Communities encouraged to reap rewards of the New Homes Bonus

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Nearly every local community across South Northamptonshire has the opportunity to apply for grant funding through the New Homes Bonus (NHB) from South Northamptonshire Council (SNC).

The NHB is awarded to communities which have experienced housing growth in order to mitigate the impact of the expansion, and has contributed to a wide range of projects including village and sports club improvements, new play equipment and community events.

In total, just under £1.5 million in NHB funding has been allocated to 73 out of 78 hamlets, villages and towns in South Northamptonshire since the scheme started.

Paul Sutton, SNC's chief finance officer, said: "The New Homes Bonus can offer a real boost to communities, whether they're looking to host an event to bring everyone together, or wanting to improve a local facility.

"This funding is there to enrich and improve the local areas where development has occurred, and I would encourage residents within those communities where funding has been granted, to take positive action and think carefully about where that money would be best spent."

NHB grants in the last financial year include; £50,000 to Potterspury Parish Council for a skate park and multi-use games area, £1,197 to Wappenham Parish Council for a defibrillator, and £581 to Deanshanger Athletic FC for training goal posts.

Each community has a ring-fenced fund, depending on the amount of development that has taken place. For areas without any NHB funding allocation, Community Development Grants are still available.

SNC, in partnership with South Northants Volunteer Bureau (SNVB), Daventry District Council and Daventry Volunteer Centre, is also hosting a Funding Fair at Towcester Racecourse on Tuesday, 6 June.

There will be presentations on grant funding available and the grants officer from SNC, Katie Arnold, will be on hand to answer any questions along with many local and national funders.

Grants for more than £1,000 are approved by a Community Funding Panel which meets quarterly.

Anyone wishing to submit an NHB grant application to the July Community Funding Panel should email them to grants@southnorthants.gov.uk by Wednesday, 31 May 2017.