AONB Encouraging Early Grant Applications

aonb signThe Isles of Scilly AONB wants groups and individuals who need funds for projects in Scilly to come forward now, rather than wait until the last minute.

Manager Trevor Kirk told their recent meeting that they’ve spent their allocation for the year running up to April 2013. They had hoped to ring-fence some of the £38,000 of the Sustainable Development Fund for agricultural projects including the islands’ new farming initiative, but that will now have to wait for next year’s grant programme.

Trevor says he hopes that publicising the award scheme earlier will mean more potential applicants will enquire whether they are suitable for the money, which comes from Defra.

Broadly, funds are awarded to projects that enhance the islands’ environment or provide economic and cultural opportunities here.

Last year, around £4,000 was awarded to the new St Agnes Island Hall, and a similar amount was offered to the rat eradication scheme on the island, which will protect the breeding grounds of Manx shearwater from rodents.

The Redwing Sailing Championships, held in Scilly last year, received £5,000 and money was also offered to both the Scilly Folk Festival and the Vet Support Group, who bought a digital X-ray machine.

Grant application information is available at the Old Wesleyan Chapel.