Strategic Framework Business Fund

About the Fund

If your business is required to close by law, or required by law to modify its operations, you could be entitled to a grant from the Strategic Framework Business Fund from 2 November 2020.  There are two types of grant available:

Temporary Closure Grant – if your business is required by law to close

You could be entitled to a grant every four weeks, of either:

  • £2,000 if your business premises has a rateable value of up to and including £51,000
  • £3,000 if your business premises has a rateable value of £51,001 or above

An upper limit of £15,000 in total in any four-week period will apply to any eligible business operating multiple premises.

Business Restrictions Grant – if your business is specifically required to modify its operations (as specified here)

You could be entitled to a grant every four weeks, of either:

  • £1, 400 if your business premises has a rateable value of up to and including £51,000 
  • £2,100 if your business premises has a rateable value of £51,001 or above

An upper limit of £10,500 in total in any four-week period will apply to any eligible business operating multiple premises

Grants will be paid every four weeks in arrears.  This means that payments for the first four week period, starting 2 November 2020 when the Strategic Framework came into place, will be issued after 30 November 2020.

Once you have applied, if approved you will not need to re-apply if restrictions are extended beyond four weeks.   When restrictions end, any final payment in arrears may be adjusted to reflect the duration of the restrictions to the nearest week.

The Strategic Framework Business Fund is administered by Argyll and Bute Council for businesses based or headquartered in Argyll and Bute.  The criteria for the fund have been set by the Scottish Government and the Council does not have any discretion to vary from them.

Eligibility for the Fund

Whether your business is eligible will depend on where your premises are located and what level of restrictions are in place at any point in time. As Argyll and Bute is currently in Protection Level 2 you can apply if your business is listed below:

Businesses/premises required to close and eligible for a Temporary Closure Grant – Level 2

  • Hospitality - Pubs that do not serve food – regardless of whether they have an outdoor space or not
  • Leisure and entertainment - soft play, funfairs, indoor bowling, theatres,  comedy clubs,  sports stadiums,  conference or exhibition centres,  snooker/pool halls, music venues, casinos, nightclubs
  • Mobile close contact services* - specifically  beauty and nail services (including make-up services), hair removal services, tattoo, piercing and body modification services, fashion design, dress-fitting and tailoring services, indoor portrait photography and art services, massage therapies, complementary and alternative medicine services requiring physical contact or close physical proximity between persons, but not osteopathy and chiropractic services, spa and wellness services * The Scottish Government will publish details of support for mobile close contact services separately, so please do not apply via your local authority.

Businesses eligible for a Business Restrictions Grant – Level 2

  • Hotels and other licensed accommodation – no alcohol after 20:00. Meals served to guests until 22:00. Alcohol allowed in rooms 
  • Hospitality subjected to restrictions such as:
    • Indoor: no admittance after 7pm, closure at 8pm, alcohol only allowed with meal.
    • Outdoor: no admittance after 9.30pm, closure at 10.30pm. Alcohol without a meal allowed - includes restaurants, licenced cafes, pubs, bars, licenced sports  and social clubs and licensed premises

Please do not apply if your business is not included in the above list.  Business eligibility has been specified by the Scottish Government and the Council does not have discretion to change the criteria.

You can apply if:

  • Your business has been directly impacted by restrictions, and the type/sector is specifically mentioned in the list of eligible businesses above
  • You have a business bank account - this is the account your grant will be paid into if your application is successful
  • Your business is registered for non-domestic rates as at 1 November 2020.  If you pay rates through a landlord rather than directly to a  local authority you can still apply but must provide evidence through a copy of the lease agreement
  • Your business was trading on 2 November 2020.  Your premises can have been temporarily closed as at 2 November but you are not eligible if your business was permanently closed or winding up.

Limited companies (including Scottish Charitable Incorporated Organisations), sole traders, trust and partnerships can apply provided they meet the above criteria.

If your business operates multiple premises you can apply for grants for each premise. All premises should be included in one application which should be sent to and processed by the local authority area in which your business is headquartered. You can check protection level by area here if you are applying in Argyll and Bute but also have premises in other local authority areas.

You cannot apply if your business:

  • type or sector is not specifically mentioned in the list of eligible businesses above
  • has breached wider COVID-19 regulations/requirements prior to local restrictions
  • has connections to tax havens, as set out in the Coronavirus (Scotland) (No.2) Act 2020

Application guidance

Application is via an online form and you will not be able to submit an application if you do not meet the criteria or if you do not provide all of the required information. Please read the following guidance before starting your online application.

You will be asked to upload evidence in support of your application. Before you start please make sure you have a scanned copy or photo of the following available:

  • A recent bank statement for your business bank account, clearly showing the account name, account number and sort code; and
  • One of either: Certificate of incorporation, Companies House Registration Number, Partnership Agreement, HMRC Registration, Self-Assessment documents, current business insurance document, Trust constitution documents or VAT Registration document

Please note when uploading these documents with your application, the maximum file size for each document is 5mb. If your files are more than 5mb in size, you will not be able to attach them to your application, and you won't be able to submit your application successfully. If your scanned images, documents or photos are larger than 5mb, there are many tools and apps available for free that allow you to resize images, and photos can be converted into PDF documents for free using Adobe Acrobat Reader or other online tools.

Apply online for the Strategic Framework Business Fund

Please DO NOT APPLY using this form if your business is mobile close contact services. The Scottish Government will publish details of support for mobile close contact services separately.

After you have submitted your application

After you have submitted your online application form to us you should receive an email confirming that your application has been received.  If you have not heard from us please check your email junk or spam folders, and check that your email inbox is not full. Please do not contact us regarding progress with your application unless you have been waiting more than 10 working days. Our normal working days are Monday to Friday. If we have any questions about your application we will normally contact you by email.

If your application is successful you will be notified by email.   Grants will be paid every four weeks in arrears.  Payments for the first four week period, starting 2 November 2020 will be issued from 30 November 2020. A BACS payment should reach your nominated business bank account within 3 working days of you being notified.

If your application is unsuccessful you will be given the reason by email, along with details of the appeal procedure. 

Further information

Information about the Fund is available on the Scottish Government website

If you still have questions about applying for the grant you can email sfbf@argyll-bute.gov.uk or call us on 01546 604 833 Monday to Friday from 9am – 5pm.