A NORTHWICH pub landlady has told the Guardian of how she is one of the ‘unlucky five per cent’ being overlooked by the Government’s financial support for Tier 2 businesses.

Chancellor of the Exchequer, Rishi Sunak announced a new financial support scheme for hospitality businesses following the latest restrictions as part of the Government’s three-tier system.

The funding includes cash grants of up to £2,100 per month for hospitality businesses which are open, but severely affected by restrictions on socialising, which includes hospitality businesses in Northwich.

However, these grants are calculated using a business’s ‘rateable value’, meaning those who do not pay business rates are slipping through the cracks.

Advice on the government’s website reads: “The funding local authorities (LAs) will receive will be based on the number of hospitality, hotel, B&B, and leisure businesses in their area. LAs will receive a funding amount that will be the equivalent of £934 per month for properties with a rateable value of £15,000 or under; £1,400 per month for properties with a rateable value over £15,000 and below £51,000; and £2,100 per month for properties with a rateable value of £51,000 and over.”

This is no good to one Northwich pub landlady, who wishes to remain anonymous. She runs her business on a retail agreement with a large pub operator, meaning she keeps a percentage of the turnover, but does not have to pay business rates.

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“We’re just one of the unlucky five per cent,” she said. “There’s nothing available for people like me. We’re a small premises – I only have 10 tables inside. Even when we had the rule of six, I couldn’t take the money I used to take, and I certainly can’t now. Our weekly take has been cut by almost a third.”

Staff are also being affected, with their hours being reduced in order to allow the pub to stay afloat.

“I do all day every day by myself, apart from Friday,” said the landlady, who has had to sign up for Universal Credit to supplement her own income. “One girl worked three shifts a week and one girl worked one shift a week, so I’ve reduced their hours to bank as much as I can in case we go to Tier 3. “All we can do is keep trading and hope we come out the other side.”