Wales: Guidance and Support

Wales: Guidance and Support

See below for Wales' close contact guidance, lockdown information, and financial support options to help salons affected by the COVID-19 Pandemic...

Lockdown

Wales is currently in a full lockdown. All salons and close contact services must remain closed. There is no end date with the lockdown, instead being reviewed every few weeks.

Financial Support

Please see below the current financial support and help available to businesses in Wales that are affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Job Retention Scheme (Furlough)

UK Chancellor, Rishi Sunak has extended the furlough scheme until the end of April 21. Employees on furlough will receive 80% of their pay, up to a maximum of £2,500 a month. The deadline dates for claiming under the extended furlough scheme are:

  • 14 January 2021 – final date to submit claims for December 2020 by 11:59pm
  • 15 February 2021 – final date to submit claims for January 2021 by 11:59pm
  • 15 March 2021 – final date to submit claims for February 2021 by 11:59pm
  • 14 April 2021 – final date to submit claims for March 2021 by 11:59pm
  • 14 May 2021 – final date to submit claims for April 2021 by 11:59pm

To see more on the Job Retention Scheme and how to claim, click here.

 

Business Grants

One-off top up grants for retail, hospitality, and leisure businesses worth up to £9,000 per property are available to help them through to this spring.

The grant is provided on a per-property basis to support businesses through this latest lockdown, and is expected to benefit over 600,000 business properties, worth £4 billion in total across all nations of the UK.

The one-off top-ups will be granted to closed businesses as follows:

  • £4,000 for businesses with a rateable value of £15,000 or under
  • £6,000 for businesses with a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000
  • £9,000 for businesses with a rateable value of over £51,000

These grants will be available via your local council, so keep an eye on their website for more information and how to apply! Click here for more information on the grants.

 

Economic Resilience Fund

The Economic Resilience Fund was created to help support businesses affected by the pandemic. This fund includes the Restrictions Business Fund which will be delivered by local authorities. These payments may be paid directly into your accounts, but you are advised to check your local authority’s website on a regular basis for updates and how and when to apply. Eligibility for the Restrictions Business Fund is:

  • Businesses in the hospitality and non-essential retail sector that are in receipt of Small Business Rate Relief (SBRR) and have a rateable value of £12,000 or less will be eligible for a £3,000 payment.
  • Hospitality and non-essential retail businesses with a rateable value of between £12,001 and £51,000 will also be eligible for a £5,000 payment if impacted by the restrictions.
  • An additional measure to previous rounds, hospitality and non-essential retail businesses with a rateable value of between £51,001 and £150,000 will also be eligible for a £5,000 payment if impacted by the restrictions.

To see more on the Restrictions Business Fund, click here.

 

Development Bank of Wales Loans

For details of the financial support available from the Development Bank of Wales please visit their website here.

 

Bounce Back Loans

The COVID-19 Bounce Back Loan Scheme enables businesses to obtain a six-year term loan at a government set interest rate of 2.5% a year.

  • up to £50,000 loan – loans will be from £2,000 up to 25% of a business’ turnover or £50,000, whichever is lower
  • 100% guarantee – the scheme provides the lender with a government-backed, full guarantee (100%) against the outstanding facility balance, both capital and interest
  • interest rate – the UK Government has set the interest rate for this facility at 2.5% per annum, meaning businesses will all benefit from the same, low rate of interest
  • interest paid by the UK Government for 12 months – the UK government will make a Business Interruption Payment to the lenders to cover the first 12 months of interest payable, so businesses will benefit from no upfront costs

To see more on the UK government’s Bounce Back Loan Scheme, click here.

 

Business Interruption Loan Scheme

A temporary Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme provides lenders with a guarantee of 80% on each loan (subject to a per-lender cap on claims) to give lenders further confidence in continuing to provide finance to SMEs. The government will not charge businesses or banks for this guarantee, and the Scheme will support loans of up to £5 million in value. Businesses can access the first 12 months of that finance interest free, as government will cover the first 12 months of interest payments.

More details on the Business Interruption Loan Scheme can be found here.

Close Contact Services Guidance

Full details on the guidance that salons and freelancers must follow during the COVID-19 pandemic can be found here.

Quick guidance summary:

  • You must complete a risk assessment for your salon
  • Where possible, you must keep a social distance of 2m
  • Maintain handwashing/sanitization
  • A visor and a Type II face mask must be worn
  • Use a consistent team pairing/bubble system
  • Maintain a high level of hygiene throughout the salon

Further steps:

  • Encourage clients to use hand sanitizer or hand washing facilities as they enter the premises or before treatment.
  • Clients must wear masks.
  • When booking an appointment, asking the client if they can attend on their own, where possible.
  • Adjusting how people move through the premises to reduce congestion and contact between clients, for example, queue management or one-way flow. This may only be possible in larger salons.
  • Operating an appointment-only system.
  • Encouraging clients to arrive at the time of their scheduled appointment.
  • Seeking to avoid skin to skin contact with colleagues, and clients if not crucial for the treatment, and wearing gloves where possible.

COVID-19 related screening questions to be asked of clients ahead of their appointment, including:

  1. Have you had the recent onset of a new continuous cough?
  2. Do you have a high temperature?
  3. Have you noticed a loss of, or change in, normal sense of taste or smell?

If the client has any of these symptoms, however mild, they should stay at home and reschedule their appointment.

To download the Welsh checklist on COVID-19 safety, click here.

Client Information Collection and NHS App

It is mandatory for all salons in Wales to collect client information when attending their appointment. The information you will need to collect is the client's name, contact details, date of appointment, and time of arrival and departure. As almost all salons use a booking system or diary, this should be sufficient for you to continue taking your client details with. If you do not use such a system, then you will need to start collecting your clients details for track and trace.

In addition to this law is the NHS COVID-19 app. It is mandatory for all salons to display their unique QR code in the salon ready for clients to scan should they be using the app. You can download your QR code here.