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Coronavirus Business support: what’s changed in April?

29 Apr 20

Since the middle of March, the Government has announced a series of measures to financially support businesses affected by the outbreak of COVID-19.
As the situation changes day by day, it can be hard to keep up with the pace of those announcements, and to know which support measures are currently available to you.
In the last few weeks, the Government says it has spent more than £15 billion on COVID-19 business support schemes, the most recent of which arrived in the form of bounce-back loans.
Here's a round-up of the main support measures announced as of the end of April, and how to access them.


Coronavirus job retention scheme

The coronavirus job retention scheme, which allows employers to claim 80% of their furloughed employees' usual wages up to £2,500, was announced at the end of March, and so far more than 500,000 claims have been made through it.

Updates were made to the scheme throughout April including the announcement on 3 April that off-payroll contractors working for public-sector organisations would be covered.
The scheme has also been extended until the end of June, and the cut-off date for eligibility was moved so that it applies to workers who were employed and on PAYE on or before 19 March 2020 - instead of 28 February as previously announced.

The portal through which employers can claim for their furloughed staff's wages under the scheme opened on 20 April, and can be accessed here

Support for the self-employed

Under a scheme announced on 26 March, self-employed people who have suffered a loss in income because of coronavirus will receive a taxable grant worth 80% of their usual profits, up to £2,500 a month.

It has been confirmed that HMRC will contact those who are eligible in mid-May, with the intention of making payments by early June.


Government loan schemes

The coronavirus business interruption loan scheme went live on 23 March, and was extended on 3 April so that more businesses would be eligible.

The changes included preventing lenders from requesting personal guarantees on loans under £250,000, as well as operational changes to speed up approvals.

A separate coronavirus large business interruption loan scheme also opened on 3 April, which offered a Government guarantee of 80% on loans of up to £25 million, for firms with an annual turnover between £45m and £500m.

In addition, a ‘future fund' was revealed to provide Government loans ranging from £125,000 to £5m, for companies that can find equal funding from private investors, and that meet other qualifying conditions. This scheme will open in May, and more details can be found here

And on 27 April, a ‘bounce-back loans' scheme was announced, in response to concerns that other schemes were taking too long to access.

This will open on 4 May and offer small businesses microloans of 25% of their turnover, up to a maximum of £50,000, with the Government paying the interest for the first 12 months.


Small business grants

Emergency grants for small businesses in England were announced in March. These include £10,000 for businesses eligible for small business rate relief, and of £25,000 for qualifying retail, hospitality and leisure businesses.

As of 27 April, councils had distributed around £7.5bn of the £12.3bn available, but more than a third of businesses identified as eligible had yet to receive their grant.

You can find out whether you're eligible for this, or other Government support here


Other changes

Other changes made in April include:
Year-long business rate holidays began on 1 April for qualifying businesses in England.
A temporary ban on statutory demands and winding-up petitions issued to commercial tenants was put in place, to protect high-street businesses.
The second phase of Making Tax Digital for VAT, which would have included the requirement for digital links, was delayed until 1 April 2021.
A £750m funding package for UK charities was announced.



Covid 19 - Support for businesses  

I have just received this newsletter from my own accountant, RBS Accountants, summarising the current support for businesses. There still doesn't seem to be an element for Catering Franchises within clubs. We are trying to gather as much information for members to try an establish what help the government can provide in these cases. If anybody has any information about this we would like to circulate. If your own club is helping you out it would a positive message that we could pass on and encourage others.
Keep well

