Member News & Events

Income Tax Deferral – from Taylorcocks

If you are due to make a payment on account of Income Tax on 31st July 2020 then you have the option to defer the payment until 31st January 2021.

You can defer the payment due on 31st July if you complete a tax return and you are struggling to make the payment due to the impact of the COVID-19 crisis. This is an automatic deferral, so does not need to be applied for, but you can still make the payment by 31st July if you are able to do so.

The income tax will be payable by 31st January 2021 and there will be no interest or penalties for deferring the payment, provided it is paid by 31st January 2021.It is worth remembering that on 31st January 2021 you will be paying, in addition to any deferred Income Tax, the balancing payment in relation to 2019/20 and the first payment on account for 2020/21. So if you do defer the July payment, then you could be paying a whole years tax liability at the same time.

If you are struggling to pay taxes generally then it is possible to agree on an instalment plan with HMRC to spread the payments, but there will be an interest charge for late payments.If you require any support on this, please contact your TC adviser today on 0330 088 7111.

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Queen sends personal message of support to UK businesses

By Press Association 2020

The Queen has spoken of her “great pride” in the contribution the British Chambers of Commerce (BCC) and its members are making to “champion trade and rebuild communities”.

The head of state’s personal message of support for UK businesses was sent to the BCC in the week many non-essential shops reopened as the coronavirus lockdown restrictions were eased.

Baroness Ruby McGregor-Smith, BCC’s president, welcomed the Queen’s message and said it would be a “huge morale boost” to business communities during the pandemic.

The Queen said in her message: “As many organisations around the country are reopening, I send my warmest best wishes and support to business communities throughout the United Kingdom, Commonwealth and across the world.

“At a time of great difficulty for many, it is heart-warming to see the civic response and generosity of so many businesses, small and large, to the challenges posed, whether supporting the health sector or vulnerable communities.

“As patron of the British Chambers of Commerce, it gives me great pride to see the contribution you and your members are making to help firms, champion trade and rebuild communities.

“I wish all businesses every success in their endeavours in the weeks and months ahead.”

Businesses have faced unprecedented financial difficulties during the Covid-19 outbreak, with many having to close their premises or seen customers and clients disappear during the lockdown.

With restrictions beginning to ease many are hoping trade will return but issues are likely to remain for the coming months.

Baroness McGregor-Smith said in response to the Queen’s words: “The Queen’s personal message of support will be a huge morale boost to our business communities at this complex and sensitive time.

“We are grateful that Her Majesty has recognised the crucial role Chambers of Commerce play supporting businesses and communities through the pandemic, and as we restart, rebuild and renew the economy.”

To read the entire article go to The Bournemouth Echo.

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Enhancements to Yellow Buses timetables as lockdown ends

Yellow Buses will be enhancing timetables across the network week commencing Monday 15th June following a loosening of the lockdown.

With some schools, shops and work places reopening, it is anticipated that more passengers will be using the services.

Yellows’ cleaning regime continues at intensified levels with all poles, hand rails, seats and other key areas of its vehicles disinfected regularly.

On board, the vehicles social distancing measures continue to be in place where some seats have been taken out of action to create space.

Details of the revised timetable are available on the Yellow Buses’ website as well as on its app and on most bus stops.

David Squire, managing director, said: “We have continued to provide a safe, reliable service for key workers throughout the lockdown period, and I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our staff for keeping the wheels turning!’’

‘’We have space on board our vehicles for people to travel, the enhanced timetables with social distancing and intensive cleaning regimes mean that we continue to offer safe travel across the conurbation.’’

‘’As more shops and work places reopen we are ensuring that people can travel’’

‘’We would ask customers to remember to socially distance whilst waiting for the bus, whilst boarding and whilst on board. If possible, we would like customers to pay with the app or contactless, and use a face covering whilst on board.’’

‘’We monitor loadings on our services on a daily basis, and where capacity becomes an issue we will employ bigger vehicles or additional journeys’’

‘’We want Yellow Buses to continue to be part of the transport solution across the conurbation’’ 

With enhanced timetables across the network, Yellow Buses continue to offer journey solutions to the following destinations.

  • Buses between Bournemouth, Boscombe and Christchurch every 5 minutes
  • Buses between Bournemouth and Charminster every 7 minutes
  • Buses to Royal Bournemouth Hospital on routes 2 and 3 every 15 minutes
  • Links between Wimborne, Merley, Bearwood, Kinson, Castlepoint and Royal Bournemouth Hospital
  • Links between Christchurch, Christchurch Hospital, Royal Bournemouth Hospital and Castlepoint.

