Thank you for contacting me about the coronavirus and its impact on artists.
These are unprecedented times and as such the Government has taken strong action to reduce the spread of coronavirus and support those it affects. As of Friday 20 March this has included the closing of pubs, clubs, bars and theatres. These closures are now enforceable by law in England and Wales due to the threat to public health.
I recognise that this will have a major impact on those who rely on these venues for their livelihoods. That is why I welcome the major support package that has been announced by the Treasury, both for businesses and individuals, including artists and other self employed people.
The Self-employment Income Support Scheme will support self-employed individuals (including members of partnerships) whose income has been negatively impacted by COVID-19. The scheme will provide a grant to self-employed individuals or partnerships, worth 80 per cent of their profits up to a cap of £2,500 per month.
To support businesses operating in the hospitality and leisure sector, there will be an automatic business rates holiday for one year. In addition, the Retail and Hospitality Grant Scheme provides businesses in the retail, hospitality and leisure sectors with property with a rateable value of between £15,000 and £51,000 with a cash grant of up to £25,000 per property. For businesses in receipt of small business rate relief or rural rate relief they will receive a grant of £10,000.
I am assured that the Government will keep this situation under review and won't hesitate to do more if it is needed.
Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.