We have a financial assistance scheme available to support people who are severely affect by the introduction of Bath's Clean Air Zone. The scheme provides grants and interest-free finance to help those who may regularly have to pay charges for journeys in the zone.
You can use the money to replace non-compliant vehicles – or adapt an existing vehicle - so you don't have to pay the charge. In the long term, this could be a more cost-effective alternative to paying daily charges, while also helping to improve air quality in Bath.
You may be eligible for the scheme if you have chargeable, non-compliant vehicles that travel frequently into or around the zone, or if you operate from a premises within the zone. We will give priority to individuals, charities, sole traders, and small businesses located in B&NES and neighbouring areas.
You must have been living at your current address, or trading from it, and have owned the vehicle you want to replace, since April 2020.
How the scheme operates
When you apply to the scheme, we’ll provide you with a telematic device that will record your vehicle’s movements for two months. The device should be left in the vehicle full-time until we ask you to return it. We’ll produce a report of your vehicle’s trips into Bath's Clean Air Zone which you can pass on to the finance provider as evidence of your eligibility.
All applications to our financial partners will be subject to credit checks, and the maximum repayment period for the interest-free finance will be 60 months, which can be extended to 84 months for some specialist vehicles, including buses and coaches.
We will only accept applications to replace existing non-compliant vehicles that are roadworthy, have a valid MOT certificate, and are not nationally or permanently exempt from charges. The scheme cannot be used for adding vehicles to your fleet.
If your application is accepted, you’ll be able to apply for a temporary exemption for existing Euro 4 and 5 diesel vehicles until the expected handover date, or from two years of the zone’s launch (whichever is sooner). If you pass the eligibility assessment but fail the financial checks, you’ll be able to apply to exempt any Euro 4 or Euro 5 diesel vehicles for two years from the zone’s launch. There will be no temporary exemption for pre-euro-4 vehicles.
If you qualify for financial support
You can use the funds to reduce the cost of any of the following:
- Replacing existing non-compliant vehicles with new or second-hand vehicles which meet Bath’s emissions standards
- Retrofitting or re-powering existing or replacement non-compliant vehicles so that they meet Bath’s emissions standards.
Any replacement vehicles must be a similar make or model to your existing vehicle, but must be compliant with Bath's emissions standards.
The scheme is 'technology neutral', so you can decide on the best route towards compliance for you or your business. If you’re considering upgrading to electric vehicles, then you may want to visit the GOV.UK website to read about plug-in grants for electric vehicles, which are available directly from dealerships and manufacturers.
In exceptional circumstances, we may provide finance to retrofit or re-power existing non-compliant vehicles, or to replace a non-compliant vehicle with a different type or size of vehicle. We will only consider this where there is an additional air quality benefit, or to protect vital services to customers (for example, to exchange a coach with a bus, to comply with Disability Discrimination Act requirements.)
The value of the grant
You could receive a grant of up to 35% of the net upgrade costs, significantly reducing the final cost of an upgrade. These grants can be used alongside the scheme’s interest free finance. Grants are capped for each vehicle type, as shown below.
- Taxis, PHVs and vans: up to £4,500
- HGVs: up to £20,000
- Buses and coaches: up to £35,000
Register your interest
You can register your interest in the scheme online. This will not affect your credit rating and there is no obligation to apply. A member of our team will contact you to explain the scheme in more detail, including its full terms and conditions and how to apply.
To register your interest, you will need to supply the following information:
- how many non-compliant vehicles you have
- whether the vehicles have telematics fitted
You can check whether your vehicles will be charged in the zone using GOV.UK’s vehicle checker.