Rishi Sunak finally unveiled a multi-billion-pound coronavirus bailout for millions of stricken self-employed workers tonight – but left hundreds of thousands just above a ‘cliff edge’ cut-off wondering how they will make ends meet.
Ken Price, 50, who works as a roofer across London and the southeast, said he was concerned people were being made to wait until June for the rescue payment,
‘Three months will be hard enough for people who’ve got money behind them,’ he told the MailOnline.
In this image made available by British government because no media allowed into 10 Downing Street because of the coronavirus pandemic, showing Chancellor of the Exchequer Rishi Sunak holding a digital press conference about the COVID-19 coronavirus, in 10 Downing Street, London today
‘People who are living week to week are going to be in trouble.
‘How many people do you know that can sit at home for two and a half months and not pay their bills?’
He added that financial survival during lockdown will depend on ‘the goodwill of creditors’.
‘It’s a wait and see job,’ he said. ‘Obviously we’re in uncharted territory, but it looks like it’s going to be a matter of choosing between food and bills.’
‘Come April, those bills just won’t be paid.’
Driving instructor Rob Cooling echoed Price’s concerns, saying that many self-employed people will struggle if they have to wait until June for their money.
Pictured: Rob Cooling, 40, from Nottingham, who runs Apple Driving School, providing lessons to pupils with special needs. ‘I think a lot of driving instructors will feel that they could have ridden it out for a month if they were going to get money in April, but if it doesn’t surface until the end of June many will struggle,’ he said
His firm, Apple Driving School, provides lessons to pupils with special needs.
Mr Cooling, 40, from Nottingham, normally earns around £20,000 a year after tax.
But on Monday he was forced to postpone all of his lessons by at least a month after the Prime Minister announced a lockdown.
Mr Cooling, who has run the school for 15 years, said: ‘I love my job and it was very sad to have to cancel.
‘I think a lot of driving instructors will feel that they could have ridden it out for a month if they were going to get money in April, but if it doesn’t surface until the end of June many will struggle.’
Joe Nutkins earns £13,500 a year through her dog training business. And she has been offered loans from old clients who want to help her during the outbreak.
Joe Nutkins (pictured) earns £13,500 a year through her dog training business. And she has been offered loans from old clients who want to help her during the outbreak
Her company, Dog Training for Essex and Suffolk, is twelve years old and has an annual turnover of around £28,000.
But the 40-year-old now fears that if the money does not come soon enough she will not be able to pay the £700-a-month rent for her businesses.
Joe, who lives with husband Jon, 40, a police community support officer, charges dog owners £140 to attend an 11-week puppy course.
Many pay a £45 deposit and then the full balance later. But since the outbreak began older owners and others that live with vulnerable people have dropped out.
Her income this week was just £200. Every month, she has to earn at least £1,200 a month to pay her £700 rent along with bills, insurance premiums and repayments on a loan she took out for refurbishments.
Joe said: ‘When I found out that I wouldn’t be able to have classes in person, my anxiety levels went sky high.
‘I will need to see if I’m eligible and if this money doesn’t come in until June I may still need to apply for a business interruption loan.’
Hannah Murphy is not sure if she will qualify for government help.
The mother of three runs Globe Fit, which provides dance and fitness classes to schools.
Her income after tax is more than £50,000, but this includes dividends from her husband’s company.
Hannah Murphy (pictured) is not sure if she will qualify for government help. The mother of three runs Globe Fit, which provides dance and fitness classes to schools
She says she will need to check her accounts to make sure these will not push her over the threshold where the majority of her income does not come from self-employment.
Mrs Murphy usually runs workshops in schools across the country, but these haven’t been able to take place since the schools were closed on Friday.
Customers can pay £5 to take part in one of her online classes, but with celebrities like Joe Wicks offering workouts for free, she says she is only making ‘pocket money’ at the moment.
Mrs Murphy, who lives in Fareham, Hampshire, with husband Tom, 36, a project manager, started Globe Fit seven years ago and works with around 40 freelance instructors, who have been frantically waiting to find out what the Government will do to help them.
Mrs Murphy, 35, said: ‘I’m obviously happy to get anything, it is just quite confusing and I think I will need to sit down and work out where I am.’
Ruth Mary Chipperfield, 30, runs Ruth Mary Jewellery, an online jewellery shop from Birmingham, but is concerned that reinvesting her profits in gold since opening the business three years ago means that she isn’t entitled to claim on Sunak’s scheme.
Ruth Mary Chipperfield (pictured), 30, runs Ruth Mary Jewellery, an online jewellery shop in Birmingham, but is concerned that reinvesting her profits in gold since opening the business three years ago means that she isn’t entitled to claim on Sunak’s scheme
‘I have zero profit as far as the tax returns are concerned. But my overheads still continue,’ she told the MailOnline.
She added that £20,000 planned work has ‘dried up’ since the coronavirus began to rip through the country.
‘They may still go ahead after all this but the problem is that my clients’ own finances which are drying up too and people are being super cautious.’
The 30-year-old said that reinvestments in costly gold means that she is still ‘forking out quite a bit.’
‘As it’s based on profit and not turnover, I won’t be entitled to anything.’
Matt Rann, 27, and his wife Annalise, 25, of Portsmouth, who produce personalised photo charms through their business Annalise Jewellery, told the MailOnline that there status as a limited company, and their role as directors, means they will fall through the gaps of the rescue scheme.
Matt Rann, 27, and his wife Annalise, 25, of Portsmouth, (pictured in a family photo) who produce personalised photo charms through their business Annalise Jewellery, told the MailOnline that there status as a limited company, and their role as directors, means they will fall through the gaps of the rescue scheme
He said: ‘Sales have dropped for us by about 75-80 per cent. Everything we do is generally bought for birthdays and gifts. It’s one of the first things that people knock off if they don’t have any money. Jewellery is luxury not a necessity.
‘On paper we are employed by our own limited company and paid through a PAYE. As directors we pay ourselves the minimum salary and the rest is dividends.
‘We’re told we can’t furlough ourselves as we are directors, and we can’t claim under self-employed as we’re not classified as such.
‘I think that the government have done a good job and done as much as they can, but it’s almost like they have rushed a little bit and haven’t worked out the terms and conditions for it and leave a lot of questions open.
‘I think it leaves quite a big gap and a lot of people in the same situation as us. We’re directors, but not considered self-employed.’
Jess Salamanca, pictured, who started Banana Scoop in June, said that she is unable to claim under Rishi Sunak’s new scheme because she has only been operating for 10 months
Some who were poised to start their business have been derailed by the coronavirus outbreak.
Jess Salamanca, founder of Banana Scoop, a dairy-free and vegan ice cream business back in June.
She said that she is unable to claim on Sunak’s scheme as she has only been operating for 10 months.
‘The problem is they are forgetting about certain people and understand that it’s incredibly complex,’ she said.
‘Those that have been doing their own business for a couple of months will miss the boat on this one.’