Shire Leasing has been appointed as a funder for Greater Manchester’s Clean Air Zone financial support scheme (FSS).

Eligible applicants will be able to use their funding directly with Shire Leasing or via accredited vehicle dealers. They will be able to arrange finance to help upgrade non-compliant vehicles to lower emission vehicles ahead of the charging Clean Air Zone being introduced in Spring 2022.

Greater Manchester has secured more than £120m government funding to help local businesses upgrade vehicles, including support for light goods vehicles (LGV), heavy goods vehicles (HGV), coaches, hackney carriages, private hire vehicles (PHV) and minibuses.

Funding will be distributed through the Financial Support Scheme which will offer eligible owners of a non-compliant vehicle the option of either a lump sum grant, subsidised finance or a combination of the two to support upgrading to a compliant vehicle and ultimately avoid paying daily charges.

Following a competitive tender process, Shire Leasing were appointed by Greater Manchester, building on its experience of delivering a similar scheme for Bath and North East Somerset Council.

The Clean Air Zone will launch in the city on 30 May 2022 for buses, HGVs and out of area hackney and private hire vehicles (PHVs) and in June 2023 for light goods vehicles, registered taxis, PHVs, minibuses and coaches.

Julie Henehan, corporate development director of Shire Leasing, said: “No single person, business or city can tackle air pollution alone. We’re always looking to build relationships and collaborate with those who share the same vision as Shire and the Greater Manchester Clean Air Plan has created a network that aligns with shared goals, supporting local businesses and improving air quality.

“We’re proud to be appointed on this Financial Support Scheme and look forward to a bright future working alongside GM, our accredited vehicle dealers and Greater Manchester’s local businesses as we all come together to improve air quality, making GM an even better place to live, work and visit.”

Earlier this year, David Nield of V12 Vehicle Finance, outlined how dealers can prepare for anticipated surge in demand for low emission vehicles.