Islington’s small businesses are the lifeblood of our borough’s high streets and town centres. Here in Islington we are committed to supporting SMEs at all stages. We have offered commercial rent holidays and supported in adapting and adjusting small business models to help them weather the challenges the pandemic has posed.
We have also prioritised the roll out of the government’s business support grants which we know are vital lifelines for many small businesses, as well as developing bespoke business support webinars, and established a local online business directory to promote our businesses and to encourage local people to shop local.
The Council has also secured additional funding for projects to support tech and digital start-ups, and we have commissioned specialist providers to support the borough’s social enterprises and co-operatives. But without the financial support needed, many SMEs may not make it through the pandemic.
We have lobbied the Chancellor for more support, including increased grants, helping those with rateable values above the threshold and funding for our local cultural institutions. While the Council has worked tirelessly to help our treasured small businesses, we need the Government to step up and give them the support they need to survive.
Cllr Asima Shaikh, Executive Member for Economy and Jobs
Cllr Matt Nathan, Small Business Champion, Islington Council