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15 Nov

Government Announces Support for Flood-Hit Farmers

Flood-hit farmers in northern England will be able to apply for up to £25,000 in govt grants to help them get back on their feet. The government has announced they will extend the Farming Recovery Fund to support farmers badly affected by the floods.

14 Nov

Business Brexit Checklist

The Business Brexit Checklist has been created to help you consider the changes that Brexit may bring to your company, and to help business planning at both operational and Board levels.

13 Nov

Invitation to Tender: ScaleUp360 Programme Workshops and Business Advice

A procurement opportunity has arisen for a bank of high growth business support specialists to supply 1-2-1 business advice and workshops to businesses and entrepreneurs in the Sheffield City Region (SCR).

Chamber reaction to today’s Budget

Posted on November 22nd, 2017

Reacting to today’s Budget, Chris Hobson, Director of Policy at the Chamber, said it held “no game-changers” but “a number of smaller announcements that will please some people”.

Chris Hobson
He said: “It was good to see that the rising cost of Business Rates will be slowed from next year with the switch from Retail Price Index to Consumer Price Index measures brought forward two years and the promise of three-yearly reviews instead of five, so the impact of revaluations will be less.

“The switch to CPI is something the Chamber had called for, but we think Mr Hammond could have gone further to reduce the upfront costs businesses face.

“It was interesting to see that the areas that have moved forward with devolution plans and have, or will have, elected mayors are starting to reap rewards. That doesn’t apply to the East Midlands and should serve to focus the discussions of politicians across the region.

“The devil will be in the detail when it comes to moves to make houses more affordable. Past Budgets have talked about building more houses. This Budget talked about an additional 300,000 new houses and other moves to nudge the market when it comes to sales at the lower end of the ladder, such as the abolition of Stamp Duty for first-time buyers on properties worth up to £300,000, but we’ll have to see if that will be enough to stimulate the market.

“The new focus on retraining towards digital for older employees is welcome, but do the measures announced go far enough? It was also interesting to hear that there are plans for a new national centre for computing – this could be an opportunity for the East Midlands.

“All in all, this Budget was something of a missed opportunity for the Government to invest meaningfully in those areas that will support the wealth creators of the UK, large and small - investment we need if we are to unharness the full potential of our businesses and investment which should not be viewed as a cost as it will repay itself many times over the longer term.”