The Government have launched a new dedicated website for businesses to find out what support is available. click here
Click here to download the Government Plan for reopening the economy
The document looks at tourism as being in the Third Stage of reopening process:
The ambition at this step is to open at least some of the remaining businesses and premises that have been required to close, including personal care (such as hairdressers and beauty salons) hospitality (such as food service providers, pubs and accommodation), public places (such as places of worship) and leisure facilities (like cinemas). They should also meet the COVID-19 Secure guidelines. Some venues which are, by design, crowded and where it may prove difficult to enact distancing may still not be able to re-open safely at this point, or may be able to open safely only in part. Nevertheless the Government will wish to open as many businesses and public places as the data and information at the time allows. In order to facilitate the fastest possible re-opening of these types of higher-risk businesses and public places, the Government will carefully phase and pilot re-openings to test their ability to adopt the new COVID-19 Secure guidelines. The Government will also monitor carefully the effects of reopening other similar establishments elsewhere in the world, as this happens. The Government will establish a series of taskforces to work closely with stakeholders in these sectors to develop ways in which they can make these businesses and public places COVID-19 Secure.
There is also an important piece on travel restrictions for people coming to the UK
In order to keep overall levels of infection down and in line with many other countries, the Government will introduce a series of measures and restrictions at the UK border. This will contribute to keeping the overall number of transmissions in the UK as low as possible. First, alongside increased information about the UK’s social distancing regime at the border, the Government will require all international arrivals to supply their contact and accommodation information. They will also be strongly advised to download and use the NHS contact tracing app.
Second, the Government will require all international arrivals not on a short list of exemptions to self-isolate in their accommodation for fourteen days on arrival into the UK. Where international travellers are unable to demonstrate where they would self-isolate, they will be required to do so in accommodation arranged by the Government. The Government is working closely with the devolved administrations to coordinate implementation across the UK.
An outline of the key points in the timeline include:
As part of this plan the UK Government has a carefully planned timetable for lifting restrictions, with indicative dates that should help people to plan. This timetable depends on successfully controlling the spread of the virus; if the evidence shows sufficient progress is not being made in controlling the virus then the lifting of restrictions may have to be delayed. They cannot predict with absolute certainty what the impact of lifting restrictions will be.If, after lifting restrictions, the Government sees a sudden and concerning rise in the infection rate then it may have to re-impose some restrictions. It will seek to do so in as limited and targeted a way as possible, including reacting by re-imposing restrictions in specific geographic areas or in limited sectors where it is proportionate to do so. Please note:
Step One – 13 May
- Work - For the foreseeable future, workers should continue to work from home rather than their normal physical workplace, wherever possible. All workers who cannot work from home should travel to work if their workplace is open. Anyone who has symptoms, however mild, or is in a household where someone has symptoms, should not leave their house to go to work.
- Schools - The rate of infection remains too high to allow the reopening of schools for all pupils yet.
- Travel - Everybody (including critical workers) should continue to avoid public transport wherever possible. People should travel by bike, car or on foot where possible. Social distancing guidance on public transport must be followed rigorously.
- Face Coverings -As more people return to work, there will be more movement outside people's immediate household. This increased mobility means the Government is now advising that people should aim to wear a face-covering in enclosed spaces where social distancing is not always possible and they come into contact with others that they do not normally meet, for example on public transport or in some shops. Homemade cloth face-coverings can help reduce the risk of transmission in some circumstances. Face-coverings are not intended to help the wearer, but to protect against inadvertent transmission of the disease to others if you have it asymptomatically.
- Outdoor Exercise - SAGE advise that the risk of infection outside is significantly lower than inside, so the Government is updating the rules so that, as well as exercise, people can now also spend time outdoors subject to:
- not meeting up with any more than one person from outside your household;
- continued compliance with social distancing guidelines to remain two metres (6ft) away from people outside your household
- good hand hygiene, particularly with respect to shared surfaces; and those responsible for public places being able to put appropriate measures in place to follow the new COVID-19 Secure guidance.
- Vulnerable People - It remains the case that some people are more clinically vulnerable to COVID-19 than others. These include those aged over 70, those with specific chronic pre-existing conditions and pregnant women. These clinically vulnerable people should continue to take particular care to minimise contact with others outside their households, but do not need to be shielded. Those in the clinically extremely vulnerable group are strongly advised to stay at home at all times and avoid any face-to-face contact; this is called ‘shielding’.
- Schools - Schools should prepare to begin to open for more children from 1 June. The Government expects children to be able to return to early years settings, and for Reception, Year 1 and Year 6 to be back in school in smaller sizes, from this point. This aims to ensure that the youngest children, and those preparing for the transition to secondary school, have maximum time with their teachers.
- Secondary schools and further education colleges should also prepare to begin some face to face contact with Year 10 and 12 pupils who have key exams next year, in support of their continued remote, home learning. The Government’s ambition is for all primary school children to return to school before the summer for a month if feasible, though this will be kept under review.
