Thousands of households are yet to apply for two schemes that could help save them money this January.
Funding to support vulnerable people and families this winter
Herefordshire Council has been allocated over £1 million by the government as part of a new Household Support Fund to help vulnerable people and families this winter. At least 50% of this must be used to support households with children. The funding must be spent by 31 March 2022.
If you are a low income household that receives Universal Credit (at a level that is below the threshold for free school meals and/or free prescriptions), you can apply for a one-off payment of £60 to help you with food, energy and other essential costs this winter.
To receive this support you will need to complete a short online application form to verify your identity and provide your bank details for payment. Herefordshire Council urges you to complete the application form as soon as possible to ensure you don’t miss out.
To complete your application, you will need your date of birth, national insurance number and bank account details.
You should only apply once – the council will not process duplicate applications. The deadline for applications is 28 February 2022.
Every household in Herefordshire is now able to apply for a prepaid card loaded with £15 to spend, as part of a major campaign to help the county’s local and independent traders.
Herefordshire Council is sending a prepaid card to every one of the county’s 90,000 households which applies for it, as part of its new Shop Local campaign.
The campaign aims to kickstart the local economy by encouraging residents to spend their money with local producers, retailers and shopkeepers whenever they can.
It is part of the council’s £6million programme of work to help the county’s economic and wellbeing recovery in the wake of the pandemic. Other measures include free weekend bus travel, a range of activities to encourage residents to get active, a Revive and Thrive grants programme to help small and growing businesses and the LoyalFree app to reward local shopping.
Leaflets promoting the Shop Local prepaid card will start dropping through letterboxes in December and the council is urging every household to apply for its card as quickly as possible, with a 31 January 2022 deadline for applications.
Councillor Ellie Chowns, Cabinet member environment and economy said: “Herefordshire’s fabulous local and independent retailers, producers, traders and hospitality sector help make our county the special place we all love, but they‘ve had a particularly tough time during the Covid pandemic. The Shop Local prepaid card will act as a catalyst to help kickstart economic recovery by giving residents an incentive to visit local shops, restaurants and businesses.
“Several studies have shown that money spent at a locally owned business stays in the local economy and continues to strengthen the economic base of that community. We want to encourage everybody to use the card to support locally-based and independent traders, retailers and service providers if possible. By connecting residents with their local shops and traders, we will also help people become more connected to their local community, by meeting new people, discovering new activities, places to visit and groups.”
“The run-up to Christmas will be a key period for Herefordshire’s economy – and local and independent traders in particular. By incentivising residents to Shop Local at such an important time, the council hopes to boost overall spend with the local business community both in the run up to Christmas and beyond.”
Residents are reminded that however they choose to spend the funds on their card they should make sure they stay safe from Covid by wearing a mask and keeping their distance in crowded areas, and washing their hands.
To apply, residents can go online at www.herefordshire.gov.uk/shoplocal and fill in the simple form, or anyone not online can call 01432 260027.
The prepaid card can be handed over the counter to make point of sale purchases, but will only work within Herefordshire. You will not be able to use it in places such as off-licences, betting shops, lottery and casinos. A full list of restrictions will be sent with your card.
Retailers don’t need to sign up or take any additional action – the card can be used in any store that accepts Mastercard payments.
The council has teamed up with Hereford-based allpay to produce the prepaid card – keeping its own spending within the county as part of the campaign.
The aim of the scheme is simple – to get us all back out supporting our local businesses and retailers as they emerge from the limitations of the last 18 months.
By keeping spending local we can help our local communities survive and thrive.
The card must be used in Herefordshire. That way we can all help our great county and its local and independent retailers, producers and traders bounce back from the pandemic and ensure our retail, hospitality, cultural and leisure sectors continue to thrive.
All businesses that accept Mastercard will be able to accept the Shop Local prepaid card.
There is one card per household. Read on to find out how the card works and then apply online below,before 31 January 2022.
About your prepaid card
- You must be 18 or over to apply for this card.
- Please be aware that only one application per individual property is permitted and the card is intended for use by the occupants of that property only. You are only entitled to one card regardless of the number of properties within the County of Herefordshire you may own.
- In the case of a house of multiple occupation there can be more than one application per address. Please note that these applications are more likely to be verified
- Your Shop Local prepaid card will be loaded with £15 and will have a letter attached which will advise you how to activate it and how to use it.
- Please keep your card until the scheme closes on 31 March 2022. Additional money may be available to be loaded onto your card depending on scheme take up
- The prepaid card is not a credit card and will have no loan or credit facility. You will only be able to make payments from the available balance on the card.
- Your card cannot be used to withdraw cash at an ATM.
- There are no fees associated with this card.
- Any unspent funds remaining on the card by 31 March 2022 will be returned to Herefordshire Council.
- Your card has been restricted to only permit purchases at businesses based within the geographical location of Herefordshire. These measures depend on the information we receive from that business. This means there may be occasions where your card does not work, and the attempted transaction is declined. This is because the address of that business (or their acquiring bank) may not be registered in Herefordshire.
- You may be restricted from using your card for some purchases as agreed with Herefordshire Council, which could include restrictions at off-licences, as well as for betting and gambling (including lottery tickets and casinos), dating and escort services, massage parlours, pawn shops and tobacco stores, counselling services, automated fuel pumps, cable, satellite, or other paid TV subscription services and telecommunication services.
- Please note that Herefordshire Council reserves the right to verify any and all applications for the pre-paid card using council held records.
Apply for your household’s prepaid card by 31 January 2022
Apply for your household’s Shop Local prepaid card – CLICK HERE
What happens once I have applied?
When you have completed the application form, your prepaid card will be sent to you in the post. It should arrive within 10 days of your application.
There is only one card per household. If someone from your household has already applied, your application will not be processed.
If your card is lost or stolen
- Report this as soon as possible by calling our payment card partner allpay Ltd on 0330 808 0102.
- Your card will then be immediately blocked, protecting you from unauthorised usage.
Questions about the Shop Local prepaid card
- For any issues with using your Shop Local prepaid card, please contact allpay customer services on 0330 808 0102.
By completing the application, you are confirming that you are eligible for the pre-payment card. If your eligibility circumstances change after making an application or receiving this pre-payment card, you must notify us immediately.
Herefordshire Council will not accept deliberate manipulation or fraud, and any instances where an individual falsifies or dishonestly provides inaccurate information, or submits multiple ineligible applications, will be actively investigated. The council reserves the right to recoup any funds paid in error and reserves the right to cancel any pre-payment cards issued.
The information we collect from you may be shared with fraud prevention agencies who will use it to prevent fraud and money-laundering and to verify your identity. If fraud is detected, you could be refused certain services, finance, or employment. View further details of how your information will be used by us and these fraud prevention agencies, and your data protection rights, on our Fraud prevention privacy notice.
The allpay prepaid card is issued by allpay Ltd pursuant to license by Mastercard International Incorporated. allpay Ltd is a company regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority (FRN 900539) for the issuance of electronic money. Head office and registered address: Fortis et Fides, Whitestone Business Park, Whitestone, Hereford, Herefordshire, HR1 3SE (Company No 02933191). Mastercard is a registered trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated.
Further information – Shop Local – Herefordshire Council