General

Published: March 29, 2020 | Updated: March 29, 2020

Biz coronavirus update featuring Hall & Woodhouse, Poole BID and Nuffield Health

Chris Chapman, Head of Business Partnerships, Hall & Woodhouse.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

Hall & Woodhouse cancels Business Partner rent and service charges

Hall & Woodhouse (H&W), the independent family-owned Dorset brewer, is to cancel all rent and service charges and suspend loan repayments for its Business Partner estate for eight weeks from Sunday March 22.

The decision was originally made to suspend these payments for four weeks in response to the Prime Minister’s advice on March 16 to avoid pubs, restaurants, theatres, office environments and non-essential travel, to limit the spread of COVID-19.

However, following the PM’s announcement four days later that all pubs, restaurants and cafes were to close, the decision was made to extend this for a further four weeks.

Chris Chapman, Head of Business Partnerships at H&W, said: “We are committed to providing our Business Partners with the financial support and advice needed to help them through this period of uncertainty and felt it was only right to take immediate action.

“We are grateful to the government for making available employee retention support, as well as providing business interruption loans or grants to our Business Partners, but we feel it is only right that we enhance our help given.

“We know that the situation is evolving at speed and we are monitoring the situation closely and will adjust our support according to any advancements.

“We will come through this together, and when we do, we want our Business Partners to have the finances in place to allow them to recover as quickly as possible.”

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Poole BID defers levy payment during coronavirus outbreak

Poole Business Improvement District (BID) has set out the support available to Poole businesses during the COVID-19 outbreak.

It includes deferring the BID levy payment for all businesses for an initial period of eight weeks from April 1.

There will be regular reviews and an extension of this period if necessary.

Businesses requiring support or advice during this time on issues ranging from HR advice, hiring additional staff, or accessing government funding can approach the BID for more information and to be put in contact with the relevant authorities.

Dan Hurley, Chairman of Poole BID, pictured left, said: “COVID-19 is impacting everyone and we want to reassure our local BID business community that we will continue to support them through these unprecedented times in whatever way we can.

“Any business is going to struggle through this prolonged uncertainty so we want to defer our levy bill payments for as long as we can.

“We also know that ensuring that all businesses – large or small –can access the available support is going to be crucial to keeping them afloat, and we would strongly urge anyone that needs more information to contact us as soon as possible.

“Keeping everyone safe and well is a priority for Poole BID, but helping to ensure they can protect their jobs and businesses is also something we are committed to continuing over the coming weeks and months.”

Poole BID represents local businesses and works with other partners in Poole to represent the business community.

If a business would like advice or support, they should contact the Poole BID team at info@poolebid.com.

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Nuffield Health Bournemouth Hospital to support NHS battle against coronavirus

Nuffield Health Bournemouth Hospital is one of 30 Nuffield Health hospitals to be made available to NHS trusts following discussions with NHS England about how independent hospitals can support NHS patients in its efforts against coronavirus.

Steve Gray, Chief Executive at Nuffield Health, said: “This is an unprecedented time, as the UK’s largest healthcare charity we have a huge role to play in supporting the NHS patients in our local communities across the nation.

“We, alongside other independent hospital providers, have been in discussions with the NHS about how we can support the NHS.

“This is likely to be for a minimum of three months while the coronavirus situation continues to require our support.”

Talks about timings between Nuffield Health and NHS England are ongoing and it’s possible that three Nuffield Health hospitals may be utilised to provide cancer care to NHS patients with the other 27 hospitals focused on COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patient care.

Nuffield Health has also offered support with clinicians, support services and clinical equipment such as ventilators.

Access to its 14 nurseries is also available for NHS and key workers to relieve the strain on employees and their families.

The charity will be reimbursed at cost meaning no profit will be made and it will be audited by external auditors.

Nuffield Health Bournemouth Hospital, pictured above, is based on Lansdowne Road.

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