Lancashire firms boosted by new package

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Over 7,500 businesses in Lancashire are set to benefit from the biggest package of business rate support in over 20 years to help high streets, Communities Secretary Eric Pickles claimed today.

Many businesses already get 100 per cent discount as a result of Government policy.

The tax changes that come into effect at the start of the new tax year mean nearly 300,000 eligible small shops in England will benefit further.

In some cases, this could give a typical small shop, pub or restaurant, with a rateable value of £10,000, savings of 30 per cent extra or more when compared to last year’s business rate bill.

In addition to the new business rate discounts, specially targeted to support small shops, all businesses can now choose to spread their bill payments over 12 monthly instalments rather than ten, after rules were changed to give businesses greater control over their cash flow.

Mr Pickles said today’s new measures would make a huge difference for struggling small shop owners, and help businesses and high streets across the country build a stronger economy.

Estimates published for the first time today reveal where the premises eligible for the new £1,000 retail discount are located.

In Lancashire they show an estimated 990 in Blackpool, 790 in Preston, 750 in South Ribble, 740 in Wyre, 660 in Lancaster, 520 in West Lancashire, 500 in Fylde, 490 in Chorley, 460 in Blackburn with Darwen, 440 in Pendle, 430 in Burnley, 400 in Ribble Valley, 370 in Hyndburn and 200 in Rossendale.

A total of 7,740 businesses are now set to benefit, as well as shops and pubs in small rural and suburban communities.

Mr Pickles said: “A key part of the Government’s long-term economic plan is to back business with lower taxes.

“Small shops are the lifeblood of local economies, and today’s changes will mean a massive boost to our town centres – helping to create more jobs and securing a better future for our children.

“A whole string of changes to business rates kick in today, bringing new support to local shops, pubs and firms. In some cases shopkeepers could see their bills cut by a third.”

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