Groups to receive grants as Big Local scheme gets under way

Enthusiastic gardeners at The Bridge Community Centre looking forward to a new polytunnel
Enthusiastic gardeners at The Bridge Community Centre looking forward to a new polytunnel

COMMUNITY groups in town are to receive grants totalling more than £5,000 as part of a national scheme.

Big Local is giving people a chance to say how they would like the money used to improve the place they live, work or play.

The first round of the small grants scheme is just the beginning as Big Local North East Hastings will see £1 million spent in the area over a 10-year period.

Grants have been awarded to groups including The Conservation Volunteers which received £350 to run training days for potential leaders for a series of weekly healthy walks around Ore. The free walks depart from the Ore Community Centre, in Old London Road, at 10.30am each Saturday.

Paula Hubens, healthy walks project officer, said: “It will help people get to know their local area, and is good for those who do like walking but maybe prefer not to walk on their own.” Anyone interested in leading walks or joining them can contact Paula on 07740 899559 or email

Local resident Dee Harvey has been awarded a £500 grant to enable her to launch Hastings Sewing Bee, with pilot sewing groups at Broomgrove Community Centre, Chiltern Drive, on April 30, 9.30am to 11.30am, and at The Bridge, in Priory Road, on May 1, 9.30am to 11.30am.

Dee said: “I am someone who has always sewn, and sewing has provided me with a great deal of pleasure.” She plans to teach basic sewing skills, and for participants to take on simple projects. To find out more contact Dee on 01424 447806 or email

Other recipients of funding include Ore Community Centre where a club for seniors is to be set up, while The Bridge Community Centre, in Priory Road, has received two grants totalling £1,000 towards a polytunnel for the community garden, and to help subsidise the cost of lunches for seniors.

Big Local is a nationwide programme that aims to bring funds to 150 areas of the UK where there is a high level of need.

The money comes from the Big Lottery Fund and the programme is being delivered by Local Trust.