Borough Market traders are among the small businesses now eligible for Government support during the COVID-19 crisis after ministers widened the eligibility criteria.
Small businesses which do not directly pay business rates – a group which includes many market traders – had not been able to apply for the small business support fund set up by the Government and administered by local councils.
As we reported last month, Bermondsey and Old Southwark MP Neil Coyle wrote to chancellor Rishi Sunak to highlight the issue.
Darren Henaghan, managing director of Borough Market, said: "Our traders had effectively fallen through the gaps in the floorboard of the government scheme for small businesses and have suffered considerably as a result.
"Thankfully Neil Coyle was alive to the issue and campaigned to get this loophole closed. We are hugely grateful to him."
Neil Coyle said: "In the current circumstances, the traders deserve all the support they can get. I am delighted that this unfortunate discrepancy has been resolved.
"Due to the unique make-up of the market, the traders were denied access to the grants available to other small businesses. I am sure this was unintentional. Having already come through the 2017 London Bridge terror attacks to prosper again, it is crucial the traders get support at this crucial time."
It is anticipated that approximately 120 traders from the market's community will be entitled to the grants of up to £25,000.
The extra Government funding is available to businesses in shared spaces, regular market traders, small charity properties that would meet the criteria for Small Business Rates Relief, and bed and breakfasts that pay council tax rather than business rates. Councils will have further discretion to determine the exact criteria for eligibility.
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