Discretionary Rate Relief Consultation

ABC CrestDiscretionary Rate Relief – Autumn 2017

Ashford Borough Council

Opens: 25 September 2017
Closes: 6th November 2017

The revaluation of business rates by the Valuation Office Agency took effect on 1st April 2017. This has led to some businesses, including some in the Ashford borough, seeing large increases in the rateable value of the premises they occupy.

The Chancellor of the Exchequer has now stated that the government has put in place a £300m fund to enable local authorities to put in place a discretionary rate relief scheme. This is intended to help businesses apply for assistance if they have suffered from the impact of the first revaluation for seven years.

Ashford Borough Council has been allocated a share of the £300m funding pot to cover a four-year period, with £350,000 funding confirmed for year one and £175,000 for year two.

The government has issued guidance for local authorities and the council has put together a proposed scheme to help those business ratepayers who have suffered significant increases following the recalculation of the rateable value of the premise they occupy.

We are now consulting on our proposed scheme and invite you to comment. Please read the information in this summary document and then comment via this consultation portal.

You can respond to this consultation before 11.59pm on Monday 6th November 2017. Once the consultation has closed, an ‘output report’ showing all the responses received will be available on the council’s website from Friday 10th November.

Cabinet will meet on Thursday 9th November 2017 and consider the responses to the consultation. Full council will then consider the cabinet’s recommendations on 14th December 2017 and agree how the scheme will work for the remainder of the 2017-18 and then the 2018-19 financial years.

Consultation Documents

Respond to this Consultation

Consultation Links

Consultation Summary

Name Discretionary Rate Relief – Autumn 2017
Description The council is consulting on its proposed discretionary rate relief scheme, following announcement of a funding allocation from government to help businesses adversely affected by the Valuation Office Agency’s revaluation that came into effect on 1st April 2017.
Dates From 25 Sep 2017 at 00:00 to 6 Nov 2017 at 23:59. The results will be published by 10 Nov 2017.
Status Open

Ashford Borough Council 25 September 2017

ITL Sponsor Bright Sparks Award

Discovery park's Kimberley Anderson with fellow KM Bright Spark supporters

Discovery park’s Kimberley Anderson with fellow KM Bright Spark supporters

South Ashford based medical technology firm, ITL launched The KM Bright Spark Awards 2017 alongside fellow sponsors at Discovery Park, last week.

The community initiative, which aims to promote science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM), is a celebration of bright young minds. Entries are now open for student teams with exciting projects that feature cross-curricular collaborations in STEM subjects.

Integrated Technologies Ltd (ITL) is an awards partner, alongside Pfizer, Benenden Hospital Trust and Prendon Panels. The awards, which are open to primary and secondary school teams of all ages, invite students to showcase their science projects in front of a panel of industry experts; known as ‘the dragons’. 2017 will be the third year that ITL have sponsored the awards.

The annual awards have a Dragon’s Den-style format with students invited on stage to showcase their science projects with the chance to win prizes. The three categories are: innovation, investigation and invention. (more…)

Electronic Prescription Service Companies

image003Residents in Ashford have received personalised invitations from a company specialising in fulfilling prescriptions via the Electronic Prescription Service. The company use Royal Mail to deliver prescriptions.

This company is not linked to any local pharmacy.

Residents receiving this invitation should consider whether

  • they want to give their personal information a to a commercial organisation, with which they have no previous dealings, and
  • have prescriptions sent to the company that may give an indication of their health conditions

Support your local pharmacy

With pressure on NHS services there will be an effort to encourage us to use the most appropriate service. In many cases this may be the local pharmacy but, if trade is taken from them by mail based services, local pharmacies may find it difficult to stay in business.

South Ashford Community Forum encourage you to support your local pharmacy by naming them as your electronic prescription service provider. Most local pharmacies operate a delivery service for those that cannot get to the premises.

Calling Kent Retailers

loveashford_bannerAshford Borough Council is working in conjunction with ibd Business Advice Group LTD to offer local independent businesses across East Kent the chance to take part in a free business mentoring programme.

The mentoring programme will be launched in July and will offer independent retailers a unique chance to enhance and improve their business. Businesses are invited to attend a group workshop before having their own 1 to 1 tailored business session with mentors from ibd Group.

The workshops will cover all aspects of businesses management, from looking at businesses planning to marketing strategies. Mentors will provide specific support for independent retailers by helping them to understand the importance of using the right technology, online content and social media within their business. Retailers will also develop a business model, as well as enhancing their marketing strategy and branding.

