The centre of Boston is one of 50 ‘forgotten’ parts of the country that will be handed a £1 million boost from lottery funding.
The town has been selected to form part of the Big Lottery Fund’s Big Local programme, where residents will decide how to spend funding on improving their own areas.
The town joins former mining town’s and deprived parts of London which the lottery says have been previously overlooked for investment and that have a big need for a boost.
Residents must come together to do the best they can with their £1 million, which can be used on anything from training and employment schemes, to tackling anti-social behaviour, creating new community facilities or providing more activities for young people.
Nat Sloane, Big Lottery Fund’s England Chair, explains: “These areas have for many years been overlooked and have missed out on vital funding and resources – they have people who are high on aspiration but until now have been low on opportunity.
“Through our long-term funding, commitment, training and support over at least the next ten years, we will redress that balance; giving them the power, confidence and ability to spend this funding in the ways that matter most to their community.
“This is the Lottery’s largest ever investment in community-led regeneration. This kind of investment is powerful – it goes way beyond annual budgetary cycles of local authorities or the parliamentary terms of well-intentioned governments. It is the kind of investment that is going to help people in these areas achieve lasting, meaningful change, for their children and generations to come.”
As well as funding for improvements, each area will receive training and support from Local Trust – an organisation set up to deliver Big Local – to help residents spend the funding and increase their confidence, skills and know-how so they are better able to come together make positive changes in their areas in future.
Debbie Ladds, Chief Executive at Local Trust said: “We are delighted to have a further 50 communities to support. We look forward to helping residents identify what matters most to them and how, with the support of a range of locally trusted organisations and our partners, we can support them over at least ten years make their areas even better places to live.
“The passion and commitment that residents in existing Big Local areas are showing is inspirational. By enabling residents to make decisions and take control of the funding we believe Big Local can achieve lasting change in their communities.”
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