Doncaster business leaders say Budget 'looks positive' and praise 50 per cent rates reduction for hospitality and leisure sector

Business chiefs in Doncaster have said Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s Budget announcement ‘looks positive’ for firms across the borough.

Wednesday, 3rd November 2021, 10:14 am
Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak holds the budget box ahead of delivering his Autumn Budget and Spending Review to Parliament

Dan Fell, Doncaster Chamber CEO said there was ‘welcome and much needed support’ for the hospitality industry and aviation sector which is ‘vital’ to the borough.

But he added the Budget ‘could have gone further’ on regional economic development’.

The Budget was also praised by Doncaster Conservative MP Nick Fletcher who said the Chancellor’s address was ‘fantastic’ and highlighted levelling up funds for the borough, an increase in the youth services and schools budgets.

Sign up to our daily newsletter

The i newsletter cut through the noise

Dan Fell, Chief Executive of Doncaster Chamber

Main points of the Budget included a reduction in the amount paid back to the government when working more hours on Universal Credit, a 50 per cent reduction in business rates for the hospitality and leisure sector and further funding for vocational training and research and development technology.

But critics of Mr Sunak’s budget said a reduction in alcohol duty on champagne and air passenger duty on domestic flights were out of touch.

Shadow chancellor Rachael Reeves said the Government had taken £6 billion from families in the £20 a week UC cut only to give a third back in the taper reduction.

Labour’s Doncaster Mayor Ros Jones welcomed the announcements on the Levelling Up Fund for the borough in the remediation works of the Waterfront but added that two further schemes were not mentioned.

She said the ‘devil will be in the detail’ further down the line.

Dan Fell, Doncaster Chamber CEO, said: “As an initial response, this is a budget that looks positive for businesses but that – despite the very welcome reference to Doncaster in the Chancellor’s speech and allocation of Levelling Up funds – could have gone further to support regional economic development.

“The eye-catching 50 per cent discount rate announced for businesses within the retail, leisure and hospitality sectors will be a helpful lifeline to many and, pleasingly, shows a Government willing to think outside the box.”

Conservative Don Valley MP Nick Fletcher added: “Since being an MP, I have also lobbied ministers to lower Universal Credit taper relief. So it was excellent to hear the Chancellor champion these policies today, as supporting family hubs and reducing the tapered allowance will help thousands of people across Don Valley.

“I also welcomed the announcement of £560 million for youth services over the next three years, as this will help keep children active and out of trouble.

“Again, youth club provision is something that I have campaigned for locally, and I am confident that the stakeholders I have worked for over the past year and a half will be delighted with the announcement.

“Having been questioned about the Levelling Up Fund over the weekend, I am incredibly pleased to tell my constituents that the Fund will be coming home.”