MSP urges Lanarkshire groups to bid for share of £150m community ownership fund


Community groups in Lanarkshire are invited to submit bids to the UK Government’s Community Ownership Fund.

MSP for Central Scotland, Graham Simpson, is calling on local groups to get involved after the UK government opened the second round of the £150million fund.

The fund can enable community groups to take control of pubs, music venues, sports facilities, historic buildings and other facilities for the benefit of the public, which might otherwise be lost forever.

The first round of the UK government fund saw six groups in Scotland share more than £1.2million in funding.

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Now Mr Simpson has called on community groups to come together to bid for funding to help support the buildings that matter most to them in Lanarkshire.

The fund’s eligibility criteria have also been expanded, meaning more groups across the region can apply.

Graham Simpson MSP said: “It is welcome to see this UK government fund open again.

“The first round of funding provided significant funds to help save much-loved assets across Scotland and I would encourage community groups in Lanarkshire to apply for this.

“If voters know of a facility they don’t want to lose from the community, the UK government’s Community Ownership Fund could help protect it.

“Successful deals can allow community assets to thrive again and help accelerate economic recovery in the region.

“The Community Ownership Fund is just one example of how the UK government is directly investing in and supporting communities in Lanarkshire.”

The fund has been updated to broaden the eligibility criteria, including removing the requirement that assets have been used within the last five years and will now consider any asset that has had prior community use, massively expanding the eligible projects.

Applicants who have at least a 15-year lease on an asset would now also be considered for funding. Previously, leases were limited to a minimum of 25 years.

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