Over the years the National Park have had a number of grant initiatives allowing us to provide grant to support projects that help achieve National Park purposes and duties and to conserve the special qualities of the North York Moors. Some of our grant schemes tend to be targeted which means we usually approach the land manager and offer the grant (for instance, to enhance habitat connectivity), and others are open to application and awarded through a competitive process.
So at the beginning of a new financial year with a new round of grants available, it’s these schemes, the ones generally open to application, which are described below.
Our Traditional Boundary Scheme provides grant assistance (up to a maximum of £2,000 per holding per year) towards the cost of rebuilding drystone walls* and planting/restoring hedgerows. Traditional field boundaries are an important cultural element and landscape feature of the North York Moors. They also act as effective wildlife corridors. For more information – contact us.
There are lots of historic buildings in the National Park which are of great value both in terms of the landscape and cultural heritage, so we want to help ensure that as many as possible are kept in good repair. Around 3,000 buildings are specifically listed for their special architectural or historic interest. Historic Building Grants are available for repairs to Listed Buildings on the Authority’s “at risk” register. Grants are 50% of the cost of eligible works, up to a maximum of £7,500.
There are also 42 Conservation Areas in the National Park. These are areas within villages which have been designated because they are of particular historic or architectural importance. Conservation Area Enhancement Grants are available for re-instating lost architectural features such as windows and doors and using traditional roofing materials on historic buildings, within Conservation Areas. Grants will be 50% of the cost of eligible works, up to £1,500 per project.
For more information on either of these two Building Conservation grants – see here.
Our Local Distinctiveness & Tourism Fund aims to raise the profile of the North York Moors and promote its local distinctiveness. Grants are awarded to projects in the National Park area and surroundings which increase awareness of the North York Moors brand. Ideas need to utilise the area’s local distinctiveness and at the same time ensuring that any increase in visitors has no adverse impacts. For more information – see here.
We’ve also got our Community Grant offering grant of up to £3,500 (up to 70% of total project costs) to local community groups for small scale projects which meet one of the following priorities:
- environmental benefits e.g. recycling project or wildlife habitat improvements;
- cultural heritage and local history conservation e.g. restoring a village monument or archiving data;
- community facility improvements e.g. disabled access for a community building or improvements to a play area.
Projects need to show clear community benefit and value for money. This particular grant has a short application window – for 2016/17 we need to receive applications by 30 June 2016. For more information – see here.
The Community Grant is now into its fourth year. We’ve assisted a variety of functional projects over that time, one of which was the setting up of the Farndale Film Club by providing grant towards the purchase of equipment. We’re very grateful to the Club for the following report on its first year which shows just how beneficial local community projects can be with just a little grant assistance.
Farndale Village Hall Report for North York Moors National Park
Grant awarded summer 2014 for Film Club equipment and costs – £2,791.60
The Village Hall committee were very pleased to be awarded the grant to enable us to start our own community Film Club. The equipment and licences were bought in the early part of 2015, and installed by a community member with technical, IT and audio-visual expertise, and one of our trustees who is a qualified electrician and computer expert.
Our first screening was on the 1st May 2015. The film was ‘What we did on our holidays’ – a British comedy, which was a real success. We had 24 people attending, and had organised refreshments, crisps and chocolate bars. Feedback from attendees was excellent. The blackout blinds worked really well in summer to keep the hall dark. The sound system was great, and the big screen made it feel as though you really were at the cinema!
We decided to hold monthly screenings. Information about the screenings is given in our member’s community newsletter, on an email circular, and on posters inside the hall. Members are regularly asked what films they might want to see and all suggestions are welcome.
We have had a wide range so far of films, including comedies, a western and recent films like Gravity and The Imitation Game. We have held eight general monthly film nights for members, which have had 142 individual attendances.
We also held a screening of a new independent film ‘Addicted to Sheep’ in October. This was a licensed film and we were able to publicise and promote the screening, and charge for attendance. We decided to charge £3.00, really just to cover the costs of the film (£150). We also sold ice creams, snacks and drinks. Overall at this film, we had 60 people attending, and contributed over £100 towards our 1st year costs. Everyone who came said they had had a really good evening.
The Farndale Kids Club is also taking advantage of the equipment, and so far have shown three films – ‘Paddington’ in June; ‘Hotel Transylvania’ at a Halloween party in October, and ‘Elf’ in December. The children had a brilliant time. At these films we had overall attendance of 71. The children made themselves comfortable on rugs and cushions on the floor, and had ice creams and snacks.
So overall, we have held three films for the Kids Club, eight films for the usual members club, and held an ‘open’ screening. Overall attendance of the 12 films has been 273.
In the summer, we made another grant application to the Two Ridings Community Foundation – Grassroots Fund towards funding for some more comfortable seating, and were pleased to have the grant agreed in September. We have since purchased 30 new upholstered and padded chairs for use at the film club, and so far members have been very pleased with them. They are a big improvement on the old plastic chairs we had.
Since we started, we have covered the overall equipment and first year’s costs of the Film Club – largely through your grant, also the income from our recycling Bags Collection, from members’ donations, and through snacks and soft drinks donations at the screenings.
All the people who have so far come to the Farndale Film Club and Kids Film Club have been very positive about having a local venue where they can see films. Comments have been made about how good it is not to have to travel miles to see films, and also how nice it is to spend time with neighbours and friends in a different arena. For some of us, it is the only time we have been to a cinema in many years! Thank you again for your generous grant, it is much appreciated by all.
Gill Aconley, Committee Member, Farndale Village Hall
James Thurtell, Chairman, Farndale Village Hall
*And talking of film, our Agri-Environment Team spent a few hours recently learning the basics of drystone walling in order to better understand this traditional craft. Here’s what happened…