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Council to add £200 to government payment

Bedford Borough Council is making the Test and Trace Support Payment available to more people and has increased the Support Payment to £700. The Council said the payment will cover the earnings of someone working full time on the Living Wage.

In Bedford Borough, an individual is eligible for a Test and Trace Support Payment if:

  • They have been told to self-isolate by NHS Test and Trace, and
  • Have responded to the Test and Trace messages about their contacts, and
  • Are unable to work from home, and


  • Are currently receiving Universal Credit, Working Tax Credit, income-based Employment and Support Allowance, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, Income Support, Housing Benefit and/or Pension Credit, or
  • Are on a low income (household earns less than £25,000 per year) and can show that self-isolation will result in financial hardship

If anyone has any symptoms of coronavirus: high temperature, new continuous cough, loss or change to your sense of smell or taste, it is really important that they self-isolate and book at test at

Also, anyone contacted by NHS Test and Trace and asked to self-isolate, must do so for the full amount of time they are told. Someone may not test positive or show symptoms straight away, but you could still be infectious and spread the virus to others, as it can take 10 days to develop the symptoms.

Councillor Michael Headley, portfolio holder for Finance and Welfare, said:

“By increasing this payment by £200 and making it available to more people, we are making it easier for those on the lowest incomes to self-isolate when they are required to. It is important for all of us that people can self-isolate when told to and prevent the spread of the virus.

“You can apply for this payment and find out more via our website by visiting

The Government provides a £500 Test and Trace Support Payment, which the Council is topping up to £700 from the Local Outbreak Management Fund.