The Department of Economy has announced today that it will begin the roll out of the £10.6m fund to cover closures of ‘wet pubs’- (pubs not serving food) which were closed between July and September last year.
You do not currently need to do anything. Department of the Economy has worked with LPS – Land and Property Services to identify eligible businesses.

Once the payment for a business, identified as a wet pub, has been verified and processed for the Department of Finance Localised Restrictions Support Scheme, DfE’s Wet Pubs Business Support Scheme team will contact those potentially eligible businesses via email.

They will provide a scheme supplementary information form to businesses identified as pre-eligible which asks businesses to declare when they were closed during the 4 July to 23 September period.
It is anticipated that all emails will be issued by 22 January 2021.

The form must be completed in full and returned to WPBSSforms@economy-ni.gov.uk within five days of issue.  You will receive an acknowledgement email when the form has been received.

If you believe you are eligible for this grant and you haven’t received an email by 22nd January 2021 please email your details to wpbss@economy-ni.gov.uk .  You will need to provide evidence of how your business operates as a wet pub and confirm that you were closed for at least one week during the period 4 July to 23 September.  This information must be provided by 29 January 2021. You should also contact us at Newry BID so we can support you through the process.

If you require further information please see below the eligibility criteria from NIBusinessInfo and a link to further information.

Eligibility Criteria
Who is eligible
Businesses meeting the following criteria will be eligible for the WPBSS:

  • The business is named within the Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) (No.2) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2020.

AND

  • The business is eligible for the Localised Restrictions Support Scheme.
  • The business was closed for at least one full week during the period 4 July to 23 September 2020. The applicant will be eligible to apply for the number of full weeks it was closed during this period.
  • Wet pubs who have an attached off licence business are eligible for support if the wet pub element of their business was closed.
  • Businesses must have been actively trading before they were forced to close due to COVID-19 lockdown/restrictions.

Exclusions
The following will be ineligible:

  • Businesses who operated at a reduced capacity (for example those who offered a takeaway service only).
  • Businesses which have failed to comply with a prohibition notice under regulation 7 of The Health Protection (Coronavirus, Restrictions) Regulations (Northern Ireland) 2020(b)) would not be eligible for support under the scheme.
  • Businesses that are:
  • dissolved or about to be dissolved, insolvent or for whom insolvency action had been instigated; or
  • dormant – ie not trading but not insolvent.

Find further information on the application process in the Wet Pubs Business Support Scheme – frequently asked questions (PDF, 409K). Frequently Asked Questions

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