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Covid-19 update for tourism businesses - 8 March 2021

Supporting our local tourism industry through the Covid-19 pandemic.

We continue to post regular updates to help you access the relevant information and support through the Covid-19 pandemic. If you have any specific queries, please contact us - we are always happy to help.

ERF Sector Specific Grant for Hospitality, Leisure and Tourism - opens 9 March

The Welsh Government has announced a further £30 million for sector specific businesses affected by ongoing coronavirus restrictions. 

Phase 2 of the ERF Sector Specific Grant (operating cost) package is targeted at Hospitality, Tourism and Leisure (HTL) businesses and associated supply chain businesses with 10 or more staff that will be materially impacted by a greater than 60% impact of turnover as a result of on-going alert level 4 restrictions between 25 January 2021 to 31 March 2021.

Applications open Tuesday 9 March until Friday 12 March 2021 (8pm).  For further information, and to access the eligibility checker, please visit the Business Wales website. 

UK Government Budget 2021 - how does it affect your business?

The UK Government has published its Spring Budget, some key points include:
•    An extension of the Coronavirus Job Support Scheme (furlough scheme) to September 2021 
•    An extension of the Self Employment Income Support Scheme to September 2021
•    A new UK-wide Recovery Loan Scheme
•    Extension to the VAT cut to 5% for hospitality, accommodation and attractions across the UK until the end of September

Find out more on the Business Wales website.

Business rates holiday extended for 12 months

The rates holiday for the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors in Wales will be extended for a further 12 months. 

Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with rateable values up to £500k, and charities in Wales will qualify for a 12 month business rates holiday. Those with a rateable value of over £500k will qualify for a 100% rates relief for 2021-22.

This relief package, in combination with the existing Small Business Rates Relief scheme, will ensure that more than 70,000 businesses will continue to pay no rates at all in 2021-22.

Sign Up to the new Copr Bay Newsletter

The ambitious transformation of the city will reach an important milestone this year, with the opening Copr Bay, Swansea's vibrant new neighbourhood.

A major catalyst for change in the city-wide plans, this landmark development will reconnect our city to the Marina and beach and include a new 3,500-capacity indoor arena and conference centre hosting over 160 performances a year, alongside a 1.1-acre beautifully landscaped public park, new homes, offices and a range of independent and locally run dining concepts.

To keep up to date with its progress and the latest news on the scheme, you can now sign up to receive a Copr Bay newsletter through their website

Sign up to the Copr Bay Newsletter

Copr Bay bridge installation complete

Swansea's new 49m long landmark bridge is now in place over the main Oystermouth Road.

The statement bridge will act as a new gateway for both pedestrians and cyclists, connecting Swansea's city centre to the new arena and coastal park, as well as the Marina and beach. We hope its striking design will come to be a key part of our city's architectural legacy. 

Watch the video here.

Mother's Day campaign - last call for offers and gift ideas

Our Mother's Day (14 March) Gift Ideas section and blog are now live to encourage customers to order a gift online, buy a gift voucher for afternoon tea - or even book a holiday experience to enjoy later in the year.

These are being promoted via our social media channels (78K Facebook likes and 16.6k Twitter followers) and it's completely free of charge for local businesses to get on board.

If you have any offers, vouchers or gift ideas and want to be part of the campaign, email asap.

Make Swansea Bay your Happy Place in 2021

In addition to the 'What's on your Wishlist' campaign we launched earlier this week, we're already making plans for our next marketing campaign to attract visitors to our beautiful area.

The 'Happy Place' campaign will encourage staycations in Swansea Bay by sharing YOUR stories, memories, images and short videos.

It could be that you've travelled the world but always returned to Swansea Bay because you love it so much, that you've moved here to start a business or family (or both!), that you have a favourite view or beach that you always return to, etc. anything that makes Swansea Bay your 'happy place'. 

We want to hear your story! Send us pics, videos, quotes, anything which you are happy for us to share with potential visitors to show them how much Swansea Bay means to you. 

We're planning to create as much positive content for this campaign across all our social media channels and we need you to become content creators and sharers — so using our collective reach across Facebook, Twitter and Instagram we can inspire potential visitors to make Swansea Bay, Mumbles and Gower their Happy Place in 2021.

Email with your 'Happy Place' content. 

Bookings for the Easter period in self-contained holiday accommodation

Welsh Government are currently working with the tourism sector on the possibility of reopening self-contained accommodation in Wales as part of the next review.

No guarantees can be given at this point and accommodation providers are therefore reminded that any bookings that fall beyond 12 March are at that business and the customer's own risk.  No bookings can be taken for the period up to 12 March.

With regard to booking enquiries from England, UK Gov regulations state that from 12 April, overnight stays away from home will be permitted  in self-contained accommodation by members of the same household, however this only applies to overnight stays in England. Businesses in Wales should follow the Welsh Government regulations.

Accommodation providers must seek permission for key workers opening

Under Alert Level 4, all holiday or travel accommodation in Wales must remain closed unless specifically requested to open by a local authority or Welsh Government.

If you receive requests to accommodate key workers, you must apply to your Local Authority in order be able to open for this purpose. 

Operators located within the City & County of Swansea can submit their request to Swansea Council's Licensing Team.

Find out more about accommodation requests during Alert Level 4.

'Good to Go' businesses get global 'Safe Travels' stamp

Great news if your business is already registered with the 'We're Good to Go' scheme - VisitBritain has announced that you now automatically qualify for the international 'Safe Travels' stamp from the World Travel & Tourism Council (WTTC).

'We're Good To Go' was launched last year by tourism boards across the UK and as been recognised by the WTTC as meeting its international global standardised health and hygiene protocols and for its role in supporting the recovery of the UK tourism sector. If you are already part of the scheme, simply log back into your online account to download your free 'Safe Travels' stamp.

Not 'Good to Go' yet? You can apply through the usual process and indicate within your application your wish to use the additional global WTTC stamp.

Climate Change Survey - take action now

Swansea Council has declared a Climate Emergency and is taking action to reduce carbon emissions and help our city adapt. We have an organisational target of a 'net zero Swansea Council by 2030'. This means reducing and offsetting carbon emissions from the council's activities and estate.

But to make a real difference, the whole of Swansea has to reduce its carbon footprint. Everyone needs to get involved in making changes. Our ambition is for a 'net zero Swansea by 2050'.

Your views are being sought on measures proposed to date for Swansea Council as an organisation. We also want to understand the attitudes of people in Swansea to climate change and the areas that they feel are priorities for action.

Please take part in our climate change survey and have your say today. Thank you.

RLSP Covid Impact Survey - have your say

The Regional Learning and Skills Partnership (RLSP) continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 on businesses across the region of South West and Mid Wales.

They have consulted with hundreds of businesses over the last few months and whilst this has allowed them to provide a good level of evidence to Welsh Government, they need more businesses to take part.

This short survey aims to capture the challenges that you're facing, any skills issues identified and what support you need to recover. It has been, and continues to be a very challenging time, therefore it is vitally important that all businesses are heard so that decisions at the highest level are informed by evidence. 

Please take a few minutes to complete the survey and share with your business contacts. Thank you.

Complete the survey now

Useful links to keep checking for updates:

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