Grosvenor Estate helps local communities cope with Coronavirus

25th March 2020

Grosvenor Estate helps local communities cope with Coronavirus

The Grosvenor Estate is helping businesses, families and the most vulnerable in society manage the impact of Coronavirus through different forms of assistance within the communities we are part of.

With the full support and encouragement of the Duke of Westminster, the Grosvenor family and the Grosvenor Estate Trustees, all parts of our organisation, including international property company Grosvenor Group, food and agriculture investor Wheatsheaf Group and the Grosvenor Estate Family Office which manages a number of rural estates, are working – in the UK and internationally – with urban and rural communities to offer practical support, and in many cases a lifeline, to help businesses and individuals overcome the present situation. 

Our initiatives include:

  • Offering rent deferrals and rent-free arrangements to independent and vulnerable retail tenants and other commercial businesses, including farms, to help with cashflow concerns. Where possible, and in line with local Government advice, we are also ensuring they can keep their operations open. 
  • The Westminster Foundation, which represents the charitable activity of the Duke of Westminster and Grosvenor Estate, is making an initial sum of £2.5m immediately available to support vulnerable groups and key workers. The money will predominantly be used to support vulnerable families through the provision of food and activities to promote the mental and physical wellbeing of young people. 
  • This donation is in addition to £250k already committed by Grosvenor Britain & Ireland to the London Community Foundation to support community-based organisations in managing front line efforts to help those in greatest need. 
  • Contacting vulnerable residential tenants who may be experiencing similar concerns about paying their rent with a commitment to supporting them over the coming weeks and months.
  • The forthcoming rent for our 26 charities within our London estate portfolio, which is already heavily discounted, has been waived. 
  • Helping suppliers with cashflow by paying them in advance and as quickly as possible.
  • Looking to make available a number of our properties in Mayfair and Belgravia to key workers and offering vacant properties and spaces to local Councils to help with their relief efforts.

Wheatsheaf Group, the arm of the Grosvenor Estate which invests in food and agriculture businesses to create efficiencies in the production and distribution of food, is supporting:

  • Ethical grocer Farmdrop (a company in which we are a significant shareholder) in responding to unprecedented demand by doubling the amount of orders it is able to deliver every day. Farmdrop sources and delivers food from small producers direct to consumers, ensuring the majority of the price goes back to the farmer.
  • One of our companies, Ozo Innovations, is producing disinfectants which de-activate the COVID-19 virus at its facilities in Oxford. It is making this available to local health, transport, care home and prison services.
Across our rural communities in Cheshire, Lancashire, and the Scottish Highlands we are:
  • Maintaining orders for fresh foods from local suppliers to local businesses that have had to close, redistributing them to those who are most in need.
  • Facilitating “safe distance” home delivery of free school meals to children impacted by school closures.
  • Assisting with food deliveries to self-isolating households from local food shops and community farm vegetable box suppliers.
  • Helping school children without broadband in rural locations access the internet to enable remote learning.
In order to deliver this initial range of support we are indebted to the commitment of our people. We are taking care not to compromise the nation’s primary aim of reducing the rate at which the virus spreads and protect those at risk – abiding by local Government advice, ensuring good hygiene and recommended social distancing, avoiding all non-essential travel and enabling flexible and remote working. 

The Grosvenor Estate will review the support we are providing on an ongoing basis, adapting our response as needed to ensure we continue to do all we can to help our communities.

« Back