Reopening guidance for businesses

business support

As of 19 July, we will move to Step 4 of the government roadmap out of lockdown.

All remaining closed businesses and venues such as nightclubs and adult entertainment venues will be able to reopen.

All capacity limits at sporting, entertainment, or business events will be lifted.

Hospitality venues such as pubs, restaurants and bars will no longer be required to provide table service or follow other social distancing rules.

All businesses should follow the principles set out in the working safely guidance. Whilst the Government is no longer instructing people to work from home if they can, the Government would expect and recommend a gradual return over the summer.

Employers will still have a legal duty to manage risks to those affected by their business. The way to do this is to carry out a health and safety risk assessment, including the risk of COVID-19, and to take reasonable steps to mitigate the risks you identify. Working Safely guidance sets out a range of mitigations employers should consider including:

  • cleaning surfaces that people touch regularly;
  • identifying poorly-ventilated areas in the venue and taking steps to improve air flow;
  • ensuring that staff and customers who are unwell do not attend the workplace or venue;
  • communicating to staff and customers the measures you have put in place.
  • Turn away people with COVID-19 symptoms

Other considerations include:

  • The continued use of PPE/face coverings
  • The use of fixed teams or partnering
  • Reducing contact between staff
  • Testing and vaccinations

Organisations in higher risk settings are encouraged to use the NHS COVID Pass as a condition of entry, in order to reduce the risk of COVID-19. This will especially be the case in large crowded settings where people are likely to be in close proximity to others outside their household. The Government reserves the right to mandate certification in certain venues at a later date if necessary.

To support organisations and individuals in these settings, the NHS COVID Pass will be made available through the NHS App, NHS.UK, or as a letter that can be requested by ringing NHS 119. Visitors will also be able to show text or email confirmation of test results. Organisations should ensure they are in compliance with all legal obligations, including on equalities.

There are some settings where the NHS COVID Pass should not be used as a condition of entry, in order to ensure access for all. This includes essential services and essential retailers which have been able to stay open throughout the pandemic.

Businesses are also encouraged to continue displaying QR codes for customers wishing to check in using the NHS COVID-19 app, or to continue collecting customer contact details to support NHS Test and Trace, however this will no longer be a legal requirement.

If you are a hospitality business (pub, café, bar or restaurant) you may be able to apply for a Pavement Licence to allow for seating outside your premises. This licence was introduced last summer to help hospitality businesses operate safely while social distancing measures remain in place.

If you are a retail business and are interested in trading outside your premises, you might be eligible for a Street Trading Licence.

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Keeping your workplace and business safe during re-opening is vital. The government has provided advice for keeping your workplace safe during Covid-19.

There is also advice from the HSE on keeping your workplace safe.

Further general advice on key steps for businesses to reopen safely can be found on our webpage.

Licenses Click to get info

The Business and Planning Act 2020 has different measures that will help businesses to reopen.

If you are a hospitality business (pub, café, bar or restaurant) you may be able to apply for a Pavement Licence to allow for seating outside your premises. This licence was introduced last summer to help hospitality businesses operate safely while social distancing measures remain in place. For more information on pavement licences, please see our FAQs

If you are a retail business and are interested in trading outside your premises, you might be eligible for a Street Trading Licence.

Find more information about licenses and street trading

 

Business Support Click to get info

Waltham Forest Connected Business Directory

You can register your business on Waltham Forest Connected Business Directory.

Find out information about the directory register your business on the Waltham Forest Connected Business Directory and how to add your business The Council will be holding a webinars on 7 April 2021 to help businesses in the reopening process. The sessions will include information on:

  • Reopening your business safely
  • Licenses such as pavement licenses that may be available to hospitality businesses to allow for seating outside your premises
  • Grants like the recently announced Restart Grants
  • General information on support available to businesses

Digital Skills Training and Support

Microsoft have a variety of initiatives to help you and your business improve your digital and technical skills and knowledge and including a global skills initiative and free online courses and virtual training days. You can find out more about these on our Adult Learning page and Microsoft’s website.

Find out more about digital and ICT courses that we offer with our partners.

Schemes and funding 

There are a number of schemes and organisations that can help your business to reopen and thrive:

  • Resilience Fund is the Mayor of London’s £1 million challenge fund calling on innovators to address key challenges facing London, help us emerge stronger from COVID-19 and ensure the capital is prepared for future disruptive challenges.
  • Applications close on 1 April 2021. 

Enterprise Nation is launching a three-month campaign called 'Hello, World' offering advice on the legalities around refunds, raising money to buy new stock/equipment, and how to pivot back to the physical world. Content thus far is:

Find out more about Hello, World

The British Business Bank has outlined some tips and steps to take to build your resilience and diversify your processes, services and offering. Business resilience is never tested more than during challenging economic circumstances. Building a more resilient business, with more resilient processes, can be the difference between surviving and going under.

Access the tools

The British Library's Reset. Restart programme is here to help you transform, future-proof or grow your business through the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond and is open to all business owners especially those in the first years of trading.

Join one or more of their series of ten monthly webinars for practical, jargon-free training and advice; network with other entrepreneurs and receive further tailored support.

Find out more about the Reset. Restart programme

Choose Local Click to get info

Based on the success of Choose Local campaign we will be launching a third phase to highlight some of the brilliant businesses in the borough and encourage residents to choose local and use their spending power locally.