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Flood-hit businesses will be given some breathing space to allow them to work on corporate recovery, without being unduly punished by late filing penalties and other such unwelcome challenges.

The Prime Minister and the Department for Business, Innovation & Skills have outlined several forms of support and relief for flood-affected companies.

Clearly the worst-hit area has been the south-west, but with parts of the north-west coastline also battered by storms in recent weeks, businesses in those areas may also qualify for support.

The package involves £10 million of additional funding to be allocated to businesses facing exceptional costs, as well as to fund the clean-up operation and any materials needed.

Late filing of accounts by flood-affected businesses will not attract any penalties from Companies House, meaning overdue admin should pose no undue threat to corporate recovery.

David Cameron said: “Dealing with these floods will be a long haul, requiring a stepped-up national effort with the whole country pulling together.

“We will continue to help the people who need help and protect the communities that need protecting.”