Support for struggling Lincoln businesses will need “extension” as coronavirus restrictions continue, says City Council leader Ric Metcalfe.
The nation’s third COVID-19 lockdown led to yet another disruption for many businesses around Lincoln, with only a handful permitted to stay open.
With no end in sight, Ric Metcalfe has warned that the local and national economy may take a long time to recover.
Councillor Metcalfe said: “The support for local businesses will need some extension because I think this will not be over any time soon.
“Economically I think we’re going to take a long time to recover. Businesses will certainly need a further period of support, otherwise the long-term damage to the economy, to jobs and job security is going to be severe.”
The government has provided financial support to businesses through the Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme, the Furlough Scheme, and
more, with local councils providing grants to businesses that pay council tax.
Lincoln businessman, Jez Ashberry, director of Shooting Star PR, said: “The support was quick and targeted. We were able to get a grant from the local council, and we also furloughed a couple of staff who are now back with us full time.
“So, I would say the financial support has been pretty good for us.”
Councillor Metcalfe believes the vaccination programme will provide a “base for normality” as the UK continues its fight against coronavirus.