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Lottery £200m set to transform England’s ‘forgotten’ communities

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BIG Local
Release date:
10 12 2012

• Over one million people set to benefit from nationwide scheme that gives residents in 150 needy areas power to make changes
• Lottery’s largest ever community-led investment
• Final 50 areas named by Big Lottery Fund today

‘Forgotten’ pockets of the country – from the World’s End Estate in London to the former mining town of Selby in Yorkshire – are set to be transformed through a Lottery scheme.

People in areas typically overlooked by external funders, are being given the chance to improve their communities and create a positive legacy for future generations.

Today 50 communities join the existing 100 areas allocated at least £1million Lottery funding through the Big Lottery Fund’s (BIG) Big Local programme, with residents themselves deciding how to improve their areas over the next decade.

The areas have been pinpointed by BIG as ones that have previously been overlooked for funding and investment, that face a range of different issues from the decline of industry to high levels of unemployment and crime, or a pressing need for new support services or activities. BIG has taken radical action to put this right and help build a community capable not only of spending cash but securing more in the future.

Residents must come together to do the best they can with their £1 million, which can be used on anything from training and employment schemes, to tackling anti-social behaviour, creating new community facilities or providing more activities for young people.

Nat Sloane, Big Lottery Fund’s England Chair, explains: “These areas have for many years been overlooked and have missed out on vital funding and resources – they have people who are high on aspiration but until now have been low on opportunity.

“Through our long-term funding, commitment, training and support over at least the next ten years, we will redress that balance; giving them the power, confidence and ability to spend this funding in the ways that matter most to their community.

“This is the Lottery’s largest ever investment in community-led regeneration. This kind of investment is powerful – it goes way beyond annual budgetary cycles of local authorities or the parliamentary terms of well-intentioned governments. It is the kind of investment that is going to help people in these areas achieve lasting, meaningful change, for their children and generations to come.”


As well as funding for improvements, each area will receive training and support from Local Trust – an organisation set up to deliver Big Local – to help residents spend the funding and increase their confidence, skills and know-how so they are better able to come together make positive changes in their areas in future.

Debbie Ladds, Chief Executive at Local Trust said: “We are delighted to have a further 50 communities to support. We look forward to helping residents identify what matters most to them and how, with the support of a range of locally trusted organisations and our partners, we can support them over at least ten years make their areas even better places to live. The passion and commitment that residents in existing Big Local areas are showing is inspirational. By enabling residents to make decisions and take control of the funding we believe Big Local can achieve lasting change in their communities.”

The 50 areas that have been allocated their £1m through Big Local today include the village of Lynemouth in South East Northumberland, which has seen a significant decline in traditional industries such as mining and recently saw over 500 jobs lost through the closure of a local factory; and the Bourne estate on the east side of Poole – which although located in the same town as the exclusive Sandbanks, has a large proportion of council, housing association owned and privately rented accommodation, and high levels of anti-social behaviour.

They join 100 communities across the country that have previously been earmarked for funding and are already working together on plans to spend their £1m.

People in the Leigh West area of Wigan 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 tradespeople and profits from the lets will be reinvested in the community.


Meanwhile in Cornwall residents in the Par Bay Big Local area, which covers areas of St Blaise, Par and Tywardreath, and is adjacent to the Eden project, are seeking to change the legacy of disadvantage and unemployment left by the rapid decline of the area’s once thriving clay industry. The community want to improve the environment and create better recreational facilities, particularly for young people, and have already begun a small grants scheme, awarding money to community projects including a sensory garden at a local school and a skate park.

Residents in North West Ipswich plan to use part of their funding to tackle the issue of doorstep lending, which is a significant problem for the area. Working in partnership with local organisations including the local credit union, they want to provide the community with greater access to alternative, reputable, value for money services as well as increase the community’s financial awareness.
For a list of the 50 new Big Local areas announced today, visit: http://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/press_final_list.xls, or for a list of the 100 areas already benefiting from the scheme visit: http://www.localtrust.org.uk/big-local/areas/

Further Information

Big Lottery Fund Press Office: 020 7211 1888
Out of hours media contact: 07867 500 572
Full details of the Big Lottery Fund programmes and grant awards are available on the website: www.biglotteryfund.org.uk
Ask BIG a question here: https://ask.biglotteryfund.org.uk
Follow BIG on Twitter: www.twitter.com/BigLotteryFund #BIGlf
Find BIG on facebook: www.facebook.com/BigLotteryFund

Notes to Editors

• Big Local, a £200m investment, was launched by the Big Lottery Fund in July 2010 to support 150 small urban and rural communities to come together to make their areas even better places to live.

• Managed by Local Trust, Big Local is targeting areas that may not have been successful in gaining funding and resources in the past. Each Big Local area is receiving at least £1m Lottery funding over the next 10 years, along with support, training, and networking opportunities, to help residents develop plans to improve their area and empower them to find solutions that work for their communities. More information on Big Local is available at http://www.localtrust.org.uk/

• Local Trust, a company limited by guarantee with company number 07833396 and charity, number 1147511. Local Trust is the corporate trustee of Big Local Trust, a charitable trust with charity number 1145916 established by the Big Lottery Fund and Local Trust to fund Big Local. Local Trust works closely with Big Local areas and partner organisations to support residents to help them make best use of Big Local and their funding. For enquiries about Local Trust or Big Local please call 020 7812 5456 or email: info@localtrust.org.uk

• The Big Lottery Fund (BIG), the largest distributor of National Lottery good cause funding, is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised for good causes by the National Lottery.

• BIG is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since its inception in June 2004 BIG has awarded close to £6 bn. The Fund was formally established by Parliament on 1 December 2006.

• Since the National Lottery began in 1994, 28p from every pound spent by the public has gone to good causes. As a result, over £29 billion has now been raised and more than 383,000 grants awarded across arts, sport, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.