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Wedding Venue - Covid-19 Rates Relief

Venue does not obviously fall into one of the defined categories

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I have a client who is a stand-alone wedding venue (not part of a hotel, etc).  On receiving this year's business rates bill, I noticed that last year's rates were still showing as a brought forward amount.  On enquiry with the council, hospitality rates relief has not been given as the businesss does not directly fall into one of the government stated categories.

I was wondering if anybody else had come across this issue and was able to point me towards aguments that would help my case.

The government's definiition is here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploa...

For info, no payments were made in 2020/2021 as (1) we thought the business would qualify and (2) the council didn't chase payment

 

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By Hugo Fair
23rd Jul 2021 23:41

"On enquiry with the council, hospitality rates relief has not been given as the business does not directly fall into one of the government stated categories."
* These grants were funded by central govt but via local councils, who were given the right to interpret the 'rules' and apply priorities according to their own views.
* As far as I know, all these grant schemes are now closed (with all funds distributed).

So the place to 'try your luck' is the council ... but I think you're too late to do so.

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
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By Wanderer
23rd Jul 2021 23:58

Hugo Fair wrote:

* As far as I know, all these grant schemes are now closed (with all funds distributed).

No, OP is referring to the Expanded Retail Discount schemes for discount on business rates, not the various grants. Existed for retail pre Covid & expanded as a result of Covid to include leisure & hospitality. Still going on for 2021/2022:-

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/business-rates-expanded-retai...

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Replying to Wanderer:
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By Hugo Fair
24th Jul 2021 10:34

Thanks ... I'll admit to getting confused about the full range of reliefs & grants offered to businesses since the start of the pandemic (not helped by some almost sharing the name of prior schemes - like Small Business Rates Relief - and many seemingly randomly re-named by disparate Local Councils).

But I see from the link you've provided that the Expanded Retail Discount scheme is also ... funded by central govt but via local councils, who have been given the right to interpret the 'rules' and apply priorities according to their own views.

So, as I said, the place for OP's client to 'try their luck' is their local council.
And, whether or not I was correct to suggest it may be too late to do so, it would certainly have been better to argue the case a year ago (and not just ignore last year's rates bill in the hope it would be 'rebated' - which is what it sounds like has happened).

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