- The Department of Education will engage closely with schools and early years providers to develop further detail and guidance on how schools should facilitate this.
- Retail - when and where it is safe to do so, and subject to those retailers being able to follow the new COVID-19 Secure guidelines. The intention is for this to happen in phases from 1 June; the Government will issue further guidance shortly on the approach that will be taken to phasing, including which businesses will be covered in each phase and the timeframes involved.
- All other sectors that are currently closed, including hospitality and personal care, are not able to re-open at this point because the risk of transmission in these environments is higher. The opening of such sectors is likely to take place in phases during step three.
- Sport & Cultural Events - cultural and sporting events to take place behind closed-doors for broadcast, while avoiding the risk of large-scale social contact.
- Public Transport - re-opening more local public transport in urban areas, subject to strict measures to limit as far as possible the risk of infection in these normally crowded spaces.
- Family Contact - As restrictions continue, the Government is considering a range of options to reduce the most harmful social effects to make the measures more sustainable. For example, the Government has asked SAGE to examine whether, when and how it can safely change the regulations to allow people to expand their household group to include one other household in the same exclusive group.
- The intention of this change would be to allow those who are isolated some more social contact, and to reduce the most harmful effects of the current social restrictions, while continuing to limit the risk of chains of transmission. It would also support some families to return to work by, for example, allowing two households to share childcare.
- Remaining Businesses and Premises - The ambition at this step is to open at least some of the remaining businesses and premises that have been required to close, including personal care (such as hairdressers and beauty salons) hospitality (such as food service providers, pubs and accommodation), public places (such as places of worship) and leisure facilities (like cinemas).
- They should also meet the COVID-19 Secure guidelines. Some venues which are, by design, crowded and where it may prove difficult to enact distancing may still not be able to re-open safely at this point, or may be able to open safely only in part.
Top-up to Local Business Grant Funds Scheme
The Government has established a £617m discretionary fund has been set up to accommodate certain small businesses previously outside the scope of the business grant funds scheme. The funding will be available to a range of businesses including B&B operators that pay council tax instead of business rates which is great news for the tourism industry.
To qualify, businesses must be small, under 50 employees, and they must also be able to demonstrate that they have seen a significant drop of income due to Coronavirus restriction measures. Further guidance on this funding will be published soon.
Extended Furlough Announcement
Here is the Government’s announcement of the extended furlough scheme. There are a number of questions still to be answered on issues such as flexibility and employer contributions but hopefully more detailed guidance will be published soon which will provide some clarity on these issues. One point that seems to be coming through (although not confirmed) is that, from August, the payment rate from Govt will fall to 60% with businesses required to make up the other 20%.
Furloughed Workers to Receive Full Parental Leave Entitlement
- Pay for furloughed workers taking family related leave is to be calculated based on usual earnings rather than furlough pay
- Full earnings will apply to Maternity Pay, Paternity Pay, Shared Parental Pay, Parental Bereavement Pay and Adoption Pay
Guidance for Employers to Help Workplaces Operate Safely
The Government has Published guidelines to make workplaces as safe as possible and give people confidence to go back to work. In addition, up to an extra £14 million made available for the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) for extra call centre employees, inspectors and equipment to handle inquiries. In addition, the guidance provides employers with a downloadable notice businesses should display to show people they have followed the guidance. There are eight sets of guidance for people working in different settings including outdoor work, offices and restaurants providing takeaways and deliveries. The Five Key principles of all the guidance are:
- Work from home, if you can
- Carry out a COVID-19 risk assessment, in consultation with workers or trade unions
- Maintain 2 metres social distancing, wherever possible
- Where people cannot be 2 metres apart, manage transmission risk
- Reinforcing cleaning processes
The Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service (ACAS) Advice for Employers and Employees click here. The advice is being reviewed daily. They are monitoring government updates and when legal changes happen, they are updating this page.
Acas practical information on coronavirus is reviewed daily to give you and your networks access to the most recent updates and common sense advice. For example, today’s update included more on social distancing and vulnerable workers; updates on working from home, lay-offs and short-time working; and a section on cleaning a workplace if someone comes to work with coronavirus.
- Acas practical information on coronavirus is reviewed daily to give you and your networks access to the most recent updates and common sense advice. For example, today’s update included more on social distancing and vulnerable workers; updates on working from home, lay-offs and short-time working; and a section on cleaning a workplace if someone comes to work with coronavirus.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance for employees, emplyers and businesses, Government website guidance here
The attached link provides the breakdown of financial business support that organisations can access:
- Bounce Back Loans
The Chancellor has announced new “bounce back loans” for SMEs will be available from 9am next Monday. Small businesses will be able to access loans worth 25 per cent of their turnover, up to £50,000, and the government will pay the interest for the first 12 months. The loans will be 100 per cent guaranteed by the Treasury, meaning the government will take on all the default risk. The good news for SMEs is that, unlike the other loan schemes, there are no tests of business viability and no complex eligibility criteria. Instead, there will be just a simple online form to complete.
- Coronavirus (COVID-19) guidance on the Small Business Grant Fund and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund has been updated.
