Liverpool region to share £8m Trading on Scheme funds to help SME recovery

Mayor of Liverpool, Joanne Anderson

Having successfully distributed more than £44m in emergency funding to more than 4,000 businesses across Merseyside, the Liverpool City Region has secured a further £8.1m to support local businesses.

The original £44m from the Government’s Additional Restrictions Grant scheme was secured by Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram following negotiations with government when the city region was first put into Tier Three restrictions in October 2020.

This further £8.1m in funding – to be known as the Trading On Scheme – will be allocated to the city region’s six local authorities, proportionate to population. This latest support scheme will specifically support small or medium-sized businesses, with between 10 and 249 employees.

In a joint statement, Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, Cllr Mike Wharton, leader, Halton Borough Council, Cllr Graham Morgan, leader, Knowsley Borough Council, Joanne Anderson, Mayor of Liverpool, Cllr Ian Maher, leader, Sefton Borough Council, Cllr David Baines, leader, St Helens Borough Council and Cllr Janette Williamson, leader, Wirral Borough Council, said: “Throughout the past 18 months we have worked together to project our region from the biggest challenge it has faced since the war.

“That collaboration, creativity and hard work resulted in millions of pounds of support that helped sustain thousands of businesses in all parts of our region through the worst of the pandemic.

“More than £44m was distributed to more than 4,000 businesses, saving many more thousands of jobs and livelihoods in the process. We start our recovery from a much stronger position as a result.”

They added: “That recovery is already well under way and received a massive boost in May, with the launch of Mayor Steve Rotheram’s £150m COVID Recovery Fund, which has allowed our region to get a headstart on the rest of the country.

“Today, we’re launching another £8.1m of funding for SMEs, who make up a massive chunk of the local economy.

“Together, we are making sure that the Liverpool City Region has the fastest and strongest recovery possible, with no-one left behind.”

The Government requires each council to exercise its local knowledge and judgment in devising a grant scheme that aligns best with the particular economic characteristics of its area by funding those businesses that have been severely impacted by COVID-19.

Because of this and the limited amount of funding available, the amounts of grant funding for individual businesses will vary across different local authority areas.

Liverpool Council will receive £2,592,501.84; Wirral £1,686,687.94; Sefton £1,438,890.58; St Helens £940,172.35; Knowsley £785,559.29; and Halton £673,634.01. Applications will open on Monday, October 25.