Rushcliffe MP Ruth Edwards joined Rushcliffe Borough Council leader Simon Robinson and Cllr Andy Edyvean on a virtual conference call organised by the Federation of Small Businesses.
The call, held on Friday afternoon, was an opportunity for small businesses and self-employed people in Rushcliffe to ask about the support available for firms during the COVID-19 lockdown.
The conference also discussed ‘bounce back’ loans, broadband and the future of Rushcliffe’s economy.
Speaking after the conference, Ruth said:
“I would like to thank the FSB for inviting me to participate in their Rushcliffe business Q&A. It was a great opportunity to talk with business owners from across Rushcliffe and hear their concerns.
“The message I received was that the majority of businesses are benefitting from the unprecedented support provided by the Government. I can assure those businesses and individuals who have fallen through the cracks that I will keep pressing Ministers to continue to improve the schemes.
“I would also like to offer huge thanks to Rushcliffe Borough Council for getting Government grants out to businesses so quickly. The grants have been a lifeline and should ensure that many of our excellent local businesses continue well beyond these challenging times.”
Simon Robinson, Leader of Rushcliffe Borough Council, said:
“At such challenging times for everyone, it is key to engage with local businesses to get their feedback and get it back to Government via the MP and the Council.
“I would like to thank the FSB for this opportunity to speak with members and look forward to continuing dialog to ensure we get the best support for our businesses across the Borough.”
Michael Weedon, FSB Policy Representative for the East Midlands, said: “It was a really productive online meeting and I would like to thank Ruth, Simon and Andy for joining us and our South Nottinghamshire members for taking part.
“A wide range of issues were discussed and outcomes reached including on the availability of the small business grant to the new bounce back loans.
“The FSB will continue to work with elected representatives both in Rushcliffe and nationally to help local entrepreneurs during COVID-19 and afterwards as part of the recovery phase.”
An issue that featured in the Q&A was eligibility for the Government’s business support grants. A discretionary fund has now been announced by Ministers that will entitle certain small businesses who were previously outside the scope of the scheme to grant payments up to £25,000. Ruth is now working with local business and Rushcliffe Borough Council to get the funds to those who need it.