More than 30 independent stores across Ashford, Tenterden, Dover, Shepway and Canterbury have already signed up to the free businesses masterclass.

Sally Pepper from ibd Group said:

“We are retail advisers each with over 20 years’ experience. We’ve owned and run our own businesses and have extensive knowledge from working in independents, high street multiples and international giants.“We are passionate about the regeneration of the high street and bring our experience, knowledge and support to independent retailers. We firmly believe they have a big role to play in whatever form our high streets take in the future.”Retailers can register their interest by emailing

– See more at:

Ashford Borough Council 11 July 2016

ITL double success at KEiBA

ITLlogoSouth Ashford business, Integrated Technologies Limited (ITL) have gained the Manufacturing Business of the Year Award and Large Business of the Year at the Kent Excellence in Business Awards (KEiBA). This is the second year running that have achieved double success in the awards.

Kent Excellence in Business Awards, is prestigious and widely recognised as a sign of excellence in the county and beyond. They are staged and produced by Kent County Council and KM Media Group to recognise and reward excellence in businesses.

Careers Fair at Designer Outlet

Ashford Designer OutletPassionate about a career in retail? Join Ashford Designer Outlet on 23rd June from 3pm to 7pm for their retail careers fair in the run up to the busy Summer period. They will be holding an exciting Careers Fair in the food court where you will have the opportunity to meet with a selection of our designer brands.

In addition, there will be a CV/Interview Workshop run in collaboration with the Kent Invicta Chamber of Commerce. This is a fantastic opportunity to develop your skills and give you a competitive edge when applying for jobs. Confirm your place by sending your name, address & contact details to:  (more…)

ITL Finalists in 3 KEiBA Categories

ITLlogoSouth Ashford based, Integrated Technologies Ltd are finalists in three categories in the 2016 Kent Excellence in Business Awards, announced on Wednesday.

Kent Excellence in Business Awards (KEiBA) is an annual awards scheme staged and produced by Kent County Council and KM Media Group to recognise and reward excellence in Kent’s businesses.

The winners in the 15 KEiBA categories – such as Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Employer of the Year and Business Commitment to the Community Award – will be revealed at a ceremony at the Kent Showground in Detling next month. (more…)

Water in your workplace

Water Saving WeekWhy save water at work?

  • Saving water at work can help you save other resources: If you include the products we use our water consumption is 3400 litres a day! If your workplace cuts down on these products not only water will be saved but also money, as most commercial premises are on a water meter. For example, if your workplace uses recycled paper and card products you can not only save water (roughly
    10 litres of water is used for every new sheet of A4) but also trees, energy and money!
  • Saving water at work can save energy: Many companies find that when they save water they can also save money on energy and process costs. For example, by saving water through having less air-con units and using natural ventilation via windows instead, energy bills will also be reduced, saving your business money.


Stories from ITL Apprentices

National Apprenticeships WeekITLlogo

In National Apprenticeship Week 2016 South Ashford based Integrated Technologies Ltd have checked  in with their apprentices to see how they are getting on.

James- Hardware Engineer

“I joined ITL in 2010 as an apprentice and have not looked back since.  The company has put me through various career enhancing courses including NVQ’s, BTECH qualifications and IPC Certification.

“I am studying for a degree in Electrical and Electronic Engineering on a part time basis one day a week at the University of Greenwich.

“I am now nearing the end of my degree with only another year and a half to go. The course has been taught over 5 years instead of the traditional 3 but it has allowed me to work at ITL 4 days a week and study on the others when required. (more…)

ITL recognised for charity support

KM Partnership AwardsSouth Ashford based firm, International Technologies, was one of fifty organisations honoured at the inaugural KM Charity Team Partnership Awards staged last week. The winners received accolades for playing a key role in helping the KM Charity Team deliver its range of services for schools and good causes.

Representatives from businesses that had supported the charity’s work past and present received a KM Charity Team Partnership Award trophy and framed certificate.

The Kent and Medway Charity Team was founded in 2001. At the start the organisation was called the Kent and Medway Walking Bus Group. It changed its name and logo in 2009 to reflect a broader range of services delivered. The charity works alongside the KM Group, Kent’s biggest multi-media publisher, to support the organisation’s charitable work whenever the objectives of the two organisations are shared.