SIX Swindon good causes are celebrating earning a share of £1.7m worth of south west grants from The Big Lottery Fund.

Between them Oliver Tomkins Junior School, Oliver Tomkins Nursery, Lethbridge Primary School, Swindon Fencing Club, Discovering Autistic Spectrum Happiness – Dash – and a Highworth volunteer project have received £58,046.

The town’s fencing club will be using its £10,000 grant to launch a programme to encourage disadvantaged girls to engage with the sport.

Neil Bromley, the club’s president, said: “This money is a great boost. It will act as a catalyst for our plans and enable us to buy new equipment.

“We know that physical education can sometimes be difficult for girls and we are looking to offer something a little different which will improve their fitness and also give them skills which they can use outside sport.

“Primarily we are looking to support girls, from all ethnicities, but we’d also be happy to offer the programme to teenage boys too.”

The club will be working with Swindon Council to launch their project.

Charity DASH was given £9,648 which will be used to help those with autistic spectrum disorder.

Lethbridge Primary School is using the £9,964 they received to create a new outdoor learning area.

The Big Lottery Fund has given £8,729 to a Highworth group who aim to recruit volunteers to help people living in care homes.

Oliver Tomkins Junior School will use its £9,705 grant to fund wellbeing workshops for staff and pupils, while its nursery has been given £10,000 to buy outdoor equipment.

Lyn Cole, Big Lottery Fund’s England director, said: “National Lottery money is making a positive impact in local communities, helping to change lives for the better and support a wealth of projects in the south west.

“These projects demonstrate the life-changing difference a small amount of lottery funding can have and will continue to do so, long into the future. I wish them all the best of luck.”

Any groups wishing to apply for a grant from the organisation can visit