11th March 2021
Commercial Evictions ban extended – The Housing Secretary, Robert Jenrick, today announced that the Government has extended the ban on commercial evictions until 30 June. In addition, the Government has also launched a call for evidence on commercial rents to help monitor the overall progress of negotiations between tenants and landlords. The call for evidence will also set out potential steps that government could take after 30 June, ranging from a phased withdrawal of current protections to legislative options targeted at those businesses most impacted by COVID-19. This call for evidence will inform a review of commercial landlord and tenant legislation later this year and will consider a broad range of issues including the Landlord & Tenant Act 1954 Part II, different models of rent payment, and the impact of Coronavirus on the market.
Further details can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/further-support-for-commercial-and-residential-tenants
VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme – The VAT Deferral New Payment Scheme was launched on 23 February and allows businesses to:
- pay deferred VAT in equal instalments, interest free
- choose the number of instalments, from 2 to 11 (depending on when the business join the scheme)
The guidance has been updated so that, from today, businesses on the VAT Annual Accounting Scheme or the VAT Payment on Account Scheme, can now join this scheme. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/deferral-of-vat-payments-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19
England – Just a quick reminder if there is anyone who hasn’t applied for the Open or Closed Local Restrictions Support Grants the applications to do so close on 31st March.
AGC Re-Opening – In England we are awaiting a response to our legal letter to the Government on why we are not going to be permitted to open alongside other non-essential retail. In Wales we will hear on Friday whether our request has been successful and we should hear in Scotland next week. You may have noticed that we have invested in a Social Media campaign on this, and our other lobbying asks which is getting good click throughs. Please like any Tweets, Facebook posts or Instagram posts so we can get the message as widely distributed as possible.
Petitions – We are tabling government petitions on AGC re-opening and a 5% VAT rate next week. As above these will need members to help in getting as many signatures as possible. More than 10,000 and the Government has to respond formally. More than 100,000 there has to be a debate.
Miles for Smiles – With Mr Motivator, Tony Glanville, and his mother Mamma G, giving all the bacta smilers a lift in their fundraising efforts (take a look at bacta’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/bactauk to see their hilarious videos) it is now over to everyone else to find a few bob down the back of the sofa and give a boost to the fundraising effort which is now well over £1000. We want to get to £5000 and hopefully beyond. Please go to https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/bactamilesforsmiles and make a donation no matter how small. It is really appreciated.
Feedback – Please keep providing feedback on whether you are getting grants and/or any feedback from correspondence with MPs. I am particularly keen to hear whether single site operators and manufacturers/distributors are getting anything now the guidance is explicit in referencing the hospitality supply chain. This is really useful in our meetings with MPs, officials and Ministers. We met Shadow Gambling and Tourism Minister Alex Sobel on Friday and we have a meeting with the new Minister, John Whittingdale next week.