New business support funding available - find out more about support for businesses affected by local and national coronavirus restrictions

Information on lateral flow testing for businesses and communities

National lockdown restrictions January 2021

As part of the national lockdown in England introduced on 4 January 2021, the following businesses must close:

  • non-essential retail, such as clothing and homeware stores, vehicle showrooms (other than for rental), betting shops, tailors, tobacco and vape shops, electronic goods and mobile phone shops, auction houses (except for auctions of livestock or agricultural equipment) and market stalls selling non-essential goods. These venues can continue to be able to operate click-and-collect (where goods are pre-ordered and collected off the premises) and delivery services.
  • hospitality venues such as cafes, restaurants, pubs, bars and social clubs; with the exception of providing food and non-alcoholic drinks for takeaway (until 11pm), click-and-collect and drive-through. All food and drink (including alcohol) can continue to be provided by delivery.
  • accommodation such as hotels, hostels, guest houses and campsites, except for specific circumstances, such as where these act as someone’s main residence, where the person cannot return home, for providing accommodation or support to the homeless, or where it is essential to stay there for work purposes
  • leisure and sports facilities such as leisure centres and gyms, swimming pools, sports courts,fitness and dance studios, riding arenas at riding centres, climbing walls, and golf courses.
  • entertainment venues such as theatres, concert halls, cinemas, museums and galleries, casinos, amusement arcades, bingo halls, bowling alleys, skating rinks, go-karting venues, indoor play and soft play centres and areas (including inflatable parks and trampolining centres), circuses, fairgrounds, funfairs, water parks and theme parks
  • animal attractions (such as zoos, safari parks, aquariums, and wildlife reserves)
  • indoor attractions at venues such as botanical gardens, heritage homes and landmarks must also close, though outdoor grounds of these premises can stay open for outdoor exercise
  • personal care facilities such as hair, beauty, tanning and nail salons. Tattoo parlours, spas, massage parlours, body and skin piercing services must also close. These services should not be provided in other people’s homes
  • community centres and halls must close except for a limited number of exempt activities, as set out below. Libraries can also remain open to provide access to IT and digital services – for example for people who do not have it at home – and for click-and-collect services

The following businesses can stay open:

  • essential retail such as food shops, supermarkets, pharmacies, garden centres, building merchants and suppliers of building products and off-licences
  • market stalls selling essential retail may also stay open
  • businesses providing repair services may also stay open, where they primarily offer repair services
  • petrol stations, automatic (but not manual) car washes, vehicle repair and MOT services, bicycle shops, and taxi and vehicle hire businesses
  • banks, building societies, post offices, short-term loan providers and money transfer businesses
  • funeral directors
  • laundrettes and dry cleaners
  • medical and dental services
  • vets and retailers of products and food for the upkeep and welfare of animals
  • animal rescue centres, boarding facilities and animal groomers (may continue to be used for animal welfare, rather than aesthetic purposes)
  • agricultural supplies shops
  • mobility and disability support shops
  • storage and distribution facilities
  • car parks, public toilets and motorway service areas
  • outdoor playgrounds
  • outdoor parts of botanical gardens and heritage sites for exercise
  • places of worship
  • crematoriums and burial grounds

See full guidance on which businesses and venues are permitted to be open.

Extended opening hours 

Retail shops (that are allowed to open by law) and supermarkets are free to open in our district for as long as they like, Monday to Saturday, during December and January. Most businesses can already do this but if you have a planning condition that restricts your opening hours, or the hours during which you can accept deliveries, then we will temporarily relax enforcement of this. Sunday opening hours remain the same as these are controlled by Parliament.

This is in response to a request from the Government. If we do receive complaints about noise and disruption as a result of you opening for longer, then we will negotiate with you to find a compromise.

Off-licences, and other businesses whose opening hours are controlled by a licence, must continue to operate within those hours. Failure to do so may result in enforcement action.

If you have any questions please contact Worcestershire Regulatory Services for advice by emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call 01905 822799.

Support grants for businesses forced to close

We are waiting for clarification from the Government regarding financial support available to businesses during the national lockdown announced at 8pm on 4 January 2021. We will update this page when we know more.

Businesses affected by restrictions introduced when Worcestershire was in Tier 2 (2 December 2020 to 30 December 2020) or Tier 3 (31 December 2020 to 4 January 2021) can apply for support using the form below, if they have not already done so.

An additional Christmas support payment of £1,000 is also available for wet-led pubs - those that were unable to open because they do not serve food (substantial meals) - during the period of Tier 2 and Tier 3 restrictions. Qualifying ratepayers will receive a one-off payment of £1,000 on top of any previous grant support they may also be eligible for.

You cannot apply for this funding if:

  • You get more than 50% of your income from food sales. 
  • You weren't trading on 30 November 2020. This was during the national lockdown period so if you were closed, but would have been open without the national restrictions, then you are considered as trading for the purposes of this scheme and can still apply.

