It’s grant expectations

CASH bids by more than 50 Fenland organisations to secure a share of £266,000 being awarded by Fenland District Council were due to be agreed yesterday. Cabinet members were expected to rubber stamp a report by a grants review sub-committee, which met bef

CASH bids by more than 50 Fenland organisations to secure a share of £266,000 being awarded by Fenland District Council were due to be agreed yesterday.

Cabinet members were expected to rubber stamp a report by a grants review sub-committee, which met before Christmas.

Every application was looked at by the sub-committee, which assured the cabinet that first-time applications were given the same priority as established organisations which bid for funds each year.

Every recommendation to cabinet demonstrated how each application had been viewed alongside the council's priorities, and contained a "risk assessment" to evaluate what might happen to the organisation if the grant was rejected.

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Here is the full list of groups bidding for money, and the recommendations:

1 Wisbech St Mary Age Concern lunch club, needing £2,000 for running costs and travel. Refuse on the grounds that the money could be found elsewhere from Age Concern or Awards for All.

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2 Ambience Salon, Wisbech, £20,000 for capital improvements. Refuse. "Commercial venture not a community group".

3 Angles Theatre, Wisbech, £20,000. Agree to give £12,000. "The theatre could close without some core funding. Good management and a good attempt at self-sufficiency".

4 Arts in Cambs on Tour, Fenland wide, £5,000. Agree in full, "valuable service for rural areas of Fenland, very good value for money, would struggle without FDC funding".

5 Bobby Scheme, Fenland wide, £10,000. Offer £2,500. The scheme helps victims of crime. "Service would be delivered in Fenland without funding, but not for free, therefore supporting this would make the scheme far less accessible for the most vulnerable".

6 Care Network, Fenland wide, £18,467. Refuse. "This project has some value but we question whether a full-time worker is really needed - will we miss what we've never had? The Care Network have a healthy reserve and the ability to apply to many funders."

7 Chatteris Festival, £2,700. Agree to give £1,000. "This event needs support to take place." However, FDC believes the town council and businesses should also contribute.

8 Chatteris Christmas Lights, £1,600. Agree to give £1,000. "FDC support should be matched by other support and sponsorship."

9 Come and Be Heard, Chatteris, £1,150. Agree to give £500. Specialist group for people with hearing problems. "Valued grass roots organisation with little reserve or capacity to raise further funds."

10 Cromwell Community College, Chatteris, £10,000. Agree to give £4,000 to support greater community use. "There seems to be no reason why this facility cannot be self sustaining, therefore we intend to encourage this by reducing the grant requested."

11 Enterprise Fenland, Fenland wide, £10,000. Agree to full amount. "Valuable service for the whole of Fenland and supports our Open for Business objective very strongly. Only organisation delivering the services they delivers and our funding levers in a considerable amount of EEDA funding." FDC funding helps to attract an extra £115,000.

12 Estover playing fields, March, £7,000. Agree to give £3,500. "Deserves some support ... the group should look to other funders if further funding is required."

13 FACET, March, £22,725. Refuse. FACET wants to develop a re-use and recycling project for people with learning disabilities. "FACET have already received a lot of FDC support. This is an additional project and the organisation will not cease to operate or be very badly affected if the project doesn't go ahead. No clear business plan, many similar schemes in the area. Concern over the capacity of the organisation to deliver this project."

14 FACT, Fenland wide, £18,802. Refuse. Capital funding for a new minibus "which is not the focus of this funding stream".

15 FCVS, Fenland wide, £12,000. Agree full amount. "A vital service to the community and voluntary sector, providing support services. Very good value for money."

16 FCVS, project worker, £19,000. Refuse. A good project to employ an officer to work with community groups "but FDC cannot support it in the current climate and the project is not very sustainable after year one".

17 Fendis, Fenland wide, £12,777. Group supports sports for disabled people. Agree to give £8,000 for a project which would "cease without our support". However "some of the costs seem inflated/unnecessary".

18 Fenland Adventure, Fenland wide, £1,850. Agree. To run play activities in villages. "Valuable and much needed service."

19 Fenland Arts Association, £29,500 of core funding. Agree to give £18,000 to "valuable organisation with a lot of very good projects". However, FDC "cannot support them at the level they are asking so other funders should be sought".

20 Fenland Arts, summer arts programme, £5,000. Refuse. "Valuable but could easily be funded externally."

21 Fenland Arts, market place entertainment, £5,000. Agree to give £1,200. "This project is very important to FDC markets and therefore deserves some support. However, other funding could be sourced externally."

22 Fenland Community Laundry, £4,990 to continue bi-monthly events in March and coffee mornings. Refuse. "This project was not seen as value for money."

23 Fenland Crossroads, Chatteris, £5,000. Refuse. The club wants to set up a weekly day club but FDC feels it should be supported by the PCT or self-supporting.

