UK Shared Prosperity Fund and Rural England Prosperity Fund Grants Programme
The £2.6bn UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) is funding provided by the Government. The fund is intended to replace EU structural funds following the UK's exit from the EU. The funding is available in financial years 2023/24 and 2024/25. The level of available funding will increase each year to the maximum level in the final year.
The UKSPF aligns with the Government's Levelling Up agenda. The primary goal being to build pride of place and increase life chances. The UKSPF should lead to visible and tangible improvements to places, as well as investment in human and social capital.
The funding priorities for the UKSPF are:
Communities and place - enabling investment in restoring community spaces, relationships and creating foundations for economic development at a neighbourhood-level. Outputs under this theme should strengthen the social fabric of communities. It should also support building pride in place.
Support for local businesses - interventions that support local businesses to thrive, innovate and grow.
People and skills (2024/25 only) - reducing barriers to employment some people face. Then supporting them to move towards employment and education. It can also include targeting of funding towards skills to support employment and local growth.
Some local authorities are also eligible for funding from the Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF). This fund is a top-up to the UKSPF. The fund supports activities that address the particular challenges faced by rural areas.
Chichester District Council has been allocated £1m from the UKSPF. The council has an additional, indicative allocation of £718k from the REPF. To access the funding, we were asked to submit an Investment Plan to the government. The plan had to:
- reflect the current local challenges;
- opportunities; and,
- set out how the funding could help address issues and harness opportunities.
The Investment Plan also included our selections from a list of possible interventions. These interventions were identified following a consultation, and were the most relevant to our area.
As well as delivering some projects ourselves, Chichester District Council is making funding available to other organisations. This is to deliver projects that meet the Fund's objectives and support our chosen interventions. We are doing this through a competitive grants process.
Once you have identified an intervention, and have a clear idea of how your project will meet the outputs and outcomes, please contact the most appropriate Funding Advisor before making an application.
- Funding advisor - business
Name: Derek Irvine
Tel: 01243 534711
- Funding advisor - sport, arts, leisure and wellbeing groups
Name: Sam Lee
Telephone: 01243 534798
- Funding advisor - environment and biodiversity
Name: Tom Day
Telephone: 01243 534854
- Funding advisor - community groups, voluntary organisations, town councils and parish councils
Name: James Brigden
Telephone: 01243 534864
Who can apply for a grant through this funding?
Any organisation with legal status can apply for both the UK Shared Prosperity Fund or the Rural England Prosperity Fund.
This may include:
- local authorities;
- public sector organisations;
- higher and further education institutions;
- private sector companies;
- voluntary organisations; and,
- registered charities.
Not all locations in the district are eligible for these grant funds
Although all postcode areas within Chichester district will be considered for projects under the UK Shared Prosperity Fund, some areas within the district do not meet the criteria for eligibility under the Rural England Prosperity Fund (REPF). The eligibility criteria for the REPF has been set by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA).
As a guide, the areas not eligible for REPF include the settlement boundaries of:
- Chichester city
What can grant funding be requested towards?
Grants must be for business and community purposes.
UKSPF grant funding can be used to pay for revenue or capital costs.
REPF may only be used for capital projects. This means you must spend grants on lasting assets such as a building or equipment. You cannot spend them on revenue costs, such as running costs or promotional activities.
Projects should demonstrate value for money and additionality. You should also consider how your project contributes to net zero and nature recovery objectives. To support green growth, think about how projects can work with the natural environment to achieve objectives. At a minimum, you need to consider the project's impact on our natural assets and nature. Projects will be prioritised that deliver the greatest economic, environmental and social benefits.
What cannot be funded
A number of costs cannot be covered by either funds. These include:
- paid for lobbying, entertaining, petitioning or challenging decisions. This means using the Fund to lobby (via an external firm or in-house staff) in order to undertake activities intended to influence or attempt to influence:
- political activity including the receipt of UKSPF funding; or,
- attempting to influence legislative or regulatory action
- payments for activities of a party political or exclusively religious nature
- VAT reclaimable from HMRC
- gifts, or payments for gifts or donations
- statutory fines, criminal fines or penalties
- payments for works or activities which the lead local authority, project deliverer, end beneficiary, or any member of their partnership has a statutory duty to undertake or that are funded by other sources
- contingencies and contingent liabilities
- bad debts, costs resulting from the deferral of payments to creditors, or winding up a company
- expenses in respect of litigation, unfair dismissal or other compensation
- costs incurred by individuals in setting up and contributing towards private pension schemes
- Retrospective costs
- Improvements to domestic properties
- Purchase of private vehicles
For REPF: projects that have received funding from other DEFRA schemes. This includes:
- the Farming in Protected Landscapes Programme;
- the Farming Investment Fund; or,
- the Platinum Jubilee Village Hall Improvement Grant Fun.