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£9 million programme will help Welsh communities take control of their assets

The Big Lottery Fund (The Fund) yesterday announced that it is launching a new round of funding for its £9 million Community Asset Transfer 2 programme (CAT2) that is creating more sustainable communities in Wales by supporting asset transfer.

Hundreds of people are expected to attended events around Wales this week for the launch of the latest funding. It aims to provide both capital and revenue funding to support the transfer of assets, such as land and buildings to community ownership. The assets can be transferred from individuals, the public or private sector.

Projects can apply for grants between £300,000 and £1,150,000 with money being used to help community groups to regenerate and reinvigorate the assets and develop manage and sustain them to improve their livelihoods and neighbourhoods. Through this programme, groups will be encouraged to use the asset to generate multiple income streams and provide quality services and amenities.

The CAT2 programme follows the success of the first Community Asset Transfer (CAT) programme which was launched in 2010. Through further consultation, The Fund discovered a continued need for this kind of programme for communities in Wales.

Rob Pickford, Big Lottery Fund Wales Committee member and Chair of the CAT2 programme committee said: “This programme is helping Welsh communities to become stronger and more sustainable by assisting them to obtain and develop assets and improve where they live. By helping to transfer assets to enterprising organisations that actively involve and benefit the communities they serve, we are ultimately helping more people to benefit from their local community assets and also generating local income and employment.”

Big Lottery Fund Wales Director, John Rose, said: “The CAT programme was a huge success empowering communities across Wales to use buildings and land to suit their needs. We’ve taken the learning from CAT and built upon it to develop CAT2 into a programme that meets the needs of communities in Wales.

“The CAT2 programme aims to create more sustainable communities; supporting asset transfer to enterprising organisations that actively involve and benefit the communities they serve. It is about improving services and facilities for communities in Wales that are sustainable.”

Towy Community Church in Carmarthenshire received a grant £798,202 to transform the former cheese-packing plant in Johnstown, Carmarthen into a multipurpose facility. The Xcel project has houses a state-of-the-art bowling alley that provides long term sustainability for the building as well as funding for two community projects: a low-cost furniture recycling facilities as well as a food bank that both support people in need.

Paul Griffiths, Xcel Centre Manager said: “The Xcel Project started as an idea just over six years ago with Towy Community Church’s vision to help the people of Carmarthenshire through ventures such as a foodbank and furniture project. By opening Xcel Bowl and using the proceeds, it allows us to offer these much needed services to people who find themselves in difficult financial or personal situations.

“Six years later with over 400,000 visitors to the centre and over 6000 helped in the community the success of the project would not have been possible without the funding from the Big Lottery Fund, along with their valuable support and advice which we continue to receive even into our third year of operation.”

The programme is now open for applications in English or Welsh. For further information about the CAT2 programme and how you can apply for funding, please visit www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/CAT2 call 029 2067 8200, textphone 0845 602 1659 or email cat@biglotteryfund.org.uk

Further Information:

Alexander Davies - Big Lottery Fund Press Office: 02920 678 236
Out of hours contact: Ben Payne 07980 914 898
Public Enquiries Line: 08454 102030 / Textphone:  0845 6021 659
Full details of the Big Lottery Fund programmes and grant awards are available at: www.biglotteryfund.org.uk
Follow BIG on Twitter: www.twitter.com/biglotterywalesGoes to different website
Find BIG on facebook: www.facebook.com/biglotteryfundwalesGoes to different website

Notes to Editors:

  • The Big Lottery Fund is responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by the National Lottery.
  • The Fund is committed to bringing real improvements to communities and the lives of people most in need and has been rolling out grants to health, education, environment and charitable causes across the UK. Since its inception in 2004 it has awarded close to £6bn.
  • Around 28% of National Lottery revenue is awarded to projects. Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £34 billion has been raised, and more than 450,000 grants awarded.
Channel website: https://www.biglotteryfund.org.uk/

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