THE COTSWOLDS AONB SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT FUND FOR 2015/16 IS NOW CLOSED.
APPLICATIONS TO THE 2016/17 SDF WILL BE ACCEPTED FROM 1ST FEBRUARY 2016. THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS IS MONDAY 21ST MARCH.
PROVIDING THAT THERE ARE FUNDS REMAINING THEN THERE WILL BE ANOTHER ROUND OF SDF GRANTS AWARDED IN OCTOBER. THE DEADLINE FOR APPLICATIONS TO THIS ROUND WILL BE MONDAY 3RD OCTOBER.
The Cotswolds AONB Sustainable Development Fund
The Cotswolds AONB Sustainable Development Fund is a regional grants scheme, available to individuals, groups or businesses that have ideas or projects that will improve the Cotswolds both now and in the future.
The Cotswolds AONB Sustainable Development Fund is coordinated and managed by the Cotswolds Conservation Board with resources provided by Defra.
What is Sustainable Development?
Achieving sustainable development will normally require working towards four, interconnected, goals:
- social progress which meets the needs of everyone
- protecting and enhancing the environment
- ensuring a diverse and prosperous rural economy (which supports the conservation and enhancement of the area's special qualities)
- the prudent use of natural resources.
How much is available?
Grants are usually awarded for 50% of project costs. However, this can be extended to 75% for projects led by non-profit making organizations. Grants ranging from a few hundred pounds up to £8,000 are available for the 2016/17 round of funding.
Who can apply?
Public, private, voluntary sector, individuals, businesses or community groups can apply. Individuals or businesses can only be beneficiaries where the project shows a clear benefit to the wider community.
What type of projects are eligible?
Projects must meet ALL of the essential criteria and at least ONE of the desirable criteria listed below. Examples of previous projects funded through the SDF scheme can be viewed on this page.
- Help deliver the Cotswolds Conservation Board’s Management Plan for the AONB.
This means that the project must address ONE or more of the following issues:
- Landscape and Geology;
- Historic Environment
- Sustainable Resources
- Living and Working in the Cotswolds
- Farming and Rural Land Use
- Forestry, Woodland and Trees
- Tourism, Recreation and Access
- Planning & Development
- further the purposes of the AONB to conserve and enhance natural beauty of the area.
- promote sustainable development
- have the demonstrable support or involvement of communities
- be complementary to key local, regional or national strategies
- funding cannot be retrospective
- demonstrate innovation or best practice
- link community, economy, culture and environment
- develop skills and “capacity building” in the community
- involve young people
- combat social exclusion and promote diversity
- bring organisations and people together to co-operate in tackling problems or promoting new ideas
- encourage links between rural and urban groups
- lever in contributions from other sources
- have little access to alternative public funding
- add value or new dimensions to existing sustainability projects
Applicants are initially encouraged to discuss their idea for a project with the Sustainable Development Officer to ensure the project is suitable for an SDF grant.
Who to contact
Below are a few of the projects we have been able to help with the Cotswolds AONB Sustainable Development Fund. Click on the links to find out more.
- Stroudco Food Hub, Stroud >
- Churn - Forging Ahead, Cirencester >
- Severn Wye Energy Agency - Fun in the Forest, Westonbirt, Slimbridge and Mitcheldean >