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Business Rates

Retail Discount 2019-20 and 2020-21

Rate Retail Discount for occupied retail properties with a rateable value of less than £51,000

The Government announced in the Budget on 29 October 2018 that it will provide a Business Rates Retail Discount scheme for occupied retail properties with a rateable value of less than £51,000 in each of the years 2019-20 and 2020-21. The value of discount for 2019-20 should be one third of the bill and for 2020-21 100% of the bill. This discount must be applied after mandatory reliefs and other discretionary relief have been applied bar the pub relief.  Please note that the Government have indicated that the discount will be 50% from 2021-22 if the retail discount scheme continues.

To qualify, the retail property should be wholly or mainly used as a shop, retail place, restaurant, cafe or drinking establishment. The Council will consider each award based on individual merits and reserves the right to decline or withdraw an award.

 Eligible retail properties descriptions

For the purposes of this discount the Council considers shops, restaurants, cafes and drinking establishments to mean:

1. Retail properties that are being used for the sale of goods to visiting members of the public:

  • Shops (such as: florist, bakers, butchers, grocers, greengrocers, jewellers, stationers, off licence, chemists, newsagents, hardware stores, supermarkets, and so on)
  • Charity shops
  • Opticians
  • Post offices
  • Furnishing shops/display rooms (such as: carpet shops, double glazing)
  • Car/caravan show rooms
  • Second hand car lots
  • Markets
  • Petrol stations
  • Garden centres
  • Art galleries (where art is for sale/hire)

2. Retail properties that are being used for the provision of the following services to visiting members of the public:

  • Hair and beauty services (such as: hair dressers, nail bars, beauty salons, tanning shops and so on)
  • Shoe repairs/key cutting
  • Travel agents
  • Ticket offices e.g. for theatre
  • Dry cleaners
  • Launderettes
  • PC/TV/domestic appliance repair
  • Funeral directors
  • Photo processing
  • Tool hire
  • Car hire

3. Retail properties that are being used for the sale of food and/ or drink to visiting members of the public:

  • Restaurants Takeaways
  • Sandwich shops
  • Coffee shops
  • Pubs
  • Bars

4. Properties which are being used as cinemas

5. Properties that are being used as live music venues 

This is not a complete list, if you think you may qualify, please apply. 

Ineligible retail properties descriptions

The list below sets out the types of uses that the Council does not consider to be retail use for the purpose of this relief.

1. Retail properties that are being used for the provision of the following services to visiting members of the public:

  • Financial services (e.g. banks, building societies, cash points, bureau de change, payday lenders, betting shops, pawn brokers)
  • Other services (e.g. estate agents, letting agents, employment agencies)
  • Medical services (e.g. vets, dentists, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors)
  • Professional services (e.g. solicitors, accountants, insurance agents/ financial advisers, tutors)
  • Post office sorting office

2. Retail properties that are not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public.

3. Retail properties that do not support the Council’s wider objectives or have a detrimental impact on neighbourhoods and communities.

How to apply

We will try and award Retail Discount automatically but please contact us if you believe you qualify and it is not shown on your business rates bill. 

State Aid De Minimis Regulations and Business Rate Discounts

For information about State Aid de minimis please go to: www.gov.uk/state-aid

Additional Notes

Eligibility for the Retail Discount and the discount itself will be assessed and calculated on a daily basis. The Retail Discount will be applied against the net bill after all other reliefs (apart from pub relief).

Ratepayers that occupy more than one property will be entitled to relief for each of their eligible properties, subject to State Aid de minimis limits.

Budget 2020

This has extended for one year only Retail Discount to Leisure and Hospitality ratepayers with a rateable value below £51,000.  We are trying to establish the exact details.  We will update this webpage when this is known.