Mid Sussex District Council awards over £320,000 to local community groups

PR2365/ES/MF - 05/07/2021

Mid Sussex District Council has awarded local community groups more than £320,000 in Section 106 developer contributions and grant funding to support the excellent work they are doing in the community.

The Cabinet Grants Panel met on 28 June to discuss the summer 2021 grant funding allocations and agreed to issue a total of £320,768 to 12 voluntary organisations from across Mid Sussex. The funding awards will be formally confirmed on 8 July following a 10 day ‘call-in’ period.

The grants will be used to deliver a variety of community projects including, clubs for young people, support for families with babies and the expansion of the Burgess Hill Shed project, which helps people, particularly older men, to socialise and improve their mental wellbeing.

Age UK West Sussex, Brighton and Hove has been awarded a grant of £20,000 towards the cost of furnishing and opening the new Kings Weald community building in Burgess Hill. The new building has been provided by developer Croudace as part of the Kings Weald development requirements from MSDC Planning and will include a community café, provide extensive activities for children and families, services for older people and the halls and rooms will be available for residents to hire for a variety of events, when it is handed over to the Council later this year.

Carers Support West Sussex will receive £5,000 towards their popular ‘Check-in and Chat’ befriending service. Many people have unexpectedly become carers during the pandemic and the need for support that helps combat isolation and loneliness has never been greater. This grant funding will enable the charity to invest in digital equipment and expand virtual support groups that help carers connect with services and peers for support.

Section 106 developer contributions in the sum of £100,000 have been released to Mid Sussex District Scouts Council to help fund a new community centre they intend to build at Barn Cottage Recreation Ground in Haywards Heath. The new community building will enable the Scouts to accommodate an additional 180 young people per week and the facility will be available for community use during the daytime and at weekends. It will provide extra space to accommodate community activities like yoga classes, scout meetings, craft fairs, children’s parties and charity events.

The new community centre will be linked to the existing Barn Cottage Recreation Ground Pavilion and a further £171,160 of Section 106 developer contributions has been allocated to fund the extension and refurbishment of the existing pavilion.

Haywards Heath Bentswood Councillor Stephen Hillier said:

“The improvements are being designed so that the building will be suitable for a much wider range of activities for our residents to enjoy and to provide a range of support services for those that need it. We have waited a long time for genuine community space in our area and I am delighted that partnership working is seeing this ambition coming to fruition. I am grateful to Sussex Clubs for Young People, Clarion Futures and the District Council for the outstanding support that they have given.”

Councillor Norman Webster, Cabinet Member for Community said:

“The Coronavirus pandemic has had a huge impact on local government finances but we’re determined to maintain our support for the voluntary sector, through these difficult times and beyond.

“Mid Sussex is so fortunate to have a dedicated and diverse army of volunteers who do such amazing work to support others in the local community. As a District Council, we’ve always done everything we can to support their efforts and it’s fantastic we are able to fund these wonderful local projects that make such a difference to our communities.”

For more information contact Mid Sussex District Council Community Facilities Project Officer Elaine Clarke on 01444 477275 or email elaine.clarke@midsussex.gov.uk.