It allows small independent sole traders or locally based chains moving or expanding into a vacant premises to claim for up to 50 per cent of the setup, shopfitting, refit and branding costs, to a maximum of £10,000.
Since being introduced last spring, more than £100,000 has been paid out to at least 15 traders.
Shauni Houghton, owner of Little Miss Candyfloss, a new children’s clothing boutique in St Andrews Road South, St Annes, was presented with £3,572 by Fylde Council leader Coun Karen Buckley.
“I’ve always wanted to operate a little clothing boutique, and I saw the niche for a children’s clothing store in St Annes," said Shauni. "I’m thankful for the grant from the ARG Vacant Premises Fund, as it really helped to make the dream happen.”
Other recent recipients of ARG Vacant Premises Grant cash have included the No 10 Ale House, Park Road; Keto Kitchen, St Andrews Road South; Squires Gentleman’s Outfitters, Wood Street, all St Annes; Card Market, Market Square, Kirkham and Jakes & Co Tailors,Queen Street, Lytham.
Coun Buckley said: “These grant payments represent one part of Fylde Council’s commitment to supporting the recovery of our local economy after the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. It has been a delight to see these new in-person businesses spring to life, and we will continue to do all we can to support our vital town centres and historic high streets.”
The ARG Vacant Premises grant is currently closed to new applicants, but more information about current COVID financial support for businesses is available at new.fylde.gov.uk/covid-19-support-for-businesses/
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