"That was a very good webinar this morning. Alan's knowledge and the general expertise within Hounslow are evidently 'setting the trend' on a very vital part of the UK economy.

You guys rock ! (to use a bit of Canadian vernacular)" - Peter Buckley

"I think you and the Chamber do a wonderful job and I am always keen to participate" -
Jags Sanghera 
Webinars coming up:
Demystifying Digital -
Get Your Business Growing
Wednesday, 10th February 2021 at 10:00am – 11:30am

Led by Hanna Thorpe and Jackie Mulligan this 90 minute workshop will help you come to grips with your new business model for growth and will help you understand how to integrate digital marketing so you see the results you want.

Whether you’re looking to launch for the first time online or simply trying to scale up your digital activity, the world of marketing, websites and all things digital can seem overwhelming. This session will talk you through a simple four-stage process for putting the foundations in place for your digital growth.

Step 1: Research
Step 2: Build your Ecosystem
Step 3: Manage the day to day
Step 4: Measure

This webinar forms part of Hounslow Council’s Covid-19 Business Support Programme.
Local Chambers Networking

Thursday, 4th March 10:00am - 11:30am

Members- £10 per person
Non-Members – £15 per person

A great way to hear what Chambers are doing across a wider local area to support businesses and most importantly a way to grow your network and do more business.
These events are always popular so book early to guarantee your place.

Limited Numbers –  Only 20 places are available to each Chamber to enable us to manage the group effectively on zoom. A Wait list will operate and additional spaces may be released depending on overall capacity.
Hounslow Business Support Grants UPDATED

We are pleased to announce that applications are now open for businesses in Hounslow.
There are a number of grants which businesses may be entitled to apply for, depending on the circumstances and level of restrictions that are applicable to the business. 
The detailed policy for distribution of each grant, the grant values and links to the live application forms can be found below. 

Local Restrictions Support Grant (Closed)
This grant is available to businesses liable for business rates to the London Borough of Hounslow that have been mandated to close by the government during the periods with the relevant grant values for the periods shown on this page.

Additional Restrictions Grant
The grant is intended to support businesses that have seen a significant reduction in income during the period the grant is available. Businesses are required to demonstrate this by providing bank statements covering the period and an equivalent period immediately prior to this or for the same dates for the prior year. This grant is available to businesses not liable for business rates to the London Borough of Hounslow.
The grant is also available to businesses liable for business rates if they are not Hospitality, Leisure, Accommodation business types. This grant is applicable for businesses that have not been mandated to close by the government during a period of restrictions. Hospitality, Leisure, Accommodation business types should claim from the Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open).
Eligible businesses will be entitled to receive grants for the values detailed here.

Local Restrictions Support Grant (Open)
The grant is intended to support hospitality, hotel, bed & breakfast and leisure businesses that have seen a significant reduction in income during the periods the grant is available. Businesses are required to demonstrate this by providing bank statements covering the period and an equivalent period immediately prior to this or for the same dates for the prior year.
This grant is available to hospitality, hotel, bed & breakfast and leisure businesses liable to pay business rates to the London Borough of Hounslow and that have not been mandated to close by the government during the periods shown. They will be entitled to receive grants for the values detailed on this page.

Local Restrictions Support Grant (Sector)
The grant is intended to support businesses liable for business rates that have been required to remain closed since national restrictions were imposed on 23 March 2020. 
This grant is only available to nightclubs, dance halls, discotheques, sexual entertainment venues and hostess bars.
The information below sets out the periods the grant is available with the date ranges and grant values applicable to the periods mentioned on this page.
HMRC to waive SA late filing penalties for one month

On the 25th January, HMRC announced that those who complete their 2019/20 Self-assessment return before the 28th of February will not be fined the usual £100, thereby extending the January 31st deadline. However, any tax owing and not paid to HMRC by the 1st of February will still incur interest at 2.6%. Penalties on tax owing will begin as normal on the 2nd March. What this means is that HMRC's extension of the deadline to February 28th is only relevant to those who owe little or no tax, as the interest of 2.6% will still be charged on taxes from 2019/20, remaining unpaid on the 1st of February.

HMRC’s Chief Executive, Jim Harra
We want to encourage as many people as possible to file their returns on time, so we can calculate their tax bill and help them if they can’t pay it straight away. But we recognize the immense pressure that many people are facing in these unprecedented times and it has become increasingly clear that some people will not be able to file their return by 31 January.
Not charging late filing penalties for late online tax returns submitted in February will give them the breathing space they need to complete and file their returns, without worrying about receiving a penalty.
Time to Pay arrangement
Taxpayers who cannot afford to pay their tax bill on time can apply online to spread their bill over up to 12 months. But they will need to file their 2019 to 2020 tax return before setting up a time to pay arrangement, so HMRC is encouraging everyone to do this as soon as possible. Time to Pay arrangement by calling the Self Assessment Payment Helpline on 0300 200 3822.
Self-Assessment customers warned about scammers posing as HMRC
Many scams target customers to inform them of a fake ‘tax rebate’ or ‘tax refund’ they are due. The imposters use language intended to convince them to hand over personal information, including bank details, in order to claim the ‘refund’. Criminals will use this information to access customers’ bank accounts, trick them into paying fictitious tax bills, or sell on their personal information to other criminals.
HMRC’s Interim Director General for Customer Services, Karl Khan
We know that criminals take advantage of the Self Assessment deadline to panic customers into sharing their personal or financial details and even paying bogus ‘tax due’. If someone calls, emails or texts claiming to be from HMRC, offering financial help or asking for money, it might be a scam. Please take a moment to think before parting with any private information or money.

