Public Funding of Charitable Causes

Introduction

Under Section 137 of the Local Government Act 1972, local government has the power to fund community groups in terms of both revenue and capital expenditure.  This is undertaken in various ways such as via the County Council Leader, via a subcommittee of the Policy and Resources Committee and individually via the councillors themselves.

County Councillors Devolved Budget

When the councillor devolved budget scheme first started, councillors were able to allocate £10,000 per annum to local community groups, but by 2013 this had dropped to £8,000.  Over the years the scheme has been simplified for the applicant in that there is now a dedicated County Council web page where qualifying conditions can be confirmed before responding to a multi-page questionnaire.  In my time I have funded;-

  • West End Pre-School Installation of ramp to support disabled access to the building, child sized sink and improvement of facilities
  • Hilldene Community Centre – Supply of large oven to enable the preparation of hot food
  • Equipment for 1st Eastleigh Girls Brigade, Hedge End educational trip to Mexico
  • Marquee and Dining Shelters for 10th Itchen North Scouts group
  • Training equipment for Street Pastors operating out of Kings Community Church
  • Patient Information leaflets for Wessex Cancer Trust
  • Defibrillators managed by St John Ambulance for West End community buildings (Details to be made available shortly)
  • Support of the Eden Project, including a Multi-Use Games Area at Kings Community Church
  • Polytunnel project for Mencap
  • Flagship Art Club support for Mencap
  • Support of kitchen refurbishment at St Luke’s Church Hedge End
  • Support of community transport for St James’ Church Lunch Club, 2012 & 2014
  • Self-hire tennis scheme at Hedge End Town Council
  • Eastleigh Mela 2013 & 2015 To promote a multi-cultural festival in the centre of Eastleigh
  • Eastleigh Twinning Association, fostering cultural understanding between Kornwestheim, Villeneuve-Saint-Georges and Eastleigh
  • Publication of “Men who Marched Away” booklet to commemorate West End residents who lost their lives during the Great War, presented to every resident who attended the 2014 Remembrance Day Service at St James Church

Community Buildings Capital Fund – large projects

In West End, there are four community buildings, Hilldene Community Centre, which used to be West End’s primary school up until 1973, Townhill Farm Community Centre, the old Fire Station and the Parish Centre.  All of these buildings have rooms that can be hired out for various community uses.   It is this type of facility that Hampshire County Council has set aside on a one-off basis, £1m for a programme of significant improvements.  The funding stream known as the “Community Buildings Capital Fund” supports capital based projects including refurbishment and improvement of Hampshire community centres, village halls and charitable and voluntary organisations.

A small number of grants of up to £150,000 will be awarded for projects valued at £50,000 and over which substantially improve the building to increase usage or which enable the joint use of a building by the merger of two or more community organisations.  Projects should be well developed, ideally with planning permission in place, and organisations should also apply for funding from their local borough or district council, where available.  Learn more…

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