Ian Duncan 
National President


  Current support for businesses

          We understand many of you will have questions regarding your business in these uncertain times. Therefore please see below a list of the current support for businesses being offered by the government;
No income tax payments will be due in July 2020. This has been deferred to January 2021 with no penalties or interest added in the deferral period. This is applied automatically so there is no need to contact HMRC.
No VAT payments due between the period 20/03/20 to 30/06/20. There will be no penalties added during this period and you will have until the end of the year to make payment. Again this is applied automatically by HMRC.
Business Interruption Loan Scheme  - This is a 12 month interest free loan to help with short term cash flow, 80% of which is guaranteed by the government. To apply for the loan please contact your bank.
Sick pay – Up to 2 weeks Statutory Sick Pay per employee for coronavirus related sickness will be repaid by government. The scheme is still currently being set up so you would pay employees SSP as normal then reclaim this at a later date.
Job Retention Scheme – This scheme is for those employees granted an absence of leave, but who will remain on the payroll and you will struggle to pay them. The Government will pay 80% of these employees’ wages, up to £2500 per month. You will need to inform HMRC through a new online portal which is still currently being set up. This will hopefully be running by the end of April but claims can be backdated to the 1st March. It is initially for 3 Months but government have said it will run longer if necessary.
Retail/Hospitality/Leisure – If your business is in this area there will be no rates for 2020/21 and this will be applied automatically. There is also a Retail Hospitality Grant scheme which gives £10k for those with a rateable value under £15k, £25k if rateable value is between £15-51k. Your local authority will write to you if you are eligible.
Nurseries – No Business rates for the 2020/21 year which will be automatically applied.
Small Business Rates Relief – If you already receive this you will be eligible for a £10k grant. Again your local authority will write to you about this.
Time To Pay – If you can’t pay your other taxes at the moment please call the dedicated helpline – 08000159559 – and you should be offered help under the Time to Pay scheme
Suspension of the minimum income floor for the self-employed - self-employed people can now access, in full, Universal Credit at a rate equivalent to Statutory Sick Pay for employees.
Universal Credit - The standard allowance will rise over the next 12 months by £1,000.



Goverment Support for Small Businesses - latest updates

We are trying to gather as much information as we can to help Stewards/Catering Franchises/ Chefs, House Managers whether employed, self employed or small business owners. Please feed back any information that we can share with our members and colleagues during this very difficult period.

Kind Regards

Ian Duncan
National President


Click on the link below for the latest updates on support for businesses from the government with regard to COVID - 19  




Dear Members

With the rapidly escalating situation over the last few days, and following the latest advice received from Public Health England, a number of conversations and exchanges of email have taken place between the National Chairman, Section Secretaries and key members of the National Executive, as a result of which it has been agreed and decided to postpone the AGM scheduled to be held at Olton Golf Club on Monday 6th April. The safety and well being of our members is, and must always be our prime concern, particularly since a number of us likely to be attending fall into the "over 65's" or "underlying conditions" categories!

With doubt and uncertainty surrounding our future fixtures and meetings it seemed unfair that Steve Arnold should take over the position of National Chairman in what will inevitably be a disrupted and interrupted season. It was therefore agreed that Richard Berry Jnr would continue as National Chairman for the remainder of 2020/21, and Steve will assume the Chairmanship in 2021.

For the moment all other remaining national fixtures, competitions and Executive meetings remain as scheduled, the next meeting being Monday 11th May at Stowmarket, but the position will of course be reviewed, and a revised date for the AGM advised as the Coronavirus situation develops, and further Government advice is received.

Kind Regards and keep well !!

Steve Fowler
National Secretary GCSA
07929 716095



CLACTON GOLF CLUB Monday 23 September 2019

The sun shone at Clacton on Sea as the Stewards Association held its final National meeting of the year. Considering the lack of rain in the region the course was in excellent condition for the individual stableford competition.playing for the C J Small Trophy and the Chairman’s Salver. 

The Golf Club Stewards Association first met and was created at Clacton back in 1912 and as always the golf club gave the association a very warm welcome and their hospitality was very much appreciated.

Life Members and both former National Chairman, Joanna and Colin England made a welcome surprise visit travelling over from their new home in Spain. The association also welcomed new members Tom Crouch and Mike Verhelst from Bury St Edmunds Golf Club.

