Elect chairperson to allocate Devonshire’s £1 million grant

Janet Dubery SUS-151016-103348001
Janet Dubery SUS-151016-103348001

Fresh elections will appoint a new resident-led team to steer the allocation of the £1 million Lottery cash grant in Devonshire West.

The Big Local project will have its AGM on Tuesday November 24 and nominations are being taken now.

Jane Dubery (pictured) is the retiring chair of the group.

She said, “The absolute heart of the Big Local project is that it is local people who make the decisions. We’re always looking for ideas and input from everyone, but the money is invested by an elected body that has to have a resident majority.”

The Devonshire West area of Eastbourne was selected for the Big Local opportunity back in 2013 because it was thought to be a deprived area.

Residents and local organisations were asked to give their views and get involved by suggesting groups and projects which could benefit from a share of the cash.

Devonshire West was one of six areas in the south east to win cash as part of a Forgotten Communities scheme, which aims to transform areas with a slice of a £200 million budget.

Residents are now currently deciding how the money is spent in the ward and grants are being announced it phases.

The area was originally chosen by the lottery because it was though to have been overlooked for investment in the past.

Areas are chosen for a range of reasons including a decline of industry to high levels of unemployment and crime, or a pressing need for new support services or activities.

Sixteen different projects have had Big Local funding this year, including youth football, cookery for over 65s, employment workshops and ukulele lessons.

There was also money towards work at three iconic Devonshire West buildings – Leaf Hall, The Royal Hippodrome and Brodie Hall.

Kids’ cricket, community toilets and a winter street party were just three of the latest projects to receive money from the Devonshire West Lottery £1 million. Cheques for the latest groups were handed presented last month.

Jane added, “My new personal favourite grant is the toilet scheme, getting local businesses to sign up to let people use their facilities without feeling obliged to buy anything.

“It’s even going to employ a local person.”

To nominate for the chairperson election next month, fill in a form which can be found at www.devonshirewestbiglocal.org.uk .

It must be submitted by Friday November 6.

The AGM will be at Devonshire Children’s Centre from 6pm on Tuesday November 6.

It is a legal requirement that at least 51 per cent of the board are residents.

People with other local connections can also stand, for instance, people who work in the area or are involved with local groups.

To find out more about the project and the Devonshire groups and projects which have already received funding visit www.devon shirewestbiglocal.org.uk or find the Facebook page.

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