Customers can report suspicious activity to HMRC at phishing@hmrc.gov.uk or by sending a text to 60599. They can also report phone scams online on GOV.UK.

Our best advice is to get your Self-assessment return completed before 31st January and make a tax payment to avoid any additional costs for taxes owed.
Pay it Forward – the London initiative, created for the future of London businesses!
They are offering 100% free fundraising to help businesses raise vital funds and stay afloat, rebuild and recover from COVID-19 in partnership with the Mayor of London. 
The Mayor’s £1m Back to Business Fund offers up to £5,000 in match funding to small and independent businesses through the Pay It Forward London crowdfunding platform.
You can find more information, crowdfunder projects and more here: https://payitforward.london.gov.uk/
Please note that as per the T&Cs, projects must meet required supporter numbers to be eligible for extra funding. This is to ensure the system is fair to release the funding. When a project reaches 25% they go forward for review. They must meet the required supporter numbers of 50 and meet their target in order to secure extra funding.
Career Camp has been asked by Brent Local Authority, to host a Skills Summit, to support their recovery strategy. The event will take place during National Apprenticeship Week, and is B2B focused, for employers and training providers. 
There will be presentations from TfL, Cisco, Openreach and Cllr Stephens speaking on education and skills
Watermans is holding a talk exploring the part animals play in Hounslow's history. It includes contributions from author of ‘Edgelands’, Paul Farley and Kathryn Rooke, archivist at Gunnersbury Museum. It will also include presentations from researcher Alistair Cartwright and illustrator Amber Cooper-Davies, whose work features in our exhibition Animal Stories which inspired this event. You can see the exhibition online here (it is also installed at Feltham Library, but unfortunately not open to the public due to current restrictions): https://hounslowvisualarts.org.uk/exhibitions/animal-stories

The event is taking place online, Thursday 25 February at 6pm, at a cost of £4 per person. More information and booking is available here: https://www.watermans.org.uk/events/exploring-animal-histories-at-the-edges-of-the-city

There are also a limited number of free tickets available for Hounslow residents, if paying is a barrier to attending. Please email daisy@watermans.org.uk for more information.
KM Door 2 Door, has just re-joined the Chamber.
They are a logistic company providing services such as Fleet management, Commercial and Domestic removals, Waste disposal, Storage & Courier services, and are offering all Chamber members a 10% discount.
Telephone – 07539 958840 / 07807 487655
An exciting new project has been launched to help and support employees in the west London to develop their job-related skills, improve their technical knowledge and build their career prospects.

NLET is proud to offer this new offer for the Hospitality, Retail, Health & Social Care sectors that will enable eligible employees to gain qualifications and knowledge in a flexible and accessible way from basic skills English/Maths to sector based qualifications at Levels 1,2 and 3.

The project is completely FREE to all eligible employees and their employers. Please contact: londonlearning@nletrust.org or 020 8570 7766

Please click here for more details:

Job opportunity from CLS – amended advertisement

CLS is looking for an engineer who is able to set out (TS16 Robotic) kerb lines, drainage, asphalt and ducting. Must be self motivated and adaptable.
Engineer role
  • Setting out experience, in Civils and road construction
  • Use of TS16, or similar, setting out instrument
  • Experience with CAD
  • Experience with digital models, ideally with DTM’s
  • Ideally experience in QA monitoring and check sheet completion etc.
  • Based in Reading, on a daily basis for provisionally approx. 2 years
  • Permission to work in the UK/valid British passport holder
  • Civils and ground work experience is required
  • Based in Reading, on a daily basis for provisionally approx. 2 years
  • Permission to work in the UK/valid British passport holder
Please contact: 

Ferose Gazi, Managing Director - CLS
M: 07554 891257 T: 01753 686998 E: ferose@clsukservices.co.uk
Hounslow Chamber of Commerce is still a key Gateway for Kickstart. The Chancellor has removed the minimum placement criteria for small businesses so that they can apply directly for Kickstart Placements. This is whilst maintaining the Gateways already in place.

When we registered as a Gateway, we made sure the Employers have a choice of organising their own Employability Skills training and retaining the full £1,500 grant or contributing part of it to access extensive wrap around support from a choice of local providers in the borough. The Chamber’s Gateway offer has already secured over 130 placements from just under 50 Employers and will continue to be open to all.

Having worked with DWP on the scheme for the past four months, we are able to support those with only a few placements by taking away much of the administration from them and keeping the process streamlined.  We are also able to respond within 24 hours (usually much less) to any questions raised. Feel free to talk to us!
November issue of Let's Talk Business out now

West London Local Chambers & Hounslow Chamber of Commerce are the primary support, networking, and representation organisation in west London for SMEs.

We support the interests, the commercial aspirations and the investment from businesses in Ealing, Hounslow and Hammersmith & Fulham - the Chamber is the voice for all businesses located in the borough