The guest prize was won by Dave Bicknell from Stowmarket Golf Club with a superb 43 points. National Chairman Richard Bury Jnr won the Stewards Salver with 37 points. Phil Beer picked up the Past Chairman’s CJ Small Trophy with 33 points

Full Results:

1st – Richard Berry Jr: 37Pts
2nd – Boyd Weaver: 36Pts
3rd – Tom Crouch: 35Pts 
1st – David Bicknell: 43Pts
CJ Small Trophy (Past National Chairmen):
Winner: Phil Beer: 33Pts
Nearest the Pins:
7th Hole: Ian Duncan
17th Hole: David Sutton

Tom Crouch: 2nd Hole
Mike Verhelst: 5th Hole
Richard Berry Jr: 7th Hole

Happy Stewards

Bar at Clacton

In The Bar

Life Members Colin & Joanna with Andy Frewin

Nearest the Pin

President Ian Presents the Chairmans Salver

President Ian wins nearest the pin

Richard Presents the Prize for Past Chairmans Trousers

Small trophy for Phil Beer

Winning Guest Dave Bicknell

Tom Crouch

Boyd Weaver

Richards last address


NEC Meeting, Blackwell GC, Monday 19th August 2019

J&B Trophy:

1st – Owain Hoskins         39 Pts
2nd – Paul Leary               36 Pts
3rd – Mike Wiseman        34 Pts

1st – Ray Hamilton           43 Pts
2nd – Matthew Langman  40 Pts

Teachers Stewards Championship:
Winning Team – Midlands   108 Pts
Owain Hoskins, Steve Arnold, Paul Leary, Dave Guest

Hole  6 – Mike Wiseman
Hole  9 – Wayne Marsden
Hole  6 – John Billing
Hole  9 – Matthew Langman
Hole  9 – Richard Berry Jr   

Nearest the Pins:
Hole   9 – Richard Berry Jr
Hole   13 – Ray Hamilton




Monday 9th July 2019 – Peterborough Milton Golf Club


Stewards and guests from across the UK attended the National Chairman’s Day for Richard Berry Jnr hosted at his own club Peterborough Milton in Cambridgeshire. The hospitality of the Berry family, as always, was superb and they even managed to provide a warm sunny day for the 27 hole competitions.

Everybody commented on the superb condition of the course and the setting.

The morning round was a Greensomes Medal competition playing for the Laurent Perrier Trophy. Winners of the competition were guests Stowmarket pairing Dave Bicknell and Charlie Joseph who finished with a nett 34.81. Second placed Boyd Weaver and Angelo Rodriguez who took the Laurent Perrier Trophy for the Stewards with 35.12.

Following a light lunch the afternoon round was a fourball better ball competition for the prestigious Coronation Cup and an individual stableford competition for the Stewards playing for the Chairman’s Millennium Trophy.

Mike Trippett, a new member from the North East, had a great day with 38 points winning on countback from Midland section Steward Paul Leary to win the individual Stewards Competition.

The Coronation Trophy was won by Southern Section member John Billings playing with Peterborough Milton member Geoff Dyson with a fantastic 45 points narrowly beating Midland representatives Paul Leary and David Guest by 1 point.

With wine provided on each table by our hosts we were treated to a a smashing meal followed by a thank you from host Richard Berry Jnr for the support from the association membership and guests.

The presentations and raffle took place in the bar area after the meal. The Association would like to thank everybody at Peterborough Milton Golf Club for providing the venue and hosting such a successful and fun event.

The next meeting is a Blackwell Golf Club in Worcestershire on Monday 19th August 2019

