£1m boost for deprived communities
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Residents from nine deprived areas in the North West will be given the power to decide how £1 million will be spent improving their communities.
Brinnington in Stockport, Beechwood in Wirral, Kirkholt in Rochdale, West End Morecambe in Lancaster and Inner East Preston are among 50 areas across England benefiting from the Big Lottery Fund’s (Big) Big Local programme.
Westy in Warrington, Wargrave in St Helens, Sale West in Trafford and Distington in Copeland will also benefit from the programme.
The £200 million investment scheme was launched by Big in July 2010 to support 150 small urban and rural communities come together to make their areas even better places to live.
Residents can use their £1 million on anything from training and employment schemes, to tackling anti-social behaviour, creating new community facilities or providing more activities for young people.
As well as funding for improvements, each area will receive training and support from Local Trust – an organisation set up to deliver Big Local. The trust will help residents spend the funding and increase their confidence, skills and know-how so they are better able to come together to make positive changes in their areas in future.
The 50 areas join 100 communities previously announced across England, including 17 across the North West, that have already been allocated funding and are working together on plans to spend their £1 million.
Areas in the North West already benefiting from the programme include Leigh West in Wigan. Residents plan to use part of their funding to address the number of empty, boarded-up and poor quality properties that are blighting the neighbourhood.
Working with local organisations, residents are setting up a new social enterprise through which they will buy and renovate run-down properties and let them out to local people.
As well as creating better quality housing, the scheme will also create job opportunities for local trades-people and profits from the lets will be reinvested in the community.
How should we spend the money that is heading for inner East Preston? Have your say and get involved with FOFS.