Coach operators have now been added to the list of businesses who can apply to their local authority for grants of up to £25,000.

CTA Chairman John Wales

John Wales, chair of the Coach Tourism Association, has welcomed the move to give more support to coach operators. 

The discretionary fund is only available to those who have failed to receive funding via the Business Rates Relief Scheme and comes following discussions with The Tourism Alliance. 

Securing the additional funding is also a welcome boost to the Back Britain’s Coaches campaign, which is being run by the Confederation of Passenger Transport, with the aim of securing additional supports for the coach tourism industry.

Coach Tourism Association chair John Wales said: “The Tourism Alliance has been very successful in getting coach companies added to the list of businesses who can apply for funding from the new discretionary fund. The CTA would strongly recommend that any members in this position should apply for a discretionary grant as soon as possible.”

The Digital, Culture Media, and Sport Parliamentary Committee is also asking the Government for answers about support for the tourism industry. Chair, Julian Knight MP, has now written to the Minister for Sport, Tourism and Heritage asking what measures the Government intends to take to help kick-start the tourism industry, how it will promote UK holiday destinations and whether or not it supports the proposal for an extra bank holiday.

The Confederation of Passenger Transport UK estimates that the value of coach tourism is £7.4bn to the tourism economy, with 50% of that being the turnover of coach tour operators, who directly employ some 42,000 people. 

More details of the fund can be found on the Local Government Association website

The CTA has also pointed its members towards the Government’s Coronavirus Bounce Back Loan scheme launched late last month which helps small and medium-sized businesses borrow between £2,000 and up to 25% of their turnover – to a maximum of £50,000. 

The Tourism Alliance is made up of leading trade associations and trade bodies and was established in 2001. It aims to lobby government on the key strategic issues facing the industry.