amounts for every week these restrictions apply:
- Small businesses (up to £15,000 Net Annual Value of the property from which the business operates) – £800.
- Medium businesses (£15,001 - £51,000 Net Annual Value of the property from which the business operates) – £1,200.
- Large businesses (over £51,000 Net Annual Value of the property from which the business operates) – £1,600.
- Read our four nations FAQs.
- Read our FAQs on the government’s safe reopening guidelines.
- Download our free reopening guide for salons and barbershops. Non-members will need to create a free account.
- Our coronavirus FAQs are regularly updated. Check back often for the latest information..
- Read our regularly updated job retention scheme FAQs.
- NHBF Members can download an information poster, email and social media message for clients.
- Members can call our membership team, Monday-Friday, 9-5, on 01234 831965. Please be patient due to the extremely high level of calls we are currently getting.
For legal advice, Members can login to get our 24/7 legal helpline number. Again, please be patient. The legal team is also dealing with a huge number of calls.