Council's £1m government funding bid for vision and community projects across Chichester District is approved
Spending plans for £1 million of government funding for Chichester District have been approved by the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.
Last year Chichester District Council applied for a portion of the Government's UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) to cover up to March 2025 in order to encourage economic growth and improve quality of life for people across the district.
The spending plan, which was officially approved by the government just before Christmas, has four key aims:
- to boost the local economy;
- help local businesses grow and thrive;
- enable investment in community spaces; and,
- reduce barriers to employment and education.
The UKSPF is a government allocated fund of £2.6 billion that is intended to support places and communities through encouraging pride in the local area and increasing opportunities for residents and businesses. With that in mind, the council's bid includes a particular focus on supporting projects that have been identified through the district's vision groups.
In addition, the council has applied for just over £718,000 of funding through the Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF) to be used for assets such as new buildings or equipment that meet the following criteria:
- Supporting new and existing rural businesses to develop new products and facilities that will be of wider benefit to the local economy, including farm businesses looking to diversify income streams.
- Supporting new and improved community infrastructure, providing essential community services and assets for local people and businesses to benefit the local economy.
Council officers have worked closely with communities across the district to consider the types of issues which could be addressed using the fund. The funding will enable the council to offer additional grants to local businesses and community groups who will be able to submit bids for projects that meet the funding criteria.
"We've been working closely with our partners across the district to identify the issues where projects may have the greatest impact in our district," explains Councillor Tony Dignum, the council's Cabinet Member for Growth, Place and Regeneration.
"Examples of projects that could benefit from the funding include those that are aimed at improving town centres and high streets; those that create and improve green spaces in our district as well as cultural, heritage and creative activities. We also want to support social action and volunteering projects, and initiatives which support local businesses and tourism as well as projects that will help people who are unemployed into work.
"This is an exciting opportunity for communities across the district and we are looking forward to helping make many of these projects a reality.
"I'm also delighted that on top of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund that we have been able to apply for Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF). We are due to hear the outcome of this application in late January and will of course promote details about how to apply for this once we have worked out the finer details."
Date of release: 11 January 2023