You may be asked to supply evidence you receive less than 50% of your income from food sales to prove your pub is wet-led. To apply for this support funding please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Funding schemes available to support businesses affected by national coronavirus restrictions that were in place from 5 November to 2 December are still available to apply for, if you have not done so already. Please see the information further down this page to find out how to apply.

Tier 2 and 3 local coronavirus restrictions support funding

There are two funding schemes available to businesses affected by Tier 2 local coronavirus restrictions introduced from 2 December 2020 and 30 December 2020 and the Tier 3 local coronavirus restrictions which were introduced from 31 December 2020 to 4 January 2021.

  • Businesses forced to close by Tier 2 or 3 restrictions can apply for the Tier 2 or 3 Local Restrictions Grant (Closed)
  • Businesses still able to trade, but that have had their trade severely affected by the Tier 2 or 3 restrictions, can apply for the Tier 2 or 3 Local Restrictions Grant (Open)

The Tier 2 or 3 Local Restrictions Grant (Closed) scheme is open for applications.

pdf Read the full guidance on businesses that can and cannot claim for support from the Tier 2 or 3 Local Restrictions Grant (Closed). (343 KB)

Apply for local coronavirus restrictions grant support

How much is grant support worth?

Under the Local Restrictions Grant (Closed) scheme, payments will be made as follows:

  • Businesses registered for Business Rates with a rateable value of £15,000 or under will receive payments of £667 per 14 day qualifying restriction period.
  • Businesses registered for Business Rates with a rateable value of more than £15,000 and less than £51,000 will receive payments of £1,000 per 14 day qualifying restriction period.
  • Businesses registered for Business Rates with a rateable value of £51,000 or above will receive payments of £1,500 per 14 day qualifying restriction period

Payment levels for the Local Restrictions Grant (Open) scheme will be set once government guidance has been received.

Support funding for businesses affected by November 2020 lockdown

If your business was forced to close as a result of national coronavirus restrictions in force between 5 November 2020 and midnight on 2 December 2020 then you may qualify for grant support funding.

To receive the funding you must have been required to close by law and be registered for Business Rates.

Qualifying businesses will receive the following amounts based on the rateable value of your business premises:

  • For properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under, grants to be £1,334 per four weeks.
  • For properties with a rateable value of over £15,000 and below £51,000, grants to be £2,000 per four weeks.
  • For properties with a rateable value of £51,000 or over grants to be £3,000 per four weeks.

You may receive more than one grant if you have more than one qualifying business.

You will not qualify for funding if:

Apply for a National Restrictions Support Grant

Additional Restrictions Grant (Discretionary funding scheme)

We are making funds available to support businesses that do not qualify for the main support funding schemes, that require a business rates account, but were still severely affected by the national coronavirus restrictions in place from 5 November to midnight on 2 December 2020 and Tier 2 and 3 restrictions in place from 2 December 2020 to 4 January 2021.

Businesses that qualify for an Additional Restrictions Grant will receive up to £3,000.  To help us support as many businesses as possible, the amount of grant awarded will be proportionate to the impact of coronavirus restrictions on the income of a particular business.

Applications will be prioritised on the following criteria:

  • The importance of the business to the economy as an employer. This will include those who are self-employed.
  • Whether the business has been forced to close, or can demonstrate a significant reduction in revenue, due to national coronavirus restrictions on trade from 4 November.

The following types of businesses may qualify for an Additional Restrictions Grant:

  • Businesses with a rateable value involved in the supply chain to businesses within the retail, hospitality or leisure sectors that have been forced to close by government.
  • Businesses without a rateable value involved in the supply chain to businesses within the retail, hospitality or leisure sectors that have been forced to close by government.
  • Businesses without a rateable value within the retail, hospitality or leisure sectors that have been forced to close by government.

Evidence this criteria has been met will need to be provided. Please read the guidance notes in full before applying.

pdf  Read the Additional Restrictions Grant (Discretionary funding scheme) guidance. (163 KB) (162 KB)

Pubs and restaurants that may still be trading by takeaway, delivery or click and collect should apply for the main business support grant scheme as they have been legally required to close.

Apply for an Additional Restrictions Grant

Business Rates discounts

Discounts on Business Rates were introduced in 2020 for retail, leisure and hospitality businesses, pubs and nurseries. Visit our Business Rates Reductions page for more information.

Loans and other support

There is a range of other financial support available to help you through this challenging time.

Please read the Government's guide to financial support for jobs and businesses for more information.

You can also visit the Government's business support page.

You can sign up to our business e-newsletter and we will provide you with the latest updates direct to your inbox. 

Follow our social media channels @MalvernHills_DC and @EcoDevMHDC for further updates on Covid 19 business support as we receive them.

Help for the self-employed

The Government has announced that support for self-employed people will rise to 80 per cent of trading profits during November 2020. Visit the Government's business support page for more information.