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Grants and External Funding

Please use the menu below to access information on grants and external funding news and resources. 


Open 4 Business Portal

Open 4 business logo image

To support our businesses during the current COVID-19 crisis, and into the recovery phase, Carlisle City Council is providing free access to Open 4 Business. Open4Business is designed to support businesses locate relevant up to date funding opportunities.

The portal is updated regularly with new local, regional and national funding announcements and can be easily searched by businesses on the basis of their industry, region and business size. The portal then provides information on how to apply for funding and contact funders directly. To search for grants for your business you will first need to register on the Open4Business website


Grants and Funding News

Covid 19: Business Discretionary Grant Fund - closing date 15 June 2020

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The government has made additional funding available to support small businesses.

The Local Authority Small Business Discretionary Grant is aimed at small businesses who are not eligible for other government coronavirus grants. Businesses who have applied for the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme and the Self Employed Income Support Scheme are eligible to apply for this scheme.

The government guidance prioritises the following businesses:

  • Small businesses in shared offices or other flexible workspaces. Examples could include units in industrial parks, science parks and incubators which do not have their own business rates assessment.

  • Regular market traders with fixed building costs, such as rent, who do not have their own business rates assessment.

  • Bed & Breakfasts which pay Council Tax instead of business rates.

  • Charity properties in receipt of charitable business rates relief which would otherwise have been eligible for Small Business Rates Relief or Rural Rate Relief.

Criteria which businesses must meet in order to apply

Your business may not be in the above list, but you may still apply. All businesses applying to this fund will need to supply evidence to demonstrate that it falls into one of the following categories:

  • Businesses which occupy property, or part of a property, with a rateable value or annual rent or annual mortgage payments below £51,000.

  • Businesses which can demonstrate that they have suffered a significant fall in income due to the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Business with fewer than 50 employees.

  • Businesses that were trading on or before 11 March 2020.

Ineligible businesses

Businesses which are eligible for the existing grant schemes are not eligible for the Local Authority Small Business Discretionary Grant.

Businesses which received the Small Business Grant Fund (where businesses in England who are in receipt of Small Business Rates Relief (SBRR) and Rural Rates Relief (RRR) in the business rates system were eligible for a payment) are also ineligible for this grant.

Companies that are in administration, are insolvent or where a striking-off notice has been made are not eligible for funding under this scheme.

The closing date for applications is midday on Monday 15 June 2020

Further guidance and application details can be found at this link 



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