Floods fund help deadline extended for Wyre Forest businesses

FUNDING BOOST: Flood-hit businesses, including Bewdley ones, can apply for grant money to help them get back on track.

FUNDING BOOST: Flood-hit businesses, including Bewdley ones, can apply for grant money to help them get back on track.

First published in News Kidderminster Shuttle: Photograph of the Author by , Reporter

THE deadline for applying for funding grants of up to £3,000 for Wyre Forest businesses affected by the recent flooding has been extended.

Applications for the cash must now be submitted by Friday, April 4 and the funds are being made available through Worcestershire Business Central, the county-wide support service, in partnership with Worcestershire's district councils - including Wyre Forest's.

Businesses which have had water in their premises can apply for a maximum of £3,000, whereas as lower priorities - those indirectly affected by the flooding of the road where they trade - can get up to £1,500. There were thought to be 30 businesses in Wyre Forest directly affected by last month's floods in Stourport and Bewdley.

In addition, flooded businesses will be able to apply to the district council for business rate relief for a period of three months and from April 1 a non-means tested grant of up to £5,000 will be open to applications from householders and businesses to pay for repairs which would improve a property's ability to withstand future flooding.

Conservative councillor John Campion, leader of Wyre Forest District Council, said: "I would encourage all businesses who have been impacted with flooding in their premises or indirectly because there was no direct access to contact Worcestershire Business Central before the deadline.

"We have been working with our partners to help businesses and residents get back on their feet following the floods. We've highlighted the funding to those businesses we think could benefit but there may be others who are entitled to assistance too and we don't want them to miss out."

Despite the River Seven at Bewdley threatening to reach a 14-year-high level last month, flood barriers kept the town largely dry although road closures, including at the Bewdley Bridge, made it difficult for potential customers to reach the town centre.

Wyre Forest MP Mark Garnier welcomed the funding offer, adding: "This is great news for businesses in Wyre Forest which have been affected by flooding. It is important businesses get this essential funding so they can recover quickly from the damage flooding has caused."

For more information or to receive an application pack, visit business-central.co.uk, email info@business-central.co.uk or call 0300 123 1440.

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