National Chairman Richard

Busy bar at Peterborough Milton

18th on the patio

at the table

at the table

attentive at the presentation

Boyd and Angelo

Chairman Nearest the Pin

Paul Leary nearest the pin

Greensomes Winners Dave Bickenll and Charlie Joseph

3rd place Laurent Perrier Greensomes

1st Steward Mike Trippett

Coronation Cup Winners John Billings and Geof Dyson

3rd place Coronation Cup Chas & Dave


Stowmarket boys pick up at Peterborough

Thanks from Chairman



National Chairman's Day

Peterborough Milton Golf Club

9th July 2019

2s Competition


2s Competition





Ben Baker

Dave Guest







Pete Francis

Kevin Fletcher







Mike Triplett







Nearest to the Pins




Hole No 2

Dave Guest


PM Round

Hole No 9

Paul Leary


PM Round

Hole No 11

Pete Francis

PM Round

Hole No 16

Dave Bicknell


PM Round

Hole No 13 **

Richard Berry Jr

PM Round

** Nearest to Pin in 3

The Laurent Perrier Trophy      Greensome Medal




Dave Bicknell & Charlie Joseph


34.81 pts


Boyd Weaver & Angelo Rodriguez **


35.12 pts

** Trophy Winners


Mike Triplett & Kevin Black


36.69 pts

The Chairman's Millennium Trophy

   Stewards only Individual Stableford


Mike Triplett





** Trophy Winner
on C/B


Paul Leary






Kingsley Pullen












The Coronation Cup





John Billing & Geoff Dyson



** Trophy Winners


Paul Leary & Dave Guest




Dave Bicknell & Charlie Joseph




National Meeting at Bridgnorth Golf Club

Monday 17th June 2019

Playing for the Lord Rosslyn Trophy + Moet & Chandon Salver

The Golf Club Stewards Association held its third meeting of 2019 on Monday 17th June 2019 kindly hosted at Bridgnorth Golf Club in Shropshire.

Richard Berry Snr, steward at Peterborough Milton Golf Club, had a great day picking up the Lord Rosslyn Trophy while Midland section President Mike Moffitt and Midland Chairman Angelo Rodriguez won the Moet & Chandon Salver.

Considering the large amount of rain we had prior to our visit the course was in excellent condition albeit that only 12 holes were in play but we constructed an 18 hole competition with guidance from the Pro. Handicap Guru, Steve Arnold, was able to magically make the stoke index make sense. The hospitality at the club was much appreciated and we look forward to returning in 2020.

For full results go to the results page


National Golf Club Stewards 2019 AGM

 Olton Golf Club Monday 8th April 2019

The Golf Club Stewards Association held the Annual General Meeting at Olton Golf Club in the West Midlands on Monday 8th April 2019. The central location of Olton Golf Club has been the traditional home of the AGM for many years. The Club provided, yet again, outstanding hospitality and friendliness coupled with a great well-presented golf course that is a challenge for all. On arrival we had coffee and a bacon roll that can only be described as “Half a Pig”. All regions were represented and with 36 members playing and 40 including the Captain from Robin Hood Golf Club for the evening meal it was a solid turnout with a convivial atmosphere.

Unfortunately outgoing National Chairman Phil Beer was unable to attend so Steve Fowler in his first solo outing for an AGM stood in initially as Chairman. The meeting went very smoothly. A new National President was elected following the stepping down of the past President Jason Knapper. Ian Duncan from Stowmarket Golf Club was presented his Chain of Office by Association stalwart and Life Member, Mike Moffitt. Ian thanked the membership for their support and stated that his mission while holding this office is to promote the Association and build the membership.

The President then presented incoming National Chairman, Richard Berry Jnr with his chain of office and Richard then took the reins from Steve Fowler to chair the rest of the meeting. Within the elections of officers Steve Arnold National Vice Chairman, Steve Fowler National Secretary, Richard Berry Snr Treasurer and the Appointement of Steve Brothwell as a Trustee all the business was wrapped up in a reasonable time.

Drinks at the bar were on the New President and New Chairman.

The evening meal was a tasty piece of brisket and various vegitables followed by bread and butter pudding, coffee and mints.
Following the meal Richard Berry Jnr thanked the management and staff of Olton for their hospitality and then the prize presentations took place.

New President Ian was called upon to present the 2018 order of merit trophies to Richard who then presented Ian with the First prize for the Stewards and the two’s.

David Guest picked up the Jack Wiseman trophy for the best placed working Steward present by the Wiseman family

See full results below

Order of Merit 2018:

Winner: Richard Berry Jr:

Nearest Pin:
13th Hole: C O’Doyle
8th Hole: No Winner

Ian Duncan (5th Hole)

1st – Mark Langman:   40Pts

Jack Wiseman Trophy (for Stewards):
1st –   Ian Duncan:       37pts
2nd – Bob Purcell:        33pts
3rd – Boyd Weaver:     32pts

Winner: (Best placed Steward)
David Guest: 31pts (on c/b)

Before the AGM

Chairman Richard

National President 2019 Ian Duncan

National Vice Chairman Steve Arnold and National Chairman Richard Berry Jnr

President Ian & Chairman Richard

Winner New President Ian

2nd place Bob Purcell

3rd Place Boyd Weaver

Richard Wins Order of Merit

Best Guest 40 point playing off 7

Winner of the Jack Wisemen trophy best placed working steward David Guest with the Wiseman family and the new Chairman

The Presidents Table

Twos winner Ian Duncan

National Golf Club Stewards 2018 AGM

The Golf Club Steward Association held their Annual General Meeting at Olton Golf Club in Solihull Birmingham on Monday 9th April 2018.

