Burslem North Community First Panel Funding

Does your group have a project in need of funding? Will it address any of the following local issues?

  • Anti-social behaviour and social isolation, by increasing the range of activities available at night.
  • Improving the health of all inhabitants of the ward.
  • Bringing different communities within the ward closer together, addressing community cohesion.

If your answer is YES, then your project could be put forward for a Community First award of between £250 and £2,500. If you would like to apply, then you will need to complete and return the following form: Community First Funding Proposal Form – Burslem North (MS Word format, 328kb download).

Please be aware that it may not be possible to fund all projects. Some projects may only receive part funding. Projects must benefit and involve local people in the former Burslem North electoral ward. If you are not sure whether your project qualifies, please get in touch using the details below. There’s a helpful map of the ward here.

You can see what projects the Burslem North Community First Panel has supported previously here.

How can I find out more, meet the panel, or obtain a hard copy of the application form?

  • Pick up an application form. Available from the enquiries desk at Haywood Community Library or the office at Burslem School of Art.
  • Speak to the council’s Local Matters team: call Mike Lockett on 07765 680707 for more advice (n.b. Local Matters have kindly offered to help community groups to apply for funding; however, Community First is NOT a council-led programme).
  • Come and see us! Vale Park Community Initiative (which includes Burslem North Community First Panel) usually meets at 10am on the last Wednesday of the month (except December), at Haywood Engineering College – it’s best to enter via the Community Library on Haywood Road. NB, please email in advance to make sure the meeting has not been rescheduled.We look forward to hearing from you! 


Who sits on Burslem North Community First Panel?

Burslem North Community First Panel is a project of Vale Park Community Initiative (VPCI), which is a partnership of groups and organisations working in the communities around Vale Park, the home of Port Vale Football Club. The current members are:

  • Clare White, who lives and works in Burslem, and is Chair of Burslem and Middleport Local Forum.
  • Tom Pine who is a resident of Burslem North, and was formerly Park Liaison Officer for Burslem Park.
  • Neil Dawson, a resident of Burslem North who is active within a number of groups and charities in Stoke-on-Trent.
  • Mike Lockett, Local Matters Officer for Stoke-on-Trent City Council.
  • Jo Stanway, who works for Burslem Regeneration Company.
  • Alan Dutton, ward councillor and Board Member of Burslem Regeneration Company.
  • Joy Garner, ward councillor and Governor at Moorpark Junior School

We are looking for new panel members to increase and improve community representation. Panel members must live or work (paid or voluntarily) in the former Burslem North Ward. Please get in touch if you would like to become a panel member: burslemnorthcfpanel@gmail.com

The detailed bit – What is Community First?
In general, Community First aims to encourage people in the eligible wards to:
•       Support the social action projects they need, improving the quality of life for themselves and others in their neighbourhood .
•       Participate in relevant local decision making, promoting a sense of ownership not only of problems but of local opportunities and resources.
•       Start more neighbourhood groups and revitalise existing groups.
•       Work with businesses, charities and public authorities, encouraging people to help others and themselves to improve the quality of life locally.
•       Introduce a new approach to funding projects – leveraging time, money and other resources – helping neighbourhoods play a leading role in regenerating their area.
Can my group apply for Community First Funding?
To receive Community First funding any group or organisation must:
•       be a not-for-profit, third sector voluntary or community group
•       be connected with and/or meeting the needs of the local community
•       have a bank account with 2 signatories OR nominate an organisation which has a bank account with 2 signatories to hold funds on its behalf
•       have a governing document that has as a minimum the name, aim/purpose, objects, a dissolution clause for the organisation, a list of Trustees/Committee members, and Trustees/Committee member signatures. New groups are not required to have this in place, but should agree to develop one.
•       provide evidence of significant community participation in their application through the group’s matched element to the project
•       show that their project is in line with the priorities identified for the ward
Examples of what can be funded are:
•       the purchase of equipment, like a computer, oven, furniture
•       the costs of putting on a local event or workshop
•       training for volunteers
•       additional activities to expand an existing funded project
•       activities that support community activity
•       activities that meet an identified need in the local community
•       funding to support an organisation to achieve a quality or other standard relevant to their activities.
Community First cannot fund the following:
•       statutory organisations, such as Local Authorities, schools and the Police Force
•       arms length public sector organisations that are controlled wholly or in part by, for example, a Local Authority, a Primary Care Trust or agencies of these
•       any party political activity
•       commercial ventures
•       organisations working in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, or those that primarily benefit communities overseas in Europe or elsewhere. The grants must be used for activity within local communities in England.
•       certain types of activities that support Asylum Seeker groups. This funding cannot be used for the provision of services to asylum seekers when those services are inconsistent with immigration laws or Home Office policy. For the purposes of this fund, an ‘asylum seeker’ means a person who has brought an asylum or human rights claim in the UK which has not yet been determined by either the Secretary of State or, as applicable, any relevant appellate authorities. It also includes a person who is a dependant on such a claim. Further information can be found at: http://www.ind.homeoffice.gov.uk
Do I need Match Funding?
Yes – although this does not always have to be a cash contribution. The matched element should principally be in volunteer time but can also be donated cash, goods and services.
How does the funding process work?
What is the process for identifying the projects that will be funded?
Burslem North Community First Panel recommends projects for funding by CDF, in line with our Community Plan (PDF, 1.24MB). If CDF is satisfied with the Panel recommendations, it will release funding to recommended groups.
The process is based on recommendations from CDF:-
1.      Local groups or organisations within the ward can contact the panel with requests for funding. Local groups or organisations will be able to look on the panel website to get an indication of priorities for funding within the ward and determine whether their project fits in with these priorities. An application form is available to download (MS Word, 328kb), but hard copies are also available from Burslem School of Art and Haywood Community Library.
2.      The panel can also approach specific organisations or groups of organisations to see if they are interested in delivering a project which would address one or more of the panel priorities.
Selecting proposals for funding
When selecting proposals for funding, CDF advises Community First Panels to consider the following questions:
i.      Does the project address one or more of the local priorities the panel has set? (These are listed on the application form and may change in future, in response to local needs – see our Community Plan – PDF, 1.24MB)
ii.     Is the timetable for delivery achievable?
iii.    Will the project result in an improvement in the quality of life or opportunities for local people?
iv.     What are the possibilities for the participation of local people and volunteers in delivering the project?
v.      What benefits to the neighbourhood will result from the project?
vi.     Do the project costs represent good value for money?
Minutes of Vale Park Community Initiative and Burslem North Community First Panel
  1. Community First in Burslem North « Visit Burslem
  2. Creative Stoke update, 13th June 2012 « Creative Stoke newsfeed
  3. Projects supported by Burslem North Community First Panel « Visit Burslem

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