Applications open for green spaces funding worth £500,000 for community projects in East Devon, Exmouth and Honiton

Funding of half a million pounds is available for ‘green’ community spaces in East Devon, Exmouth and Honiton.

East Devon Reporter

National Grid Electricity Distribution has announced a new Green Spaces Fund – with £500,000 to support areas of East Devon.

The aim of the fund is to boost communities, encourage wildlife, improve air quality, reduce noise and a host of other benefits.

Applications are invited from community organisations and projects that encourage volunteering. The closing date is Friday, May 12.

The fund will award grants of up to £2,000 for unregistered organisations. Registered charities and eligible non-profit companies can apply for up to £10,000.

Jill Russell, environment manager at National Grid, said: “We’re committed to empowering communities and promoting sustainability across our region.

“The launch of the Green Spaces Community Fund is a testament to this commitment and we’re excited to support grassroots organisations to create green spaces that benefit everyone.

“We believe that access to green spaces is essential for the wellbeing of both individuals and communities, and we look forward to seeing the positive impact of this initiative on our communities.”

Funding could be made available in East Devon, Exmouth and Honiton for projects such as:

  • Planting spaces and new allotment creation in existing green spaces
  • Bee banks, bird/bat boxes, wildflowers, ponds, trees, hedges, and other projects to improve biodiversity
  • Development of unused land into green spaces
  • Gardening workshops and allotment activities to bring vulnerable members of the community into green spaces, including sensory or mindfulness garden creation
  • Access pathways, ramps and seating in in parkland or nature reserves
  • Redevelopment of existing green spaces to encourage greater community use
  • Forest school education sessions for young people or craft workshops in nature
  • Innovative approaches to create or develop green spaces for public enjoyment

The Green Spaces project is the latest phase of the Community Matters Fund run by National Grid Electricity Distribution.

The fund – paid for entirely by shareholders – has awarded £4.3 million to eligible organisations since 2021.

A National Grid spokesman said: “Applications are now open for a new Green Spaces Fund which will support communities across East Devon to enhance their local environment and encourage more people to make the most of their green spaces.

“The aim of the fund is to support the development of green spaces to bring communities together, encourage more wildlife and biodiversity, improve air quality and reduce noise, as well as delivering health benefits, and creating employment and volunteering opportunities.

“Applications are welcome from community organisations of all kinds, particularly those supporting vulnerable groups to overcome barriers to accessing green spaces.

“Projects that create volunteering opportunities for members of the local community are also encouraged to apply.”