£500 grants on offer for groups

Castle Dene Shopping Centre manager Mike Weston with members of the  Blackhall Community Drama Group Alyson Allday, Milly Tempest, Carol Scott, Catherine Hall, Sarah Teasdale, Francesca Hall and Hannah Teasdale. When he presented the group with a �500 cheque from the centre's community fund. Picture by FRANK REID

Castle Dene Shopping Centre manager Mike Weston with members of the Blackhall Community Drama Group Alyson Allday, Milly Tempest, Carol Scott, Catherine Hall, Sarah Teasdale, Francesca Hall and Hannah Teasdale. When he presented the group with a �500 cheque from the centre's community fund. Picture by FRANK REID

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PEOPLE have days left to apply for a grant aimed at helping recession-hit community groups.

Kind-hearted bosses at Castle Dene Shopping Centre, in Peterlee, are urging community groups to apply for a chunk of funding from their new grant scheme.

The community fund is designed to provide financial support to local community groups who have been struggling during the recession or may be suffering from funding cuts.

The fund was launched earlier this year and the winners of the first £500 cheque was the Blackhall Community Drama Group, which was given the cash in June.

It sees the centre give away up to a maximum of £500 every three months to groups and individuals, which will come as a boost in the wake of Government budget cuts.

The grant is open to any local groups, ranging from sports clubs, theatre groups and music groups to clubs for the elderly, disabled and even playgroups.

Shopping centre manager Mike Weston said: “We are now ready to accept applications for the second round of our Dene Community Fund.

“The fund is open up to all local groups and all we are asking in return is for these groups to put forward a good case as to why they deserve the support and then prove that they will spend the money wisely.”

All interested organisations have to do is fill in a short application form explaining why they deserve the support and describing what they intend to do with the money.

The winners of the first grant say it will make a huge difference.

Carol Scott, from Blackhall Community Drama Group, said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive this grant. The money is to be used to purchase a new mixer/sound system which will replace the old system.

“This will enable us to rehearse and perform throughout the year.”

Anyone wanting to apply will need to fill out a short application form explaining why they deserve the support and their intentions for the money.

If you would like to apply, contact Lisa O’Hanlon on email at lo@the-enterprise-company.co.uk

Applications need to be in by Friday.