Southwark Business news March 2021

Please visit Southwark Council’s webpages on COVID-19 prevention for businesses  and COVID-19 business support and information for the latest advice for you and your employees

Round 3 of the Additional Restrictions Grant

Round 3 of the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) is now open to applications. Round 3 covers the 61 day period of national lockdown restrictions in place between 10 February and 11 April 2021.

Deadline for Round 3 applications is 11 April 2021.

The ARG is a discretionary grant scheme to support micro and small businesses in Southwark that have been legally required to close (but are not business rates account holders), or have been severely affected by local and national restrictions.


  • If you have been awarded a Round 2 grant, you will automatically receive a Round 3 grant. Please do not apply for Round 3. We will contact you directly in early April 2021 to make the Round 3 payment.
  • If you have applied for a Round 2 grant but are awaiting the outcome of your application, please do not apply for Round 3 yet. You will be notified of the outcome of your Round 2 application by 31 March 2021.
  • If your business has been legally forced to close during the current period of national lockdown restrictions and you are a business rates account holder, you will be eligible for the Local Restrictions Support Grant and will not be eligible for the ARG

Grants for business rates payers ending soon

The majority of grant schemes specifically for business rates payers will soon close to applications.

With the exception of the National Lockdown Grant, all of the grant schemes listed on our website will close on 31 March 2021.

The National Lockdown Grant, which covers the period of national restrictions from 5 January 2021 onwards will close in two stages:

  • The first payment period, from 5 January to 15 February 2021, will close to applications on 31 March 2021
  • The second payment period, from 16 February to 31 March, will close to applications on 31 May 2021.    

Check your eligibility and apply today.

Workplace testing open to all businesses

All businesses, including those with less than 50 employees, can now sign up to the government’s free COVID-19 workplace testing programme.

Smaller businesses can now join larger businesses in offering free lateral flow tests to their employees, to help in the ongoing effort to detect asymptomatic cases. With 1 in 3 infected people unaware they have the virus, rapid asymptomatic testing plays a key part in the government’s plans for easing restrictions. 

Businesses have until 31 March 2021 to register, with the scheme remaining free until the end of June.

Businesses that can’t offer workplace testing should direct employees to one of our test sites.

Feedback needed on test and trace regulations

The Department of Health & Social Care’s (DH&SC) research team wants to hear from businesses in the hospitality, close-contact, leisure and tourism sectors about their experiences of the test and trace regulations.

They want to speak to owners and managers of businesses of all sizes to understand the various perspectives on the regulations, what the challenges are with their implementation and day-to-day compliance, as well as what’s working well. The learnings will help the DH&SC with their ongoing test and trace work as we move out of restrictions.

Research sessions will take place between 29 and 31 March 2021, lasting 60 minutes each, with participants reimbursed for their time. If you would like to take part, register you interest and availability today.

Contact us

Thank you for continuing to follow guidance through increasingly difficult times and helping to keep our community safe. We are available to provide advice and information at

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