IT has never been easy for boxing clubs to raise the funds to keep up with their running costs. But now it is so much harder. With the country in lockdown and gyms shut across Britain, there has never been a more trying time for the sport and especially for its amateur clubs.
Following the government’s instructions all gyms across the country have closed for boxing activity. Clubs who are running community initiatives to help during the pandemic can however remain open for that purpose only, but must strictly adhere to Government guidelines on social distancing and hygiene. (Guidance on social distancing for everyone in the UK is available on www.gov.uk.)
“We fully understand the considerable impact this is going to have on clubs up and down the country, especially on top of the cancellation of end-of-season club shows etc,” England Boxing said in a statement. “Please be assured we have already, and will continue to make, representation to government via the Sport England and the Sport and Recreational Alliance about the effect the closures are going to have on our clubs and to seek ways in which this can be addressed.
“Given we have over 950 clubs in membership, there are obviously a lot of variations as to how each operates – from Ltd companies and CASC through to unincorporated associations and sport clubs – but wherever possible we will provide updates on the government announcements and where to find out additional information.
“It’s appreciated that this support will not directly cover many of our clubs, and we will endeavour to provide further updates as they become available, including clarity on whether this applies to registered charities.
“We also reiterate that we are pushing to see what direct support can be made available to clubs from government funding. In the meantime, our club support officers are also available to help in any way they can.”
England Boxing summarise the government support for clubs that are Ltd with regard to rates relief, grants and loans as follows:
- Business rates relief – Will apply to clubs that pays business rates. Local authorities will contact businesses.
- Mortgage holiday – Will apply to clubs that have a mortgage on the building/space. Please contact your mortgage provider.
- Business interruption loan – Clubs needs to apply through their own bank. This is basically a bank loan with the government covering the interest for the first 12 months.
- Small business grant £10k – Available to businesses that currently have small business rates relief. Each local authority will contact businesses shortly regarding how to apply for this.
- Grant funding of £25,000 for retail, hospitality and leisure businesses – This is available for those with property of a rateable value between £15,000 and £51,000. Local authorities will contact eligible businesses.
- VAT payments – Any VAT payment from the three-month period between March 30 2020 to 30 June 2020 will automatically be deferred until the end of the year.
- Income Tax self-assessment payments – the July 2020 payment is now automatically deferred to January 2021.
- HMRC time to pay (falling outside of VAT and Income Tax Self-Assessment) – Clubs can contact HMRC regarding delaying payments on a case by case basis.
- Full refund on Statutory Sick Pay – While this will become available, it has not been finalised by HMRC yet. More details will be updated at the appropriate time.
- 80% salary contribution for furloughed workers – Currently being set-up, with details to follow from HMRC.
More details and updates on the government guidance are available here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/guidance-to-employers-and-businesses-about-covid-19/covid-19-support-for-businesses.
UK Coaching also has advice for self-employed coaches. Their website is https://community.ukcoaching.org/.
England Boxing is launching a campaign to help clubs directly gain support. They will be promoting the campaign through various partners and groups over the coming weeks so that clubs can receive donations directly into their own ‘Just Giving’ or other fundraising pages, to help cover their overheads when gyms are shut and shows are not running.
Clubs should create a donations page on www.justgiving.com or their preferred donation site and create a donations page. Email this link to firstname.lastname@example.org, ideally by 5pm on March 30 so the #KOCOVID19 campaign can start at 10am on March 31.
Businesses and members of the public who read about the campaign can simply go to the England Boxing website where they can search through the clubs who have opted to be involved, and follow a link directly to their ‘Just Giving’ or fundraising page to make a donation.
Regional club support officers will also be available to help clubs set up a fundraising page or assist promoting a club’s campaign.
England Boxing will not take any of the income generated from this campaign. All donations will be going directly to club’s ‘Just Giving’ or other fundraising pages, so England Boxing will have no involvement with any transactions and will not financially benefit from the campaign.
Further details and resources for clubs in this campaign are available on the England Boxing website www.englandboxing.org.