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Co-Vid 19 Update – 23-03-2020

With huge amounts of important information being released from local and national Governments and a lengthy conference call this morning with members of business community, organisations and Council, We wanted to provide a comprehensive, yet very important update for both Businesses and residents, read more here:

Caldicot Town Team took part in a conference call this morning which covered lots of different areas relating to the outbreak, both for businesses and residents and with further advice, guidance and information released throughout the day and evening. we have broken it down into two elements; Information for Businesses and Information for Residents. 

Information for Businesses

As previously reported on, Welsh Government are to administer the appropriate grants of £10,000 to eligible businesses with a rateable valuation, and £25,000 for businesses above £12,001 to £51,000. Council’s across Wales have announced that they will be contacting businesses, However, Monmouthshire County Council have designed an online form to help speed up the process. We made calls to Business Enterprise Schemes last week to repeat valid concerns that businesses have bills to pay right now, and that making a call to some 2,500 businesses across the county would take weeks to complete, meaning that staff may be laid off, businesses closing doors and employers going out of business.

Monmouthshire County Council Head of Commercial and People Development; Peter Davies confirmed on the conference call this morning;

Measures have been put in place to make sure businesses get the right support at the right time, that time is right now. We (MCC) do not hold all the banking details of our businesses in Monmouthshire and making calls to be routed to the correct person could take time, so we have a team tasked with making sure that payments can be mobilised into businesses bank accounts as early as Wednesday this week. 

Cath Fallon, Head of Enterprise and Community Animation for Monmouthshire County Council followed;

We have created an easy to complete, online form which asks for primary details from businesses who are eligible for a business grant {of either £10,000 or £25,000} such as Non Domestic Rates reference number, Rateable Value {Found on your latest letter} and bank details. This way we can process payments as soon as they are received into the office and confirmed eligibility. There is a very clear need for this to be done as swiftly as possible and staff have been pulled from other areas of the council to deal with this as soon as we can.

The online form can be found here and then clicking Register Your details under Welsh Government Business Grants

Peter Davies then went onto confirm directly that:

These business grants that have been made available by the Welsh Government are cash grants, processed by Monmouthshire County Council directly into your company’s registered bank and are not repayable

Community and business members from Abergavenny, Chepstow and Caldicot Town Team all echoed each other in the fast implementation of this scheme to speed up payments and have already pledged to help either businesses or the County Council themselves where needed to make the process as smooth as possible. 

Any businesses with concerns regarding the form or any further queries, issues or clarification is more than welcome to contact Aaron Reeks on 07543 332368 or via Text/WhatsApp, through our facebook page or via the contact us section on the website. Of course, you are more than welcome to contact Monmouthshire County Council directly on 01633 644644, although please be advised that you may have to wait longer than usual to get through because of the increase in calls. 

Boris Johnson has this evening released further vital information for businesses in relation to the outbreak of this disease and what this means to businesses.

During his statement to the Country at 8:30pm he has confirmed that the uk will in effect, go into a lockdown from this evening. in his statement he made the following information to businesses. 

  • To ensure compliance with the Government’s instruction to stay at home, we will immediately:
    • close all shops selling non-essential goods,​ including clothing and electronic stores and other premises including libraries, playgrounds and outdoor gyms, and places of worship;
    • we will stop all gatherings of more than two people in public – excluding people you live with

He has been clear that the advice is to not open unless absolutely necessary. 

So what does that mean for my staff?

HM Treasury announced a further series of measures to support people, jobs and businesses. This includes a Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme which will allow employers to continue paying up to 80% of furloughed workers pay costs to a maximum of £2,500 per month and deferring VAT and Income Tax payments. All UK businesses, including those in Wales are eligible for these two new strands of support which are being administered through HMRC. 

The link for more information is available here, However, the new online portal being set up through HMRC is not currently live. (at time of this press release)

Information for Residents

Much like the information for businesses, information has been released in vast quatities over the last few hours and days and we wanted to update you on the key points of what has been released and what this means. Monmouthshire County Council had over the course of the last 2 days put in a wide range of restrictions regarding movement and closed numerous areas. With the new statement from Boris Johnson this is still the case, and more restrictions will be enforced over the coming days/weeks. 

Monmouthshire County Council

  • Closed all childrens parks
  • Closed all skate parks
  • Closed all waste and recycling centres across the county
  • Closed open areas such as Sugarloaf Mountain and other parklands. 
  • Closed all Libraries, One Stop Shops and community centres

We are currently seeking further clarity with regards to recycling and waste, however collections will be continuing as normal for the time being, once we receive further announcements on this, we will distribute amongst our social networks and on our website. 

UK Government

Boris Johnson has made is crystal clear what is and what is not classed as essential travel/trips in relation to the movement of people in his statement this evening;

From this evening I must give the British people a very simple instruction – you must stay at home.

Because the critical thing we must do is stop the disease spreading between households.

That is why people will only be allowed to leave their home for the following very limited purposes:

  • shopping for basic necessities, as infrequently as possible
  • one form of exercise a day – for example a run, walk, or cycle – alone or with members of your household;
  • any medical need, to provide care or to help a vulnerable person; and
  • travelling to and from work, but only where this is absolutely necessary and cannot be done from home.

That’s all – these are the only reasons you should leave your home.

You should not be meeting friends. If your friends ask you to meet, you should say No.

You should not be meeting family members who do not live in your home.

You should not be going shopping except for essentials like food and medicine – and you should do this as little as you can. And use food delivery services where you can.

If you don’t follow the rules the police will have the powers to enforce them, including through fines and dispersing gatherings.

For full details of his statement you can read it in full here or can access it through News channels such as Sky News, BBC News and other outlets. 

Whilst we are in what is effectively a ‘lockdown,’ Caldicot Town Team still stand by its commitment to help and support businesses wherever possible and would urge any businesses to contact us via phone (Aaron Reeks) on 07543 332368 or through our social media channels or our contact forms through the website, If you are happy to do so, we have the ability to contact the direct teams through Monmouthshire County Council to avoid you spending a significant time on the phone and may even have the answers you are seeking ready. Of Course, it goes without saying that Monmouthshire County Council are very busy with calls, if we can help both your business and them, then we will do all we can to do so. 

We will provide further updates as and when we have them and would please encourage you all to stay safe, stay at home and to look after yourself and your loved ones.

As Boris Johnson said this evening, “We will Fight this, we will Beat this and we will come out the other side stronger.” 

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One Thought to “Co-Vid 19 Update – 23-03-2020”

  1. Mike Day

    Thanks for all the updates

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