The County Council is the lead authority for the £220m Community Renewal Fund and will receive and assess bids to submit to Government for consideration. The County Council will work with local partners, including the five district and borough councils, community and voluntary organisations and the education sector, including universities, to identify local projects and work up bids designed to stimulate growth.
The Community Renewal Fund is allocating funding until the end of March 2022.
100 places across the UK have been identified as priority areas by Government, none of which are in Warwickshire. However, this does not exclude strong Warwickshire-based applications from consideration and success.
Speaking around the launch of the fund, Mark Ryder, Strategic Director for Communities at Warwickshire County Council, said: “This is a national fund and is likely to be highly competitive. It is essential that we bring forward a set of high quality, well developed project proposals that can deliver quickly.
“I am confident that, alongside our partners, we will be ready to submit compelling proposals that, if successful, can make a real difference in Warwickshire.”
Further information about Warwickshire applications to the Community Renewal Fund can be found at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/crf.
Alongside the Government’s criteria for applications, the County Council is particularly seeking proposals around the priorities which have been identified as including, in Warwickshire, skills needs around the county’s future growth sectors such as electric vehicles, battery technology, creative and digital; enterprise and start-up support, particularly for young people and under-represented groups; inclusive employment support for more vulnerable groups, and exploring innovative approaches to supporting the rural economy.
Other areas for consideration will include community projects round culture-led regeneration, improving green spaces and preserving local assets that can then stimulate the local economy and create local employment, particularly among young people.
The funding is revenue-based so applications will not be supported if they are intended for purchase of land, construction or large equipment.
Support with applications is available from Coventry and Warwickshire Local Enterprise Partnership. Applicants can email email@example.com for advice and help in assessing whether their proposal is suitable and, if so, how best to shape their application.
Sarah Windrum, chair of the CWLEP said: “We fully support the council’s ambition and would look to work with applicants to give them the greatest chance of success to help deliver the priorities that will help our communities to bounce back.
“Our Strategic Reset Framework – which aligns with county’s Economic Growth Strategy and Recovery Plan – is the key long-term economic recovery strategy and vision to drive Coventry & Warwickshire’s economy as we emerge from the Covid-19 crisis, and success in the Community Renewal Fund would support that effort.”