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New community asset for Muir of Ord residents

October 23, 2014

Community ownership is alive and kicking as the people of Muir of Ord in Inverness celebrate a Growing Community Assets award. The Muir of Ord Hall & Facilities Company receives £1,156,957 to refurbish and extend the existing Old Tarradale School. This will provide a new community owned facility offering social and learning opportunities for 3,300 residents, as well as visitors to the village.

From the new hub, the Calman Trust will operate a café which will provide training and employment opportunities for disadvantaged young people. Plans for the building also include a heritage and information centre, an auditorium, IT facilities and meeting space for groups to socialise.

The Old Tarradale School will soon be transformed into an enterprising community hub

Speaking on behalf of the Board and Members of Muir of Ord Hall & Facilities Company, Ian Dempster, said: “We are absolutely thrilled that our application for funding has been successful. The new community hub will improve the appearance of the village centre and provide a focal point for community activities.  The Company are also delighted to be working in partnership with The Calman Trust who, in providing the cafe service in the new hub, will offer employment and employment training opportunities for local young people.

“It is very exciting and we hope the Hub will be seen as a ‘springboard’ for wider regeneration of the community. There is a wide range of excellent grassroots activity in the village and with a Community Development Worker, funded as part of the development, energy can be channelled to achieve improvements and increased opportunities for local people.”

Listen to Big Lottery Fund Scotland Chair Maureen McGinn explaining more about this Growing Community Assets award.

The Big Lottery Fund’s Growing Community Assets fund supports communities to take control and influence over their own future through the ownership of assets.  Find out more about Growing Community Assets.


Your burning questions – October 2014

October 22, 2014

Our Scotland Advice Team receive an average of 700 enquiries every month. We’re here to give advice and support to organisations before they apply for funding. Below are three of our most common questions asked recently.

Where can I get an end of grant report from?

These are now specific to each organisation so there isn’t a ‘generic’ one available. To receive your end of grant report, please contact your Funding Officer on 0141 242 1400 (press option 1).

Can we include supporting documents along with our application form?

As we receive a high amount of applications, unfortunately we are unable to consider supporting documents. Everything should be included within the application form.

There’s been changes to your funding this year. What funding of up to £10,000 is currently available?MB7H1815 1 250

We have three grants that can fund up to £10,000 (you might have heard them being called ‘small grants’). These are:

Awards for All (£500 to £10,000) – for community or sports projects

Communities and Families Fund (£250 to £10,000) – for improving pre-birth to eight years of age’s quality of life

Investing in Ideas (£500 to £10,000) – to test out a new idea or a new way of working

If you have any other questions about our funding, you can go to Ask BIG, where we give answers to other commonly asked questions.

Alternatively, if you can’t find your answer at Ask BIG, you can email us at

Outdoor play boost for inner city children

October 22, 2014

A young Glasgow mother of five has been speaking about the importance of outdoor play in keeping children on the ‘straight and narrow’ as PEEK – Possibilities for Each and Every Kid – announces plans to expand its ‘Lets Play’ project. The expansion has been made possible, thanks to an award of £605,775 from our Investing in Communities fund.

Thanks to today’s funding, PEEK will be able to employ eight new Play Rangers, as well as sessional staff, to deliver free and active outdoor play sessions in the north and east of Glasgow. This will see the project doubling in size to provide all year round play sessions for 1,800 children aged 5 to 12 and 120 young people aged 13 to 25.

Angela Morrison and Kyle Blair

Angela Morrison and her son Kyle

Angela Morrison, 27, has five children aged between 6 and 9 and has benefited from the services of PEEK as a child and as a mother. She said: “Growing up in the Gallowgate was tough. To this day there is still no community centre or playpark and all too often kids are getting caught up in gang fighting and drink and drugs. I don’t want these things for my children, which is why PEEK, and its outdoor play sessions, are so important for us as a family.  With five children, our house can be crazy at times and so it’s important that my kids get outside into the fresh air to play and release some of that energy.”

Through its play sessions PEEK uses pavements and the wider urban green space for its active play sessions, all the while ensuring that safety is their number one priority.

