Tide Charity awards £175,000 to small businesses hit by COVID-19

We’re pleased to announce that Tide Charity has donated £175,000 to small businesses in need. 

The charity launched in November 2020 in partnership with the Daily Mail, Karren Brady and The Federation of Small Businesses. The charity’s mission is to provide financial support to small businesses put at risk by the COVID-19 crisis.

In just a few months, Tide Charity raised over £200,000 for small businesses at risk. This includes generous donations from ClearBank, Amazon UK, GuerillaScope, Hoxton Mix, Ozone, Yapily and Jumio, as well as private donations and contributions from the public.

Applications opened for the first round of grants at the end of November 2020 and Tide Charity has now awarded grants of £1,000 to 175 successful applicants. 

About the awardees

  • Over half (60%) of the awardees applied for financial support from the Government.
    The Government help wasn’t sufficient to keep from falling into financial difficulty. 
  • On average, awardees had been trading for 6.7 years
  • Over half (53%) the grants went to female-run businesses
  • Sectors most in need of help were:
    arts, entertainment, recreation and hospitality 

How 3 awardees are using their grant


Owner Lauren Lepley had to close Aleafia, her fitness and wellbeing studios in Devon, at the beginning of the first lockdown. She switched to offering fitness and yoga classes online but with much of her income coming from the studio’s cafe, treatment rooms and 1:1 sessions, she found her business was struggling.

Lauren will use the £1,000 grant to pay freelance staff who helped her throughout the lockdowns. She will also invest in her online business, developing a wellness on-demand platform and buying equipment.

Whitefield Bowling Club  

Formed in 1882, Whitefield Bowling Club near Manchester has supported the local community for over a century. Many of the Club’s members are vulnerable seniors. Without membership fees and no social events or matches for most of 2020, the Club’s income dried up.

The £1,000 grant has allowed the Club to carry out urgent repairs and make sure the 129 year-old building is still standing when members are able to return.

Nic Holman Photography

Nic has been a successful freelance cameraman since 1999 but his work contracts evaporated overnight in March 2020.  

With the Tide Charity grant, Nic will buy equipment to allow him to work in a socially-distanced manner: a wireless camera transmitter means he can carry out COVID-safe film shoots. He’ll also use the grant to pay for hosting his new website. Nic hopes this will boost his marketing and get him back in business.

Help Tide Charity raise money for more grants

Tide Charity is appealing for donations for a second round of grants to small businesses in need. The charity has already raised over £40,000 for the second round and aims to raise a further £160,000 as quickly as possible. Applications for Tide Charity grants will open when the target of £200,000 has been reached. 

With Lockdown 3 underway, the Federation for Small Businesses has recently warned that at least 250,000 businesses will close this year without financial support (source: FSB). Please share this link on your networks and with your contacts to help Tide Charity raise another £200,000:

Oliver Prill, CEO of Tide and Chair of Tide Charity trustees, said: 

“We’re pleased we could offer grants to so many businesses. It’s been heartbreaking to hear how people’s livelihoods have been destroyed.

“We’re grateful that so many people have donated to support fellow business owners. This crisis is not yet over – I hope the community spirit continues as we raise money to give more grants.”

Mike Cherry, National Chairman of The Federation of Small Businesses (FSB), said: 

“If there’s a positive to take from the dreadful circumstances of COVID-19, it’s the way in which businesses, organisations and individuals have been supporting one another. Tide Charity is an excellent example of this in action. 

“Tide Charity grants will make a real difference to some of the small businesses most in need. Small companies are at the heart of both our economy and our communities. Supporting them through this difficult time is vital so they can provide the jobs, growth and innovation needed for economic recovery.”

Connect with Tide Charity

Sarah Penney

Sarah Penney

PR and Communications Manager

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