Prior to the AGM the Stewards and their guests enjoyed 18 holes around the pretty West Midlands course playing for the Jack Wiseman trophy. Always a challenge the weather was kind with just the odd shower. Following such a wet winter the course was in great condition which was a tribute to the Greens staff. As always at this event the scoring was very competitive with Jim Dobbin second on count back just pipping David Laidler both with 36 points. The winner with an excellent 37 points, playing off a handicap of 1, was Richard Pearson who has now won the prized Jack Wiseman Trophy three times.

Following the Golf the AGM commenced at 4.30 with outgoing National Chairman Tim Pearson, thanking the membership for their support in his successful and enjoyable year. He passed the chain of office to East Anglian section steward Phil Beer from Thetford Golf Club in Norfolk. Treasurer Richard Berry Senior presented the accounts which were unanimously approved. All the resolutions were passed. Mike Wiseman and Roger Parker stepped down as Trustees and were replaced by Mike Moffit and Ken Turney.

Finally Ken Brothwell stepped down after 9 years as National Secretary. All members were in agreement as to what a superb job Ken has done over these years and the amount of hard work and organisation that it takes to organise Stewards events and maintain order. Ken wouldn’t step down until a replacement was found and the very able and experienced Steve Fowler, a former secretary manager at Olton Golf Club, was asked to take over and voted in unanimously by the membership. With a great Thanks to Ken and a good luck to Steve the AGM closed at 5.00.

At the following evening meal we were treated to typical Olton hospitality with a delicious meal followed by a thank you to Olton Golf Club from Chairman Phil and a response from the Olton Captain Nic Heath.

At the prize presentation Steve Brothwell received the 2017 order of merit trophy before the presentation of the competition prizes for the day.



There were no Two’s so this prize rolls over to the next event at Drayton Park Golf Club on Monday 21st May 2018

Nearest the Pin on the 8 - Richard Pearson
Nearest the Pin on the 15th - David Guest

Best Guest - Mr Page

Jack Wiseman Trophy
1st Richard Pearson 37 points
2nd Jim Dobbin 36 points on count back
3rd David Laidlaw 36 points

The 2017 Order of Merit 
Steve Brothwell

The next National Meeting is a Drayton Park Golf Club, Tamworth Monday 21st may 2018 playing for The Bells Trophy and the Inter Section Cup

Before the AGM

Address from 2017 Chairman Tim Pearson

Busy Bar at Olton

Cheers Ken Brothwell

Handover Stephen Fowler takes over from Ken Brothwell

National Chairman Tim hands over to Phil

Chain of Office

Stewards Winner Richard Pearson recieves the Jack Wiseman Trophy

Winner 2017 Order of merit Steve Brothwell

30 years at Maxstoke Park for Sheila

Long serving GCSA Midland section member and friend Sheila Cardwell racked up 30 years as Steward at Maxstoke Park Golf Club on the 31st January 2018

Sheila is pictured above second from the right with some of her long standing team members, some of which have worked at Maxstoke for over 20 years and was joined by friends to celebrate at the club on Wednesday

After starting the position in 1988 Sheila took up playing golf, now playing to a handicap of 9

One of the Maxstoke members said, “What a fantastic achievement, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate your relentless positivity, good cheer and incredible service to the club”

General Manager, Andrew Gibbins said,

“I took over as General Manager in October last year, so I have some way to go to catch up Sheila service. It has been obvious from day 1 that Sheila makes Maxstoke Park a warm and welcoming environment for members and visitors”.

And from... All of us

“The Golf Club Stewards Association congratulates Sheila on her superb achievement, well done and here’s to the next 30 years”!