Brexit related updates
- Advice For Visa Applicants And Temporary Residents
The guidance for visa applicants and temporary residents has been updated for those seeking leave to remain in the UK along the same lines as I mentioned last week regarding those seeking to remain in the UK under the EU Settlement Scheme. This means that the Home Office will:
- consider employment income for the period immediately before the loss of income for people whose income has been impacted by Coronavirus
- take account of your full income if you were on furlough
- disregard a loss of annual income due to coronavirus between 1 March 2020 and 31 October 2021 if you are self-employed
- overlook a short break of up to 6 months in continuous residence for those unable to travel back to the UK due to coronavirus travel restrictions between 1 March 2020 and 19 July 2021
- decide an application without seeing certain specified documents, if you cannot get them due to coronavirus, until 31 December 2021.
- Consultation On Second Homes In Wales
Staying with Wales, the Government has also announced a consultation on proposed planning changes. This consultation seek views on the use of ‘class order’ in planning which would allow local planning authorities to require planning applications for additional second homes and short-term holiday lets in areas where they are causing significant difficulties for communities.
This consultation will shape a pilot programme which could involve making changes to planning, taxation and tourism systems and could have significant implications for the self-catering sector as well as destinations that are reliant on this accommodation type.
- Kickstart Guidance Updated
There have been two small changes to the Kickstart guidance for employers:
- A Participant may not commence a Kickstart Scheme job after 31 March 2022. If any Participant commences any job after 31 March 2022, they shall not be classed as a Participant under this Grant Agreement and no payment will be due to the Grant Recipient under this Grant Agreement with respect to that individual.
- Project End Date means, subject to any early termination provisions contained within this Grant Agreement, 30 November 2022
- New Funding In Wales
The Welsh Government has announce that a £45m pot is to be made available to train staff and help Welsh SMEs. Of this, £10m will be given to further education colleges to deliver additional courses and qualifications to support 2,000 people to access a wider range of job opportunities and increase their earning potential in priority sectors. These include hospitality - including chefs, catering assistants, waiting and front of house staff
TIC Update 23 November
Made in the UK, Sold to the World
On 17 November the Government launched a new ‘Made in the UK, Sold to the World’ plan to help businesses across the UK double exports and sell their world-class products around the globe. The Department for International Trade (DIT)'s 12-point export strategy includes the launch of a new UK Tradeshow Programme (UKTP), tailored to help businesses attend and promote their products around the world. The document captures the importance of business events, highlighting that international tradeshows are an invaluable opportunity for businesses to showcase their products to consumers and partners.It also recognises that the travel sector is the UK’s third largest service export, and references the Tourism Recovery Plan's framework for rebuilding the sector.
Integrated Rail Plan
The Government last week published the Integrated Rail Plan - an ambitious strategy setting out £96 billion worth of investment into the railways of the North and Midlands to support economic growth by transforming both East-West and North-South links. The plan will improve leisure travel across the North, as well as access to key international gateways and markets so they become even more attractive for business investments. This will enable the North to realise its economic potential and maximise opportunities for international travel and trade. For more information, please see the Department for Transport’s press notice.
Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund
A reminder that the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has urged organisations to apply for the second and final round of the Natural Environment Investment Readiness Fund. The fund of up to £10 million will provide grants of up to £100,000 to councils, environmental groups, businesses and other organisations to help them develop nature projects in England to a point where they can attract private investment. Funding will be invested in a broad range of projects that will deliver environmental benefits and are designed to provide a return on investment by capturing the value of the carbon, water quality, biodiversity and other benefits provided by natural assets such as woodlands, peatlands, catchments and landscapes. Please see more information here.
Environment Act becomes law
On 10 November, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) announced the Environment Act has now passed into UK law. The Act will help to clean up the country’s air, restore natural habitats, increase biodiversity, reduce waste and make better use of resources. It intends to halt the decline in species by 2030, require new developments to improve or create habitats for nature, and tackle deforestation overseas. These changes will be driven by new legally binding environmental targets, and enforced by a new, independent Office for Environmental Protection (OEP) which will hold the government and public bodies to account on their environmental obligations. Please see here for more information.
Volunteering Futures Fund
The core objective of the fund is to support young people and people who experience barriers to volunteering, to build their skills, well-being and social networks through volunteering. We particularly want to create more and better volunteering opportunities for people:
- who experience loneliness,
- who experience barriers to volunteering, and
- in areas where there are fewer volunteering opportunities.
DCMS has confirmed our delivery partners for this fund and will formally announce them imminently. Our Arms Length Body partner, Arts Council England (ACE) has begun a soft launch, sharing some information publicly ahead of the portal for applications opening to allow for conversations about potential partnerships to begin. Through its strand of the fund ACE will enable people to get involved in volunteering activities across the arts, heritage, museums, libraries, sport and physical activity, youth and other community settings. For more information on how to express an interest with ACE when the programme opens on 22nd November, please find out more here.