Yellow Buses continue to serve the Business Park at the Airport and will be running daily services between Alum Chine, Bournemouth Town Centre and Boscombe Pier.

Route 1a between Bournemouth, Boscombe, Christchurch, Somerford, Highcliffe and New Milton will be reinstated to run direct every hour Monday to Saturday.

Customers are also advised that as both Morebus and Yellow Buses have now increased frequencies and restored links, the acceptance of one anothers tickets will also cease from Sunday 14 June.

More information can be found on the Yellow Buses website

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Changes to Furlough Scheme & SEISS – Action Required

The Chancellor today announced the changes to the Government’s furlough scheme.  All furloughed employees will continue to receive a minimum of 80% pay (up to a max of £2500). 

The changes are staged for August, September and October as follows:

MonthGovernment ContributionEmployers Contribution
80% (max £2500 pm) 
+ NI + Pens
80% (max £2500 pm) 
+ NI + Pen
80% (max £2500 pm)
NI + Pens
70% (max £2190 pm)
10% + NI + Pens
October60% (max £1875 pm)20% + NI + Pens

A new flexible furlough scheme has also been introduced and will be effective from 1st July.  Employers could opt to return employees on a part-time basis and pay them for the hours worked, and then furlough them for the remainder of their working week and the rate of contribution for this is as above.

The furlough scheme will be closed to new entrants on 30th June so, in order to be eligible and have a minimum of 3 weeks on furlough, employees will need to be furloughed by 10th June at the latest. 

To meet these deadlines you now have just over one week to review and implement your furlough strategy. Part-time furlough will work for many employers, however, there will, unfortunately, be some that will need to consider the redundancy option.

Next steps for employers:

  • Review HR strategy in the next week in line with the latest guidance and our HR team can talk you through your options and advise on the best solution for you;
  • Furlough any employees by 10th June who you wish to continue on the new flexible furlough scheme as anyone furloughed after this date will not be eligible;
  • Consider any other options including phased returns to work, reduction in working hours, linking staff contracts to performance of business, short-time working or redundancies.  Do not leave these conversations until later this year as staff will be less responsive.  Discuss with our HR team how to have these conversations now.  

Self Employed Income Support Scheme (SEISS)
There were also changes to the SEISS announced.  Eligible individuals can claim a 2nd final grant in August worth 70% of their average monthly trading.  The grant will cover 3 months’ profit capped at £6570.

For more information, contact TC Group on

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Furlough Scheme Update & Actions from TC Group

The Chancellor this afternoon announced changes to the Government’s furlough scheme, extending it in its current form until the end of July, with additional changes being made for August to October. As with previous announcements, today’s was lacking in solid details, and more information will follow in due course.

However, at this stage, the immediate action you as a business owner need to take is to send a letter to your furloughed staff extending their furlough leave until 31st July.  Our TC HR department can provide you with this extension letter if you have signed up for our COVID-19 HR contract.In addition to the extension of the scheme in its current form, the Chancellor has made some further announcements that will come into effect from 1st August, all of which will require further clarification before you take any action. These are: 

  • Furlough Scheme extended from the end of July until the end of October;
  • Employer contributions – The Government have confirmed that the payment to employees will continue at 80% of normal salary level but have said they will ask businesses to share the cost of this, so there are some question marks over whether business owners will be required to contribute and the level of the contribution;
  • Part-Time Furloughed Employees – This will be employees returning from furlough and working reduced hours and remaining furloughed for the remainder of the week – It is unlikely that the Government will pay the furloughed salary at the current 80% rate and so employer contributions may be required. 

Next steps:

  • Detailed guidance will be released by the end of May and we will send you a summary as soon as we have reviewed it;
  • You will then have 2 full months to review and implement your furlough strategy in line with the latest guidance and our HR team can talk you through your options and advise on the best solution for you;
  • There will be a number of options available to you that will need careful consideration including phased returns to work, reduction in working hours, short-time working, part-time furloughing or even possible redundancies.   

As previously mentioned, the furlough scheme has already changed multiple times and that will continue to happen as the Government has to adapt to the economic needs of the country. The furlough scheme is one of the UK’s main fiscal responses to COVID-19 and will become increasingly complex with each iteration particularly when combined with part-time workers and other return to work obligations that will soon be placed upon business owners. If you haven’t already we would encourage you to speak to our Head of HR Wendy McGarvey whose team of HR experts can support you with a discounted support package that will cover everything you need during this period including return-to-work advice and staff template letters that comply with the latest guidance. 

