UK Community Renewal Fund
The UK government announced the one-year UK Community Renewal Fund (UKCRF) at the March 2021 spending review. The £220 million UK – wide fund will help local areas prepare for the launch of the UK Shared Prosperity Fund due to be announced in 2022.
The UKCRF aims to support people and communities most in need across the UK to pilot new approaches to move away from the EU Structural Funds and prepare for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
The UKCRF will finance:
• Investment in skills
• Investment for local business
• Investment in communities and place
• Supporting people into employment
Applications to the UKCRF will be co-ordinated by local authorities across the UK. Neath Port Talbot Council will co-ordinate the submission of applications for the Neath Port Talbot area. The Council will then appraise bids and shortlist them before submitting the shortlisted bids to the Ministry for Housing Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) for assessment and a funding decision. All councils must submit their shortlisted bids to MHCLG by noon on 18 June 2021.
The UK government has expressed a preference for applications to be circa £500,000. The shortlist of prioritised bids from a local authority area may not exceed £3 million in value. The UKCRF will primarily fund running costs (90%) rather than capital investment. All projects must complete activity by the end of March 2022.
Bids for funding may be made by any legally constituted organisation delivering an appropriate service. Bids cannot be submitted for projects that benefit a single entity (for example a single business) – there must be evidence of wider impact for multiple individuals, businesses or other organisations.
The UK government has published a UKCRF Prospectus, fund guidance and a standard application form which is available on the UK government website: UK Community Renewal Fund.
Neath Port Talbot Council recommends that any interested parties review the UKCRF information currently available on the UK government website and start considering potential applications they may wish to make.
Neath Port Talbot Council will launch the call for applications to the UKCRF in mid-April with applications to be submitted mid-May (dates will be confirmed when the call for applications is launched).