SME Restart & Recovery Grants offer funding of up to £3,000 to Small & Medium businesses (SMEs), to cover costs arising from implementing “return to normal” activities from Covid-19, such as working with consultants and specialist advisors to devise new marketing and sales strategies, or to look at introducing a new product or service to the business in order to diversify. The grants can also be used to fund the purchase of specialist equipment (costing £4,999 or less) to help with business recovery or to help provide new-to-the business products and services.

Businesses will need to demonstrate the impact that Covid-19 has had on their business, and will also need to provide a brief business case on how they will use the grant, and how this will help the business “get back on its feet”.

Deadline to apply – Friday 12th March 2021


SME Restart & Recovery grants are funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) and there are therefore some eligibility restrictions that apply. This applies to both the type of business that can apply for a grant, and the type of activity that a grant can fund. Please see these criteria as follows.

Business Eligibility

To apply for a SME Restart & Recovery grant, your business must fulfil the following criteria:

1) Must be an SME, which means that your business has:

  • Fewer than 250 full time equivalent staff
  • An annual turnover of less than €50 million OR
  • A balance sheet total of less than €43 million

2) Must trade in the Humber region, which is:

  • Hull
  • East Yorkshire
  • North Lincolnshire
  • North East Lincolnshire

3) Must not be a business that operates in a sector that is inelligible to receive ERDF funding. These sectors are:

  • Agriculture
  • Banking & Insurance
  • Fisheries & Aquaculture
  • Steel Production
  • Shipbuilding
  • Synthetic Fibres
  • Public Sector

4) Your business must have been trading on or before 29th February 2020 and must not have been in financial difficulties on or before 31st December 2019. Any financial difficulties since that date must have been caused by Covid-19.

5) Your business must genuinely have been impacted negatively by Covid-19, and you must be able to prove this in your grant application form.

Project Eligibility

To apply for a SME Restart & Recovery grant, your proposed grant-funded “project” must fulfil the following criteria:

1) Your proposed grant-funded project must be able to lead to at least one or more of the following impacts on your business:

  • It safeguards the business
  • It safeguards jobs
  • It creates jobs
  • It creates new to the business products, services or processes.

2) The project must consist of activity that your business would not have otherwise done, where it not for Covid-19. These grants cannot fund “business as normal” costs such as general advertising costs, general accountants or lawyers fees etc. The grants can only fund projects that have occurred as a result of Covid-19.

3) Your proposed grant-funded project cannot include any costs that the business has already incurred. The grant can only be used for goods or services that the business has not yet committed to buy at the time of submitting the grant application.

4) The absolute maximum grant value is £3,000, but the total cost of the project can exceed this amount. However, any equipment bought with this grant cannot exceed £4,999 in value.

How To Apply

The application process will follow the following stages:

  • You provide us with details about your business on our pre-application registration form on our online application portal, by clicking on the weblink at the bottom of this page.
  • We review your business registration form to verify your business’s eligibility. Should your business be eligible, we will invite you to submit a grant application. This could take up to 5 working days.
  • You complete the grant application form on the online portal, which will ask you to declare the impact that Covid-19 and lockdown measures have had on your business, how you intend to use the grant, and how this will help with your business recovery. We will also ask you for some supporting documents too, such as financial accounts, bank statements, and supplier quotes. You can request assistance to complete your application from your local Growth Hub business advisor team – you can find their details here.
  • We review and then appraise your grant application against our objective scoring criteria, based on your answers to the application questions. We aim to notify applicants on the outcome of their application within 15 working days of receipt, although this could be as many as 20 working days, subject to application volumes.

Finally, we would encourage you to download and read the following documents before you commence your pre-application registration form:

What Happens Next

If your grant application is approved, we will issue you with a grant offer letter and agreement. Once you have signed and returned the agreement, you will be able to progress with your project.

Due to conditions of funding, the grant scheme will be working toward the following timescales:

  • Friday 12th March – Applications will close for final time (or earlier subject to application volumes)
  • Wednesday 31st March – Deadline for approval or rejection of grant applications (i.e you will know the outcome of your application no later than this date)
  • Friday 11th June – Deadline for businesses claiming grant from the Growth Hub (i.e projects must have completed and applicants must have paid their suppliers by this date)
  • Wednesday 30th June – Last day for grant payments to be made into business bank accounts.

Finally, we would encourage you to download and read the following documents before you commence your pre-application registration form:

To submit a pre-application registration form, click here:

Please note that you will first need to create an account for the East Riding of Yorkshire Council’s “Flexigrant” portal. This is a straighforward process that asks for your name and contact details, plus requests you to set a password. This step will take no more than 2 minutes of your time before you access the pre-application registration form proper.