- The Business rates: expanded retail discount guidance has been updated to cover certain properties previously excluded from the relief,but that have been forced to closeas a result of coronavirus restrictions
- Extra protection has been announced for commercial tenants to protect them from eviction if they are unable to pay rent because of Coronavirus.
- The Foreign Secretary has advised all British travellers to return to the UK.
- The UK Government has released guidance on the closure of all non-essential businesses and premises as part of further social distancing measures. It states that accommodation businesses should close unless they are providing for key workers or are a permanent residence. The latest guidance is here.
- The COVID-19 Corporate Financing Facility is now open. Information for businesses in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland has also been added.
- Updates to the Guidance for UK businesses trading internationally, including a business support helpline
- The Government has published guidance for businesses on the Small Business Grant Fund and the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund
- The Government has announced that Working Tax Credits payments will be increased from 6 April 2020. As part of a number of measures to support the country during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, the basic element of Working Tax Credit has been increased by £1,045 to £3,040 from 6 April 2020 until 5 April 2021
- From 25 March businesses will be given an additional 3 months to file accounts with Companies House to help companies avoid penalties as they deal with the impact of COVID-19.
- The press release for the Chancellor’s announcement on support for the self-employed can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/news/chancellor-gives-support-to-millions-of-self-employed-individuals
VAT Deferrals Update
HMRC has updated it’s guidance regarding how different VAT payments can be deferred including payments on account and monthly and quarterly payments. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/deferral-of-vat-payments-due-to-coronavirus-covid-19
- The Department for Transport guidance for staff in the transport sector much of which seems transferable to the tourism sector.
- The Treasury has published guidance for Local Authorities on the Expanded Retail Discount 2020/21: Coronavirus Response, which sets out in more detail what is meant by 'leisure, hospitality and retail' when referring to the business rate holiday and other schemes
- The National Lottery Heritage Fund has put together a £50million fund to support the heritage sector as an immediate response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.
- PASC has set up a website to provide support and information for self-catering businesses regardless of whether they are members.
- Collated Advice for Charity Sector - advice and support available to the Charity Sector, includes sectors on guidance for workers, guidance on fundraising and funding opportunities and guidance on Volunteershttps://www.gov.uk/guidance/covid-19-guidance-for-voluntary-community-and-social-enterprise-organisations#guidance-about-funding-and-fundraising
Further Support and Advice
- Government Business Support Measures here
- UK Government has now published advice and guidance for those providing hotel and other accomodation in the UK. this includes those who serve food, temporary accomodation and also exclusions plus advice on those with guests suffering COVID-19 symptoms
- Advice and guidance from the WHO (World Health Organisation) Click here
- Advice for preventative cleaning, find out more here
- Government guidance for cleaning environments within the community including, hotel rooms, work places, offices plus many more here
- Guidance on Social distancing for vulnerable people find out more here
- Government guidance for mass gatherings and events here
- The Government has relaxed rules and regulations at this time to allow establishments to operate as takeaways. Find out more here
- Guidance for food businesses has been added to GOV.UK,
Messaging,and Marketing Support
Tourism South East tips for Social Media to help keep things going and to help you remain present on Social Media here
- @VisitBritain Twitter
- @VisitEngland Twitter
- VisitBritain Instagram
- VisitEngland Instagram
- Love Great Britain Facebook
- EnjoyEngland Facebook
Practical Advice, Working From Home
As many of us will be finding ourselves working from home in the coming weeks here are some tips and websites that might help from conference calling to things to do with the kids.
The 6 best free video conference calling apps according to the "how to geek" find out more here
NCSC - NATIONAL CYBER SECURITY CENTRE - Advice to help organisations manage the cyber security challenges of increased home working here.
Things to do with the kids
As many schools begin to close here are some hopefully helpful links that will assist with keeping a little bit of structure in these difficult times and provide you with some ideas of how to keep them entertained.
You Tube 25 fun activities to do with the kids
Pinterest Kids arts and craft ideas to do at home
Joe Wickes Free Youtube PE lessons at home here
Twinkle Home school resource
A pinch of perfect how to turn the parent into a teacher
STAY AT HOME UNLESS
You should only leave the house for one of four reasons.
● Shopping for basic necessities, for example food and medicine, which must be as infrequent as possible.
● One form of exercise a day, for example a run, walk, or cycle - alone or with members of your household.
● Any medical need, or to provide care or to help a vulnerable person.
● Travelling to and from work, but only where this absolutely cannot be done from home.
To find out more about the symptoms of COVID-19 and how best to protect yourself and others see the NHS website for advice here
TSE continues to lobby the Government, through the national agencies, communicating our members feedback and frustrations.
Our Membership team are working remotely and are able to offer help and support where possible, please email us at [email protected]
For the latest up to date information check our news story here
UK Government has now published advice and guidance for those providing hotel and other accomodation in the UK. this includes those who serve food, temporary accomodation and also exclusions plus advice on those with guests suffering COVID-19 symptoms