In a video posted online, chair of English UK London and director of Bayswater Education James Herbertson said there will be a “devastating effect” on the city’s language schools if business rates relief is not extended.

Local businesses – including hospitality venues, taxi companies, host families – have also all been affected by the decline in international English language students during the pandemic, stakeholders highlighted.

The country’s language school sector has been calling for the government to address a “postcode lottery” business rate relief for more than 12 months.

Central government has allowed local authorities to decide whether providers should be granted business rate relief, meaning some schools in certain regions have benefited, while swathes of schools across the UK have gone without similar levels of support.

“It trickles down to the teachers, the cleaners, shops nearby, taxi drivers”

“The range of people who are affected, it’s not just the people who own the schools,” English UK London committee member Mike Summerfield noted in the video.

“It trickles down to the teachers, the cleaners, shops nearby, taxi drivers.”

“We are asking one simple thing,” Herbertson continued. “Extend business rates relief to all language schools up and down the country.”

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