Expanded retail discount 2020/21

Please read our information on how we are supporting residents and businesses, as well as information on affected services.


For 2020/21 retail relief discount was increased to 100% and was extended to include leisure and hospitality sectors

For 2021/22 the Government has announced the following will apply

  • The Expanded Retail Discount (2020/21) will be extended for three months for eligible properties. This will be at 100% relief, uncapped, for the period 1 April 2021 to 30 June 2021.
  • From 1 July 2021 to 31 March 2022, the Expanded Retail Discount will apply at 66% relief for eligible properties in the scheme. There is a cash cap of £2m for businesses that were required to close as at 5 January 2021, and up to £105,000 for business permitted to open at that date.
  • For the Expanded Retail Discount 2021/22, businesses may choose to opt out of support. They do this by providing billing authorities notification of their request to refuse support, per eligible hereditament.

Which properties will benefit from relief?

Properties that will benefit from the relief will be occupied hereditaments that are wholly or mainly being used:

  • as shops, restaurants, cafes, drinking establishments, cinemas and live music venues
  • for assembly and leisure
  • as hotels, guest & boarding premises and self-catering accommodation

More detailed examples include:

Retail properties that are being used for the sale of goods to visiting members of the public:

  • Shops (such as florists, bakers, butchers, grocers, greengrocers, jewellers, stationers, off licences, chemists, newsagents, hardware stores, supermarkets, etc)
  • Charity shops 
  • Opticians
  • Post offices 
  • Furnishing shops/ display rooms (such as: carpet shops, double glazing, garage doors)
  • Car/caravan show rooms
  • Second-hand car lots
  • Markets
  • Petrol stations
  • Garden centres
  • Art galleries (where art is for sale/hire)

Retail properties that are being used for the provision of the following services to visiting members of the public:

  • Hair and beauty services (such as: hairdressers, nail bars, beauty salons, tanning shops, etc)
  • Shoe repairs/key cutting
  • Travel agents
  • Ticket offices e.g. for theatre
  • Dry cleaners
  • Launderettes
  • PC/TV/domestic appliance repair
  • Funeral directors
  • Photo processing
  • Tool hire
  • Car hire
  • Employment agencies
  • Estate agents and letting agents
  • Betting shops

Retail properties that are being used for the sale of food and/or drink to visiting members of the public:

  • Restaurants
  • Takeaways
  • Sandwich shops
  • Coffee shops
  • Pubs
  • Bars

Retail properties which are being used as cinemas

Retail properties that are used as live music venues

Properties that are used for the provision of sport, leisure and facilities to visiting members of the public (including for the viewing of such activities).

  • Sports grounds and clubs
  • Museums and art galleries
  • Nightclubs
  • Sport and leisure facilities
  • Stately homes and historic houses
  • Theatres
  • Tourist attractions
  • Gyms
  • Wellness centres, spas, massage parlours
  • Casinos, gambling clubs and bingo halls  

Properties that are being used for the assembly of visiting members of the public.

  • Public halls
  • Clubhouses, clubs and institutions

Properties where the non-domestic part is being used for the provision of living accommodation as a business:  

  • Hotels, Guest and Boarding House
  • Holiday homes
  • Caravan parks and sites

To qualify for the relief the property should be wholly or mainly being used for the above qualifying purposes.

In a similar way to other reliefs (such as charity relief), this is a test on use rather than occupation. Therefore, properties which are occupied but not wholly or mainly used for the qualifying purpose will not qualify for the relief. 

For the avoidance of doubt, Businesses which have closed temporarily due to the government’s advice on COVID19 should be treated as occupied for the purposes of this relief.

The list set out above is not exhaustive, as it would be impossible to list the many and varied uses that exist within the qualifying purposes. There will also be mixed uses.

The list is intended to be a guide to determine whether particular properties not listed are broadly similar in nature to those above and, if so, to consider them eligible for the relief.

Conversely, properties that are not broadly similar in nature to those listed above should not be eligible for the relief. 

Which properties will not benefit from relief?

The list below sets out the types of uses that the Government does not consider to be an eligible use for the purpose of this relief.

Properties that are being used for the provision of the following services to visiting members of the public;

  • Financial services (such as banks, building societies, cash points, bureaux de change, short-term loan providers)
  • Medical services (such as vets, dentists, doctors, osteopaths, chiropractors)
  • Professional services (such as solicitors, accountants, insurance agents/ financial advisers)
  • Post office sorting offices 
  • Properties that are not reasonably accessible to visiting members of the public

State Aid

Whilst the UK left the EU on 31 January 2020, the Withdrawal Agreement negotiated by the Government and the EU provides that during a transition period State aid rules will continue to apply as now and will be subject to control by the EU Commission as at present.

Splits, mergers, and changes to existing hereditaments

A new hereditament created as a result of a split or merger during the 2020/21 or 2021/22 financial year, or where there is a change of use, will be considered afresh for the retail discount.

As we receive more information we will update this page, so please check this website for further updates.

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