The state of the economy heading into 2021 and the prospects for growth over the rest of the year.
Like many businesses in the tourism and leisure sectors, fair and showground operators have been impacted by the pandemic. Current rules on fair and showground openings will differ depending on the rules in each local area, see the Library briefing paper, Coronavirus: the lockdown laws for further information.
The UK Government has provided various financial support schemes for businesses through the pandemic; most of these are available to businesses in all sectors. The Government has not provided specific support for fair and showground operators in addition to these wider schemes. Fairs and showground businesses may benefit from some support targeted to hospitality, tourism and leisure sectors, such as the reduced VAT rate for tourism attractions. The Library briefing: Coronavirus: support for businesses provides further information.
On 9 December the Scottish Government announced an additional support package for businesses in Scotland, targeted by sector. This included £1.5 million for “travelling show people ineligible for other support” along with funding for other tourism, hospitality and leisure sectors.
The following sources may provide useful background to the topic of this debate.
Greater support needed for Showpeople, David Linden MP, 23 November 2020
PQ113510, Fairgrounds: Non-domestic Rates, answered on 16 November 2020
PQ120081, Fairgrounds: Coronavirus, answered on 2 December 2020
PQ118502, Fairgrounds: Coronavirus, answered on 30 November 2020
PQ100539, Fairgrounds: Coronavirus, answered on 15 October 2020
Targeted support for suffering sectors worth £185m announced by Scottish Government, The Scotsman, 9 December 2020
‘If we don’t fight our corner we’ll never open again’: Future of funfairs in Wakefield in jeopardy? Wakefield Express, 25 November 2020
Historic culture of Scotland’s showpeople under threat, experts warn, The Herald, 7 September 2020
Showtime: what the future holds for Scotland’s travelling showpeople, Holyrood, 3 February 2020
Library briefing papers
Coronavirus: support for businesses, 14 December 2020
Coronavirus: New business grant schemes explained, 17 November 2020
Coronavirus restrictions explained, various briefings
An Opposition Day debate relating to employment rights, holiday pay and 48-hour weekly working limits has been scheduled for Monday 25 January 2021.
Why most businesses are unlikely to benefit from last week's Supreme Court decision, even if they held interruption policies.