Making £1m project clear
MEMBERS of the Toothill Big Local partnership committee have moved to clarify how progress is now being made with distribution of the £1m lottery grant awarded to the area in 2010.
None of the £1m grant has yet been released, which is being held by Swindon Council until approval is given by Local Trust, an umbrella organisation for all 150 winners of the grants.
Toothill are currently in the process of contacting other potential organisations to take the funds until its release. After a partnership committee was set up in April, they moved as soon as possible to make funds available for small bids of up to £500.
Money available now has come from additional funds handed out to formulate the Big Local Process, including £20,000 to get started, topped up by £10,000 handed down to each of the first 50 areas to receive the grant.
A further £30,000 was awarded to promote community engagement, with £20,000 of Pathway Funding. While some of this money has been used to hold community events and bring in specialists, £12,750 is being released for small community chest bids following training sessions over the last month.
Another round of funding will become available in January, and will continue every quarter until the Big Local Plan, which is being drawn up by the partnership committee, is endorsed. The full £1m will then be released, the committee expect, in July.
The first community chest application process is due to close on 28 November, and grants will be awarded by the end of the year.
The Big Local Plan will operate over a ten year period, and will consist of both small community chest bids and larger projects, applications for which will be invited next year.
Peter Egan, deputy chair of the Toothill Big Local partnership committee, said: “We are approaching the process in two parts. One deals with smaller bids, and that is the community chest. In parallel to that we are working on the larger bids.
“Larger projects, such as repairing the scout hut roof, are being processed, but they have to meet the funding criteria.
“These things should be in place next summer.”
Kareen Boyd, chair of the Toothill Big Local partnership committee, said: “It has taken all of the areas awarded this grant a while to get started. There is a clear process we have to follow, and it is important that we do it properly.”
“Due to the hard work of many involved from the outset a solid foundation is now in place to make Toothill an even better place to live.
“We are keen that people understand just what a fantastic opportunity this is for Toothill.”
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