Access to funding
Your band could qualify for a £10,000 grant from your local authority.
Brass Band World has been informed that neighbouring village bands, Woodfalls and Downton, have both successfully applied for grants from their local authority, with both bands being awarded £10,000 to help with running costs during lockdown.
Paul Williams, Musical Director of Downton and percussionist with Woodfalls applied for grants for both bands and is keen to get this information out there to benefit the wider community of bands who may be struggling.
Paul told BBW: "The grants are designed to offer small businesses a helping hand during this emergency and we're grateful to Wiltshire Council who are obviously working hard through this tough time to process applications so quickly."
The Downton MD continued: "To be eligible, a business or charity needs to own or rent a property and qualify for Business Rate relief, meaning your band’s Business Tax bill is reduced, often to a zero rate."
On the importance and simplicity of applying for the grant, Paul revealed: "Applying for the grant took less than five minutes! I feel it's important that every band who qualifies, applies as this extra funding could mean the difference between bands surviving or going under during this difficult time."
The Small Business Grant Fund is available for bands in England, but Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are also running similar schemes. To apply simply go to your local Council’s website and search for “Small Business Grant Fund”
Bands in Northern Ireland need to visit this link, but the Northern Irish need to act fast to get applications in by Wednesday 20th May.
Although organistaions like Brass Bands England are trying to help bands through crowd-funding initiatives such as its Brass Band Emergency Fund, its difficult to know how far this will go in helping bands get back on their feet. However, in reality, the level of financial support illuminated here could make a huge difference to bands throughout England and further afield.
With grateful thanks to Paul Williams.
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