A PUB landlord has hit out again at Bradford Council after delays in the payment of Covid-19 business grants left him in hospital with stress-related illnesses.

Ronnie Hogg, who runs the Malt Kiln in Undercliffe, had just £300 to live off during January after a £9,000 grant he was due from the Council failed to arrive on time.

He said that this strain on finances has contributed to a whole host of physical and mental health problems which led to him going into hospital a couple of weeks ago.

Bradford Council said it “understands the pressure” local businesses are under and that staff have been working “very hard” to process and pay grants, but that the high workload and stringent checks needed have been “time consuming”.

Speaking at the end of January, Mr Hogg said he had been due to receive the £9,000 grant in mid-January, but had not received any cash.

He said: “It’s going downhill for me again because the Council are useless.

“I have all this stress and they just don’t seem bothered.

“I received £1,000 on January 6 and since then I’ve had nothing while other businesses have been paid, and of that £700 went to the brewery.

“Now it’s not only affecting my business but also my health; the way I’ve been treated is disgraceful.”

Mr Hogg spoke to a Bradford Council official, who said there had been an “error on the payment system”, but he would be paid by the end of last week.

“They need to get their act together, it’s driving me insane,” he added.

“I know something was wrong but at least now I’ve got the grant and can get some bills paid.”

Mr Hogg said he has suffered from stress-related illness and developed mental health problems due to the ordeal.

It’s not the first time Mr Hogg has spoken out about his frustration over delays to grants being paid on time.

Just before Christmas, he said he was “speaking on behalf of landlords suffering the same fate” when he complained about the delay in £7,000 in grants being paid to him by the Council.

He criticised the slow nature of the grants system which didn’t seem to grasp the urgency in which people needed the cash to pay bills and rent.

Bradford Council said it has paid out more than £130 million to local firms so far during the pandemic.

A spokesperson said: “We understand the tremendous pressures local business people are currently under and have been working very hard to process and pay business grants to eligible businesses.

“We have been in correspondence with the business in question who received their payment earlier in the week.

“We have recently paid over £30 million in Local Restrictions Grants to local rate paying businesses which have been forced to close.

“Since March, 2020, the council has paid £124 million to almost 11,000 local businesses via the Small Business and Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Business grants. This is the third highest of any council in England.

“A further £6.9 million of Local Authority Discretionary Grant funds has been paid to 639 businesses - the second highest in England.

“High workloads and the need to carry out the required government checks has been time-consuming, however, we will continue to pay grants as quickly as possible.”