Dorset Chamber has urged businesses to take full advantage of the government support on offer to survive Covid-19.

It has warned that the financial impact of the pandemic has already become severe with a huge number of enquiries flooding in as the crisis deepens.

The Chamber delivers the Dorset Gateway programme on behalf of the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), which has ramped up resources to increase the support available.

The Chamber is also:

· regularly updating a special coronavirus section on its website

· publishing a digital newsletter with details of the latest help available

· providing support online, including webinars

· giving updates through a daily video message on LinkedIn by chief executive Ian Girling

· signposting other support available through local authorities and organisations

Dorset Chamber chief executive Ian Girling said: “It is evident that the financial impact of the coronavirus pandemic is already severe.

“Businesses must seriously consider taking full advantage of the support available from the government.

“There is no shame in doing this, the support is there for a reason: to help businesses through the worst of this period.

“The Chamber has had huge numbers of enquiries from concerned businesses in Dorset so we know just how much of a need there is.

“Businesses should seize this opportunity for assistance in the best interests of their companies, their people, suppliers and their customers.”

The Chamber is the voice of business in Dorset with more than 700 members representing 37,000 employees and is the county’s leading business support organisation.

It is making the county’s voice heard at the highest level through the British Chambers of Commerce to lobby for the greatest support available.

Ian added: “The Government is trying to set up mammoth schemes largely on a remote basis which makes it incredibly difficult from a logistical perspective.

“We want it move as quickly as possible and we know that there are gaps which need to be addressed. The British Chambers of Commerce is addressing such concerns and is looking after the business community.

“Its director general Dr Adam Marshall and his team are doing a superb job, and I urge all businesses in Dorset to be as responsible as they possibly can be.

“Self-isolation is vital to stop the spread of this infection so that we can all get back to work as soon as possible.”

The Dorset Gateway, funded by the Dorset Local Enterprise Partnership and delivered by

Dorset Chamber, provides an informed and bespoke service, free to any Dorset based businesses.

To request support visit https://www.dorsetchamber.co.uk/business-support/coronavirus-covid-19/ in the first instance.

Watch Ian Girling and Dorset Chamber videos on LinkedIn at https://www.linkedin.com/in/iangirling/ and https://www.linkedin.com/company/dorset-chamber/

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