24 Fenland Twinning Association, £1,800 for core and bursary funding. Agree to give £1,000. "This group would cease without FDC support. However, this application supplied with very little information, no clear outputs or aims and no financial information."

25 Fenland Volunteer Bureau, £11,350 to continue and recruit volunteers. Refuse. "It was not felt that this was the best way of increasing volunteering in Fenland and not good value for money."

26 Flash Trash, March, a social enterprise working with adults with disabilities, £1,500. Agree to give £500. "A valuable experience for people with learning difficulties. The council will also try to source a computer for the group from its stock."

27 Friday Bridge Village Group, £5,000 to buy equipment for young people aged 10-16 for the village playing field. Refuse. "This is a capital item which is not the focus of the funding stream."

28 Friends of Wisbech Park, £4,995 to create name plates and plaques throughout the park. Refuse. "Potential use doesn't seem to warrant the expenditure on this item."

29 Global Grants, Fenland wide, £10,000. Agree in full. "An excellent scheme which brings in many thousands of pounds in European money to Fenland." FDC committed to a three-year agreement last year.

30 King Edward Centre, Chatteris, £10,000 of core funding. Agree to give £5,000. "The centre will close without FDC support. Valuable community facility."

31 Leverington Over 60s, £500 for outings. Refuse. "The club have operated without FDC support for many years and could raise the money for their outings very easily from fees."

32 Living Sport, Fenland wide, £4,870 for coaching workshops and training. Refuse. FDC is already delivering similar work and "there is no real evidence of need for this project".

33 March Brass, £252 for concerts in public places. Agree to give £250.

34 March Festival, £5,000. Agree to give £2,000. "Deserves some support but FDC support should be matched by other support and sponsorship."

35 March Christmas lights, £2,250. Agree to give £1,000.

36 NACRO, Wisbech, £10,739 for new weekly meeting point for young people. Refuse. "This is a large charity with the ability to apply to many funders. Not Fenland specific in its work."

37 Princes Trust, Fenland wide, £15,000 to fund outreach manager . Refuse. "There is no real evidence of need for an extra post."

38 Relate, Fenland wide, £4,978 to deliver skills for life sessions in Fenland secondary schools. Refuse. "This was seen as a county function as it is delivered in secondary schools in school time."

39 Scaldgate Club, Whittlesey, £2,000 to help those with learning difficulties. Agree. "Value resource with many users which would close without FDC support."

40 St John Church, March, £2,000 for capital funding for first aid equipment. Refuse. "Capital item not the focus of this funding scheme. The organisation will not cease to operate without our support and has good reserves."

41 What's Next, Chatteris, £845 for group for adults with challenging illnesses. Agree. "Valuable group with many users."

42 Whittlesey Manor Bowls Club, £4,000. Agree. Pays for maintenance of the public bowls green and would cost FDC "a lot more money if it was not maintained by the club".

43 Whittlesey Straw Bear Festival, £1,000. Agree to give £500. "Deserves some support."

44 WisARD Apple Day, Wisbech, £1,550 for core costs of running Apple Day. Refuse. "An ideal project to seek sponsorship rather than grants support."

45 WisARD postcards, Wisbech, £1,2000 to create a set of postcards depicting Wisbech to sell to tourists. Refuse. "Should be self-sustaining through the sale of postcards."

46 WisARD project manager, Wisbech, £20,000 for core funding to support full-time manager. Agree to give £10,000. "Vital to receive support as they will fold without FDC input. However, a full-time manager is not needed, therefore, half the amount requested should be offered."

47 Wisbech Christmas lights, £4,600. Agree to give £1,000.

48 Wisbech in Bloom, £4,960 to create a special 'in bloom' display for the abolition of slavery. Agree to donate £2,000.

49 Wisbech Pelargonium Club, £1,145 to cover costs of hosting British and European Geranium Society National Show. Refuse. "This event should be self-sustaining. No indication of income or total expenditure, this could be self-funding through entrance fees."

50 Wisbech Rose Fair, £7,500 for core costs. Agree to give £3,750. Matched funding needed. "The Rose Fair also shows a considerable profit in their accounts, therefore it can afford to cover some of the costs."

51 Wisbech Round Table (Rose Fair), £1,200 for Rose Fair parade. Agree to give £600.

52 Young People, March, £10,000 core funding to staff the centre, and keep it operational. Agree to give £8,000. "Vital resource for young people and is much needed and well used. They have become much more business like and sustainable in the last year. The application is good value for money as it effects many young people."

- Fenland Citizen's Advice Bureau will get £81,000 a year for three years and Wisbech and Fenland Museum £52,000 next year and £50,000 in years two and three. These are funded under service level agreements and the CAB includes £16,000 from the housing revenue account for the housing advice it provides.

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