Business Improvement Grant Guidance

The Guidance Notes are here to help you understand the Business Improvement Grant and to outline how you can successfully apply for your grant – up to the value of £1,000.

Funding for the Business Improvement Grant is provided directly from your BID levy contribution.

Grant Availability

Grants for external improvements must be appropriate for Falkirk town centre, and for ease of any Planning Application made to Falkirk Council will need to comply with the Council’s Supplementary Planning Guidance Note on Shop Fronts. This document can be downloaded from Falkirk Council’s  website.

Falkirk Delivers will only provide grants to BID members who have paid their BID levy, or who are up to date with their BID levy monthly instalments.

All applications will be treated on a first come first served basis.

What types of premises are eligible?

The Improvement Grant is available to all BID members who are up to date with their BID levy payments. If you are a new business after then you must have completed your first years BID levy before becoming eligible.  These are issued from the 2nd June each year.  If you are currently ineligible then, you may wish to approach your landlord to ask if they would be willing to contribute to the improvement works.

What will the scheme fund?

The following improvements will be considered for support:

  • External building upgrades
  • Signage
  • Canopies                                                                      
  • New windows/ doors
  • Disabled access                                                           
  • Low energy lighting
  • Energy efficiency                                                           
  • External paintwork
  • Safety and security measures (shuttering / grilles)       
  • Guttering / roof repairs

Ineligible Expenditure

The scheme will not support:

  • Retrospective applications i.e. for work already completed or underway
  • Recoverable VAT

Grant Amounts

All registered BID members are eligible to apply for a grant.  You will pay 50% of the improvement costs with Falkirk Delivers paying the other 50%.  The Falkirk Delivers maximum contribution will be £1,000.

Grant awards exclude VAT.  You are responsible for the VAT element of your invoices.

Improvement CostFalkirk Delivers Contribution Your Contribution
£2000£1000 £1000
Anything over £2000 (a)£1000 (b)a – b

What constitutes a good shop front design?

Principles to create a good shop front design are contained within Falkirk Council’s Guidance note (see point 1 of this document).

If the Building is listed, it is likely a listed building consent would be required prior to any works taking place.

Is guidance available?

The Falkirk Delivers team are always available to assist you at any stage of your Business Improvement Grant.

The Planning Team at Falkirk Council are also available to provide guidance and support.

Will I require planning approval?

Virtually all major works that change the exterior of buildings will require Planning Permission. They may also require Listed Building Consent or Advertisement Consent. A separate planning application and scale drawings prepared by a professional agent will be required to show the extent of all new work. If you are using a professional agent, they will be able to advise you about any statutory consents that are required.

It takes Falkirk Council about two months to decide on a planning application, advertisement consent or other statutory consent. You need to build this into your timetable for carrying out your project.

Falkirk Council’s Planning Team are available on 01324 506070.

What is the process for applications?

How long will it take to make a decision on my application?

We will make a decision on your application within a reasonable timescale of receiving a fully completed application.

If your project requires planning permission and your grant is approved we will write to you making principle offer of funding, we will then issue a formal grant offer letter as soon as planning permission is granted.

Who will decide whether my application is approved?

Applications will be considered by a panel made up of Falkirk Delivers Board members.

What conditions will apply to the grant?

All grant offers will be made in writing.  Full details of the conditions that apply to the grant will be set out in a grant offer letter.

All grants will be conditional on you securing appropriate planning consent (if applicable).  The scheme operates independently of the planning process and any offer of a grant does not imply in any way that planning consent will be granted.

When will the grant be paid?

Grants will be paid on production of invoices from contractors showing a detailed breakdown of costs.  Payments will be made 14 days after all work is completed and your receipts have been verified. If you required planning permission for your works,  this must be granted prior to reimbursement of fundsPayment made will cover the Excluding VAT element of your invoices.

Additional Information:

Falkirk Delivers                                   

Elaine Grant – Manager
01324 611293


Falkirk Council

Stephen McClure -Falkirk Council Planning Officer
01324 504702

Business Improvement Grant Application Form

Applications from September 2020
*Improvement areas: External repairs, Signage, New windows/ doors , Canopies, External paintworks, Safety and security measures, Guttering / roof repairs, Disabled Access, Low Energy Lighting, Energy Efficiency