Honorary Accountants to the Chamber.

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Coach tourism needs £65m a month as it faces fight for its future with 18 month winter warns CPT

It is no understatement to say that Britain’s coach industry is in crisis, with company failures now into double figures nationally, including Seaview Coaches of Poole locally. Nationally, David Urquhart Travel, Scotland’s biggest coachholiday operator (who run tours to Bournemouth), failed last night and Shearings, the UK’s biggest coach tour operators has been on the brink of administration for the last week.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT) is calling on the Government to provide a support package worth £65m each month for the coach tourism industry. 

CPT has warned that the industry is in a fight for its future because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Despite the spring and summer being the peak period only 2% of coaches that are normally involved in a range of tourist trips are currently being used and bookings are not expected to return to pre pandemic levels until summer 2021.

Despite the mothballing of coaches and the majority of staff on furlough operators are still facing costs on average of £1900 per day. These costs have been compounded by unprecedented cancellations and the failure of government to classify coach tourism as a leisure business making operators ineligible for a Covid-19 business rates holiday and grant.

Commenting CPT Chief Executive Graham Vidler said:

“Coach tourism is in a fight for its future with the complete collapse of bookings for the summer period and the expected quieter winter period to come.

“The industry directly employs 42,000 people with many more jobs dependent on the sector to get people to attractions and destinations. Without support these jobs are under threat as operators have to lay off staff and attractions see reduced footfall as customers, many of whom rely on coach to travel, face fewer choices and difficulties in reaching destinations.

“The collapse of coach tourism will mean a significant increase in the carbon footprint of tourism as people revert to carbon heavy car journeys to visit attractions and destinations.”

The three point support package set out by CPT includes:

  1. A cash injection into the industry worth £65m a month to help the industry cover its costs for the rest of 2020. The rate of payments would taper off in line with an expected increase in future bookings.
  2. A flexible job retention scheme to allow staff to remain on furlough until business levels return to normal.
  3. Confirmation that coach tour operators are to be treated as leisure businesses for the purposes of Covid-19 support.

Graham Vidler continued:

“This injection of cash into the industry along with the continuation of the furlough scheme is vital. Without it many operators will go under as a result of the 18 month winter they are facing with little to no bookings.

“The failure to classify the sector as leisure is deeply disappointing and shows a worrying lack of understanding from government about its role, this must be reviewed immediately.” 

Contact your local MP to voice your concerns and support passenger transport.

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Free Return To Work Consultations

With the announcement, yesterday that the lockdown may be easing we thought it would be useful to give you a few points to consider for a return or staged return to the workplace and offer you a free ‘Back To Work Consultation’ by the HR team at TC Group.

The key points you should be considering as you plan your return to the workplace are:

  • Workplace assessment – can you maintain a 2m physical distance between employees? 
  • Limit any hot desk arrangements and sharing of stationery and equipment; 
  • Look at how you will manage meetings / other interactions ie communal areas; 
  • Consider a deep clean if you have been closed; 
  • Daily sanitisation of phones, computers, desks and door handles with an anti-viral cleaner; 
  • Consider staggering working hours so employees are not all in at the same time; 
  • Ensure there are adequate handwashing facilities and provide hand sanitiser at regular stations; 
  • Decide whether you need to provide additional PPE; 
  • Consider staff concerns re travelling to work on public transport.

You may find you have more requests for flexible working due to employees having children or elderly relatives at home to look after.  Consider these carefully and in line with legislation. 

At this stage, the furlough scheme is currently available until the end of June, although we are aware the Government are being pushed to consider making it more flexible and to also extend it.  As soon as we know more about this we will let you know.

It may be that you need to consider short-time working, layoffs, redundancies or a temporary reduction in hours/salaries for your employees until your business is back up and running fully.  Please remember that all of these are variations to contracts and need to be handled correctly. 

To arrange your full free ‘Back To Work Consultation’ please contact our head of HR Wendy McGarvey or call 0330 088 7111.

Cyber Scam Warning

A few unfortunate clients have contacted us recently to make us aware that they have been victims of cyber scams. As TC clients we wanted to take this opportunity to remind you to be ultra-vigilant at this time to COVID-19-related fraud and cybercrime.

