Looking for bright ideas to improve the Cotswolds
Cotswold District Council is inviting ideas to boost the district’s economy with over £1.7m funding available to local businesses and communities
The Council has opened applications for over £1.7m of funding that is available from the Governments UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) and Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF).
Cotswold District Council is managing the funding which has been provided by Central Government as part of the Levelling Up agenda to boost the local economy and build local communities.
So far the Cotswolds has seen some amazing success with the first year of UKSPF funding including Cotswold Friends Men in Sheds to support those in our district who may be experiencing bereavement, poor health or loneliness; wildflower planting in community spaces to brighten up the area and attract wildlife; improvements to a key pedestrian walkway in Cirencester town centre; and the building of additional offices at the Alliston Centre to support the growing array of businesses based there.
Any businesses or community groups interested in the Shared Prosperity funding and the projects it could support can find out more at www.cotswold.gov.uk/SPF. All submissions will need to be sent to the Council by 5pm on Friday 27th October 2023 using the form available on the website.
Applications for the Rural England Prosperity Fund are open until Friday 10th November 2023 and more information and guidance can be found at www.cotswold.gov.uk/REPF
Cllr Tony Dale, Cabinet Member for the Economy and Transformation, said, “I’m really looking forward to seeing the applications for both the UKSPF and the REPF. We have a real opportunity to make a difference across the district through this funding.
“The year one projects we’ve been able to support so far through the UKSPF have been brilliant, for example the improvements to pedestrian access to town centre businesses in Cirencester which are almost complete and the additional offices at the Growth Hub/Farm491 which are being built next month.
“As a council we are committed to being proactive and responding to the needs of our residents and businesses in a fast-changing environment, and to build for the future while respecting our heritage.
“I would encourage any organisation interested in either of the funds to check our website to see if the funding could help you.”
Verity Payne from Farm491 at the Alliston Centre said, “I’m really looking forward to the completion of the additional offices here at The Alliston Centre, they will provide further spaces for local businesses to flourish creating jobs and productivity in the county. It would not have been possible without the support of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund!”
Cotswold District Council Communications Team
Notes to editors
- More information on the scheme can be found at www.cotswold.gov.uk/SPF
- The fund can be used to give grants to public or private organisations, commission third-party organisations, procure services or provide loans.
- All projects have to be completed by the end of March 2025.
- Any applicants will be asked to make sure their submissions cover the key areas of focus which are:
- Improving green spaces
- Supporting town centres
- Energy efficiency
- Active travel
- Business Support
- Bringing forward employment sites
- Supporting people into work
- Green skills
- More information on the scheme can be found at www.cotswold.gov.uk/REPF
- Projects must be deliverable by the end of March 2025 and must comply with the REPF guidelines and can be anywhere within the Cotswold District.
- The REPF provides capital funding to:
- Support new and existing rural businesses to develop new products and facilities that will be of wider benefit to the local economy. This includes farm businesses looking to diversify income streams
- Support new and improved community infrastructure, providing essential community services and assets for local people and businesses to benefit the local economy
- Grants are for between £5000 and £50,000 and 50% match funding is required.
Pictured: Cllr Tony Dale, Cotswold District Council Cabinet Member for the Economy and Transformation.