COVID-19 Update: 21st April

In today's COVID-19 update from Cardiff Council:nearly £50 million of grant aid delivered to local businesses in Cardiff; new ‘Rescue Hotel' charity established to support Cardiff Dogs Home; and in numbers, Cardiff Council responding to the COVID-19 crisis.


Nearly £50 million of grant aid delivered to local businesses in Cardiff

Nearly £50m has now been distributed to Cardiff businesses in grant aid by Cardiff Council as part of the on-going COVID-19 rescue package.

Since the £1.4bn financial rescue package was announced by Welsh Government, officers from the Economic Development department have contacted 7,000 businesses to give information on the financial aid, as well as assist them with any enquiries.

3,668 businesses have now received financial support through these schemes and the council is continuing to progress the remaining applications as quickly as possible.

Cardiff Council's Cabinet Member for Finance, Modernisation and Performance, Cllr Chris Weaver, said: "Firstly I would like thank our staff in the finance department for their continual efforts in releasing these vital funds to businesses that qualify for the schemes. We've had some great feedback from business on the way we are managing the scheme, but I want to reassure any business that has applied for these schemes and hasn't yet heard back, that we are progressing applications as quickly as possible.

"Straightforward applications, which do not require further information or clarification are being processed and paid in two to three days. However, there are other claims which we may have queries on which will take much longer. It's vitally important the system isn't abused, so necessary checks have to be made to ensure any fraudulent claims are captured.

"Last week more than 300 of these queries were resolved, but they often aren't straightforward. Right now we are working our way through a number of applications with queries on them. If businesses are concerned and need to contact us they should email"

The grant schemes available as part of the financial support package include:


  • All retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value of £500,000 or less will receive 100% non-domestic rates relief for 2020-21. This will be administered automatically through the Council's Rate Scheme so these businesses do not need to contact the Council
  • All businesses, which are currently eligible for Small Business Rates relief, that is those with a rateable value up to £12,000, will receive a grant of £10,000. If you believe you are an eligible business click here  for the application form and follow the processes outlined
  • Retail, leisure and hospitality businesses with a rateable value between £12,001 and £50,000 will receive a grant of £25,000. If you believe you are an eligible business click here  for the application form and follow the processes outlined.
  • A £400m ‘emergency pot' has also been announced, which allows some businesses that have been effected by the COVID-19 Crisis to access emergency funds based on the number of people that they employ. A grant of £10,000 is available for businesses that employ up to 9 people and grants up to £100,000 are available for companies that employ between 10 and 249 people. To see if you are eligible click here


Fred Wyatt, Managing Director for MeanWhile Creative which provides affordable office, desk and studio space in Cardiff has commended the council for their speed and professionalism during these very challenging times.

Mr Wyatt said: "These grants will be a lifeline to many and I am delighted to report that most of our tenants have already received their grants. The portal to apply, we believe, was one of the first that went live in the UK and some of our tenants received payment within 3 or 4 days of applying which was amazing.

"I think the speed to turn this around was a great display of action and integrity which really sends the right message to the often forgotten small business, especially in times like these."

Leshia Hawkins, Chief Executive of Cricket Wales has also praised the Council for the speed in its response and said: "I would like to thank the council on behalf of all the clubs and for their speed and assistance with this financial aid. We have provided advice on the eligibility criteria for this financial assistance and will continue to assist the clubs with their applications."


New ‘Rescue Hotel' charity established to support Cardiff Dogs Home

A new charity has been established to fundraise and provide additional support for the dogs being looked after at Cardiff Dogs Home and promote responsible dog ownership and humane behaviour towards dogs.

The newly registered charity, officially known as ‘Cardiff Dogs Home, The Rescue Hotel' came into being after a group of volunteer dog walkers at Cardiff Dogs Home got together to organise some small fundraising events - the success of these events sparked the idea of forming a charity to help the city's dogs.

Cabinet Member for Environment, Cllr Michael Michael, said: "The team at Cardiff Dogs Home do a fantastic job of looking after the dogs in their care, but the establishment of The Rescue Hotel, and the dedication and enthusiasm of the trustees, is really good news for Cardiff's dogs and will help us continue to go far beyond what is legally required of the service.

"Sadly, many of the dogs we look after come to us in very poor health and have serious medical conditions that require what can be very expensive treatment. We do our best to make sure as many animals as possible receive the medical care they need, but the additional fundraising power that the Rescue Hotel bring will mean even more dogs getting even better care."

The charity already has a number of successes under its belt - the initial fundraising events paid for a dog called Bruno, who has now been adopted into a fantastic forever home, to have an expensive operation on his ears.

Toria Acreman, one of the charity trustees, said: "It can be very difficult for the home to find new owners that will take on a dog knowing they need an expensive operation.We are all really passionate about the work carried out at the Dogs Home and this is our way of helping out."

The charity has also recently helped the city's homeless community deal with the impact of COVID-19. With most of the dogs normally housed at Cardiff Dogs Home being looked after by temporary foster carers during the outbreak, the home had a surplus of donated pet food. The Rescue Hotel team delivered more than £200 of dog food to the city's Huggard Centre to help feed dogs whose owners are homeless.

Helping to find new owners for the dogs at the home is something the charity are already proving to be incredibly successful at. Alex Milakovic, who has volunteered at the Dogs Home for the last five years runs the charity's social media accounts, which share pictures of all the dogs available for rehoming.

Alex said, "We have nearly 10,000 followers and are continuing to grow. The amount of positive support we have had from the public is amazing. So from someone not really keen on social media, I think we have done pretty well! I wanted to do something positive with my posts, and show people that social media can be used in a good way. This is where the concept of writing, as if the dog was talking came into place. This way you can really get across to the readers the character behind the dog, it shows them in a different light and people can really get to know the true character of the dog.

Mathew Acreman, one of the charity trustees, said:"After months of hard work and planning by the whole team, we're delighted to finally get charity status and are super excited to see what the future holds for The Rescue Hotel. With the support of the community, we'll continue to work closely with the brilliant staff and amazing dogs at Cardiff Dogs Home."

To make a donation to Cardiff Dogs Home, The Rescue Hotel, visit:

Follow them on social media @therescuehotelcdh (Instagram and Facebook) or @therescuehotel (Twitter)

Registered charity number: 1189079


In numbers: Cardiff Council responding to the COVID-19 crisis