The Government has released guidance on how to protect yourself and your business from attacks, which they refer to as ‘Stop. Challenge. Protect’. 
Full details of the guidance can be found here on the website.

TC Group

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Financial Support Reminders & Couples Inheritance Tax Thresholds

The Government has today launched two much-anticipated schemes directed at small businesses and the self-employed in response to the Coronavirus crisis.

Bounce Back Loans
As of 9 am today, small businesses can gain access to a new fast-track finance option, known as the Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan. Since the launch of the scheme, this morning we have had lots of interaction with the banks on behalf of our clients and the process appears to be working well.We have covered the scheme in detail elsewhere in previous communications, but the key points you should be aware of at this time are;

  • Loans of £2,000 – £50,000 available up to a maximum of a ¼ of a firm’s annual turnover;
  • Applications made online via a seven-question form;
  • 12 months no interest, fees or repayments;
  • Repay over 6 years, 2.5% interest rate, no early penalty;
  • Can’t apply if already under CBILS;
  • No restriction on the total amount of the facility that may consist of refinancing – whereas with CBILS you can only use 20% of the loan to refinance.

 TC Group can work alongside you to collate all the necessary documentation for your self-certification and should you need support to do so is on hand to help submit it for you. 

Self-Employment Income Support Scheme
HMRC has today begun contacting customers who may be eligible for the Government’s Self-Employment Income Support Scheme. Those who are eligible will be able to claim a taxable grant worth 80% of their average trading profits up to a maximum of £7,500 (equivalent to three months’ profits), paid in a single instalment.Although we cannot claim on your behalf, we can assist you in checking whether you are eligible and when you can make a claim via HMRC’s new online tool.In order to make a claim you will require the following information:

  • Self Assessment Unique Taxpayer Reference (UTR) – if you do not have this you can find it here;
  • National Insurance number – if you do not remember it, you can find it here;
  • Government Gateway user ID and password – if you do not have a user ID, you can create one when you check your eligibility online;
  • An account number and sort code for the bank account you want the grant paid into (only provide details where a Bacs payment can be accepted).

 While HMRC will calculate the grant, as your agent TC can check the calculation to see if it is correct. Contact your TC Partner on 0330 088 7111 to discuss further.

Couples Inheritance Tax Thresholds
Just as you would regularly review your financial affairs, it is advisable to regularly give your Will a health check to make sure it still works for you and takes advantage of all available tax allowances. Our private client team has been working closely with our clients and their family members to do just that, and in the last few weeks, we have seen a number of clients with out of date Wills who were missing out on significant inheritance tax savings. We wanted to highlight one of these specific areas.From April 2017 the Government introduced the residence nil rate band with a headline of increasing a couples inheritance tax threshold to £1 million by April 2020. This new relief could save a further £140,000 in inheritance tax per couple if they leave their home to their children or grandchildren. However, the rules around this can be complex and in certain circumstances, the relief can be restricted, so it is important that your Will is reviewed to ensure that your family are able to benefit from the extra tax savings available.If you haven’t updated your Will since 2017, we can review and update your Will where necessary to ensure that you are eligible for this additional tax relief.

Please contact or call our Private Client Team on 0330 088 7111 to arrange your free consultation.

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Chancellor Announces 100% Government Backed Coronavirus Bounce Back Loans

The Chancellor today announced that small businesses will from 9am on Monday 4th May gain access to a new fast-track finance option, which is being referred to as the Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan. The scheme has been designed to ensure that small businesses who need vital cash injections to keep operating can get finance of up to £50,000 in a matter of days. The key details for your information are as follows; 

  • Loans are expected to be turned around within 24 hours;
  • 100% guaranteed by the Government;
  • No forward eligibility checks;
  • Simple 2 page self-certification form to be completed online;
  • £2,000 – £50,000 available up to a maximum of a ¼ of a firm’s annual turnover;
  • No repayments will be due during the first 12 months;
  • The government will work with lenders to agree a low rate of interest for the remaining period of the loan.

Although this scheme is not available to those businesses already claiming under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), it will provide much needed funds to small businesses who have been adversely affected by the crisis.

According to the guidance a CBILS loan application (if less than £50k) can be transferred to this new scheme in order to provide faster cash delivery.

 TC Group can work alongside you to collate all the necessary documentation for your self-certification and should you need support to do so is on hand to help submit it for you. Contact your TC Partner on 0330 088 7111 to discuss further.

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