A NEW rate relief for smaller high street firms will benefit up to 250 businesses in Ribble Valley Borough, councillors have been told.

The one third discount on the tax they pay to the local authority for two years results from an announcement in Chancellor Philip Hammond Budget last year.

It applies to retail outlets with a rateable value of £51,000 or less.

Ribble Valley Council’s policy and finance committee last week confirmed the implementation of the relief,from April, and was told would apply to around 250 local shops, restaurants, cafes and licensed premises.

Council leader Cllr Stephen Atkinson said: “Town centres are the heart of our communities, creating jobs, nurturing small businesses and boosting the economy.

“This relief will bring a boost to high street businesses across Ribble Valley, who provide a fantastic and much-valued service, and our officers will be working hard to apply it in time for the new financial year.”