5th February 2021
Bounce Back Loans – If you have a BBL and are using the ‘Pay as you Grow’ scheme to repay the loan, the FCA published guidance to the banks this week which sets out what is expected of them when dealing with you as a customer. In essence the banks are being told to be supportive. If you are in this position then it is well worth taking a look at the FCA guidance here, in case you need to have a conversation with your bank at any point. https://www.fca.org.uk/publication/finalised-guidance/bounce-back-loans-scheme-guidance-firms-pay-as-you-grow-options.pdf
CBILS – Whilst on finance, if anyone is having any difficulty with their bank over extension or repayment of any CBILS finance can you let me know. I suspect there is an issue brewing here as I have had one or two complaints about bank behaviour. If this is a more general trend we will need to escalate this to the CBI.
Lobbying – There has not been much movement on our issues within government this week. We have written to the Chancellor on VAT, submitted our request and evidence to the Scottish Government for a special machine suppliers’ fund, and met with Welsh Government officials to again bang the drum about grants for AGCs but also to get the conversation started on re-opening them as non-essential retail. In England our lobbying on this same ask has shifted to the Cabinet Office. Please do send the template or your own letters to elected representatives as requested as these are getting cut through as they sit alongside our direct engagement and the series of Parliamentary Questions we have had tabled.
ADR – Bacta ADR Service, which provides an alternative dispute resolution mechanism for the amusement machine and allied sectors, is overhauling its look and feel. A new website will be launched shortly and we have set up a dedicated telephone number. Users of the service will need to update any collateral they have with this new number. The old one will still work for a while but we will have to switch it off in a few months’ time. The new number is: 01903 873785.
Miles for Smiles – I hope everyone has picked up on our Miles for Smiles initiative either through my Updates, our Newsletter yesterday or via word of mouth. We have over 100 Smilers on our books (including a very tired John White!) running, walking, cycling or Joe Wickesing their way through lockdown and shifting a few pounds in the process – something very much needed in my case. If you want to sign up please get in touch with Steph Norbury (firstname.lastname@example.org) and do take a look at our Facebook page to see some of the Happy Smilers putting their bodies on the line and giving 110% for Charity. https://www.facebook.com/bactauk