Angela continues: “One of my sons, Dean, has ADHD which means I can’t let him out without supervision, particularly as we live near a main road. Being able to watch him play safely with other children, with the support and encouragement of PEEK’s Play Rangers, gives me that piece of mind.


PPEK’s ‘Let’s Play project will enable more children to get outside and enjoy the fresh air

“As a parent I also see the physical and emotional benefits of these sessions for all of my children. Not only do they play better with other children but PEEK also allows us to spend more time together as a family. There really is a lack of opportunities in our area to help keep children on the straight and narrow so it’s great news that this additional Lottery money will extend these play sessions to more families like ours.”

PEEK Project Manager Melodie Crumlin, said: “Play is a fundamental part of childhood and is an end in itself, aside from any longer term benefits for children’s development and society in general.  We have introduced the idea of “urban play” by providing free play sessions loosely supervised by Street Play Rangers encouraging and helping to get local youngsters playing positively on the streets, building their confidence, building connections with their families and communities.”

This award was made under the Supporting 21st Century investment area of our Investing in Communities fund. If you have a similar project idea for funding visit the website for more details.


Have your say on the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill

October 14, 2014

Scottish Land FundThe Scottish Parliament’s Local Government and Regeneration Committee is seeking the views of Scottish communities as part of its scrutiny of the Community Empowerment (Scotland) Bill.

The Bill aims to empower communities to participate in local decision making, or to buy, lease, manage, occupy or use public sector land or buildings. It will also include a reform of the law on allotments, as well as putting community planning partnerships on a statutory basis and placing new duties on partner bodies.

Because of the Big Lottery Fund’s experience of running the Growing Community Assets and the Scottish Land Fund grant programmes, we have been closely following the development of the Bill and have provided a significant amount of evidence to both the Government and the Committee.

Now you have the chance to have your say.

The Committee’s community engagement events are taking place in Dumfries on 27 October and in Fort William on 24 November, and we would strongly encourage Scottish Land Fund and Growing Community Assets funded projects in those two areas, and indeed anyone with an interest in the community ownership of assets, to go along to give the Committee their views.

Further information about the events can be found on the Scottish Parliament website.

Ready, steady…Go-Ride Legacy Games!

October 2, 2014

Young people from across Scotland are being encouraged to cycle towards a healthier and more active lifestyle, thanks Awards for All Scotland funding. The Go-Ride Legacy Games is an exciting Scotland wide project encouraging young people to get involved in the sport of bike racing, building on the legacy of the Glasgow Commonwealth Games.

Young people taking part in the Go Ride Legacy

Young people taking part in the Go-Ride Legacy Games

The Scottish Cyclists Union received an award of £7,895 earlier this year to run the project which will include a series of local events all round the country culminating in three national events in Perthshire, Cumbernauld and Glasgow.

Regional Development Officer, Sophie Warburton, put together the Awards for All application.  She said: “In comparison to other funding applications I’ve worked on this one was pretty easy and I liked the simplicity of the application.  I especially liked the way it gave you the room to explain the project in your own words.”

Sophie continued: “Through this project we will be working with approximately 20 accredited Go-Ride Clubs across Scotland between now and November for them to deliver two events each. After that we are hoping to include participants from these events at our  National days in Highland Perthshire, Cumbernauld and Glasgow.”

“The aim of our project is to inspire young people under 16 who are already riding bikes to give bike racing a go and get that adrenaline rush from what an exciting and exhilarating experience it is.

“Without the Awards for All funding this whole thing wouldn’t have been possible as the event kit bags are the crucial part to making this project work. These bags will enable clubs across the country not only to run these events but also future events to promote bike racing and encourage young people in the sport for years to come.”

Lynne Munro, Head of Development at Scottish Cycling, added: “The Go-Ride Legacy Games 2014 are a fantastic opportunity for clubs to get involved and attract new members to their sessions.  Clubs now have access to a kit bag crammed full of useful and exciting resources and equipment for their riders to access our world class facilities here in Scotland. Young riders who are new to cycling will be able to develop the skills and confidence required to take part in events, under the guidance of our Scottish club coaches.”

You can find out more about the Go-Ride Legacy Games here.

If your group is looking for funding of up to £10,000 Awards for All could be for you. Visit the Awards for All Scotland website for more information.