A comprehensive round-up of support programmes, funding opportunities and announcements relevant to businesses in the hospitality and tourism sector.
Business Lincolnshire Events
Business Lincolnshire continues to offer a platform of tools and webinar events from enhancing your social media presence, to finances, to leadership programmes. Click here to view themes and to book.
Peer to Peer Programme: Business Lincolnshire & Visit Lincoln
The national scheme, delivered locally through the Business Lincolnshire Growth Hub, is creating diverse cohort groups of individuals to collaboratively work through common business issues. Through interactive action learning the Peer Network programme enables SME leaders to discuss their own challenges, gain and reflect on valuable feedback and implement practical solutions to overcome them, drawing on industry advice from sector experts and Visit England.
More programmes are being developed for 2021 and you can read the Visit Lincoln blog and find contact details here.
Lincolnshire County Council's New Grant Funds
Councillors at Lincolnshire County Council have praised the resilience of small businesses during the pandemic and have enthusiastically welcomed four new grant funds. These grants are thought to be a unique offer in Lincolnshire and are testament to the importance given to Lincolnshire's SMEs .
- Digital Voucher Fund - supporting businesses in improving digitisation
- EXPRESSION OF INTEREST window will be open between 8th March 2021 and 12th March 2021
- Application criteria published 1st March
- Invest for the Future Grant - to contribute towards business expansion
- EXPRESSION OF INTEREST window will be open between 15th March and 26th March
- Application criteria published 8th March
- Rural business grant - for businesses and organisations with projects specifically in rural areas
- EXPRESSION OF INTEREST window will be open between 8th March 2021 and 17th March 2021
- Application criteria published 1st March.
Please note the second round of the Business Recovery Fund for small businesses will open at 9am on 4th March 2021 and will close at noon on 6th March 2021.
For more detail on the grant schemes visit here.
Coastal Communities Fund
We were successful in securing £370,000 from the Coastal Communities Fund, establishing a business and provider programme of training and career inspiration in response to employer need on the Lincolnshire coast to support local visitor economy businesses. Programmes were developed for delivery of off-season interventions, and five coastal champion videos have been produced with business partners highlighting the opportunities of careers and training of young people in the visitor economy.
The five coastal champion videos have been very well received with businesses, young people and the DWP as they showcase local young people progressing in careers in the visitor economy sector with support and training by their local employer.
Visit England extends the Good to Go Industry Standard to tackle consumer confidence around reopening
Visit England is extending the Good to Go industry standard into 2021 and businesses have the option of upgrading to a personalised certificate in recognition of the Covid-secure measures they have put in place.
If you have already signed up to We’re Good to Go, please make sure you are using the standard across your marketing channels to help you further. Visit Britain has also announced that tourism businesses in the UK registered to the ‘We’re Good To Go’ industry standard scheme can now also be automatically issued with the international ‘Safe Travels’ stamp from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).
To sign up please click here
Changes to the Kickstart Scheme
The Government is making it easier for employers of all sizes to benefit from joining the scheme by removing the limit requiring they create a minimum of 30 vacancies to apply directly. From 3rd February 2021, employers can apply directly to the Kickstart scheme for any number of job placements, as the threshold of 30 job placements has been removed.
Applications from the new Kickstart gateway are closed but Kickstart gateways already working with the scheme can continue to add more employers and job placements to their grant agreement.
Jobs Protected by Film & TV Production Restart Scheme
Almost 20,000 jobs in film and television have been protected by a Government-backed scheme to get screen productions back up and running again. More than 160 productions are benefiting from government-backed scheme to protect against Covid-related losses, and productions can resume filming thanks to insurance against such losses.
The £500 million scheme, part of the Plan for Jobs, has protected 19,460 jobs across UK film and TV since launch four months ago. Further info can be found here.
Free Visitor Experience workshops
The National Coastal Tourism Academy (NCTA) is hosting two free Experience Workshops to help visitor economy businesses develop their own coastal experiences.
Visitors are increasingly looking for more genuine ‘authentic experiences’ as part of their holiday, and one of the top requests from the latest NCTA Business Survey was support for targeting new audiences.
Presented by the England’s Coast project and Tourism Business Advisor Chris Brant from Unmissable England, the first short workshop will provide an introduction to Experience Tourism, where visitors engage in new activities or pursuits to create lasting memories. Chris is an experience maker himself and runs a series of visitor experiences, including baking scones in a thatched cottage and running vineyard tours with wine and gin tasting. Those attending will hear at first hand from a panel of coastal businesses how they tapped into new markets and built growth in the off-peak season.
In the second workshop session, Chris will delve a little deeper into the key components of experiences and take participants through an interactive workshop on how to create new experiences, get them to market and top tips needed to be successful.