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Highland leisure businesses urged to apply for Omicron support grant

Inverness Leisure Centre has had to introduce physical distancing and limit classes.
Inverness Leisure Centre has had to introduce physical distancing and limit classes.

Leisure businesses in the Highlands are being encouraged to apply for financial grants to help offset the impact of the Omicron-based restrictions.

Restrictions including physical distancing and capacity limits returned to leisure venues to curb the spread of the highly transmissible Omicron variant.

Measures brought in on Boxing Day meant that gyms, sports centres and leisure facilities were unable to function at full capacity over the Christmas period.

Although First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has lifted most of the emergency restrictions now – with the hospitality rules the latest to ease come Monday – the government has announced a grant scheme to offset the impact they have had.

Grants of up more than £3,000 available

Grants of up to £3,150 will be made available to leisure businesses that have been negatively impacted by measures to curb Omicron.

Eligible businesses include conference centres, music venues and art facilities, sport facilities, gyms, leisure centres, outdoor centres, cinemas, amusement arcades, bingo halls and casinos, soft play areas and snooker clubs.

Chairwoman of Highland Council’s economy and infrastructure committee Trish Robertson urged companies to come forward before the deadline at the end of January.

“If the business is an eligible one, and previously received a grant from the Council, we have today (Wednesday, January 19) written directly to them and have invited them to complete a short online form if they wish to receive grant support.

“At the moment the grant scheme is open until the end of January, but we urge all businesses not to wait until then but to complete and submit the online form as soon as possible.”

“If a leisure business does not receive a direct email from us, and they think they may be eligible, they must go the Scottish Government’s Find Business Support website, read the guidance provided and follow instructions as to how they can apply.”


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