Salisbury Business Improvement District

Salisbury BID join #BusinessSOS Campaign

12th September 2022

Salisbury BID are backing the #BusinessSOS campaign, founded by organisations representing over 150,000 retail, leisure, hospitality and tourism businesses warns harm caused by the spiralling energy crisis is superseding the pandemic with the potential to cause irreversible damage to UK high streets and the economy.

We are calling on the Government to deliver support to our retail, hospitality & leisure businesses so they have every chance to survive following the rise in energy costs.

Our business communities need:

  • A reduction in VAT headline rate from 20% to 12.5% and business energy bills from 20% to 5%
  • 100% business rate relief until 31st March 2023
  • Energy rate relief on all business energy bills

They need action and they need it now.

Following rumours of an energy prize freeze, over 150,000 businesses from across the UK are urging Government to act on spiralling energy costs which are proving more detrimental than the pandemic.

The #BusinessSOS campaign believes mass closures and redundancies are inevitable if Government does not swiftly implement measures that alleviate the critical pressures that businesses, like households, have been facing since April 2022.

Robin McGowan, Salisbury BID CEO says

“Due to the current financial climate many Salisbury businesses are being forced to make the difficult decision over their business viability moving forwards.  It is not scaremongering to say that this crisis could be worse for businesses than the pandemic and without comprehensive support they may not survive.  To avoid mass closures and redundancies we are calling on the government to act immediately to reduce VAT, give business rate and energy rate relief.”

Bill Addy CEO of Liverpool BID and Chair of The BID Foundation says

“Businesses recognise that they benefited from the immediate support given them during the pandemic but we are in danger of all that support being thrown away as those same businesses that have worked valiantly to recover will be decimated by the cost of living crisis. Business is now at a watershed moment that needs an urgent response from our new Prime Minister, they need hope and certainty if they are to survive. It is business that will ensure that UK can grew the economy out of the coming recession but do that business needs to survive and that requires urgent action.”

Letter to the Government

Along with other organisations that attend the High Streets Task Force Sector Leaders Group, co-chaired by TBF, we have written to the Prime Minster to make clear the threat to high streets in the plainest terms. You can download the letter here

The letter highlights two examples of businesses featured by the recent #BusinessSOS campaign and also sets out two common ‘asks’ from all co-signatories; relief of business rates, and a reduction in VAT for retail, hospitality and leisure.

More information will be shared with businesses regarding the #BusinessSOS campaign as this develops.

For more information on Getting help if your business can't afford its energy bills click here.