Grant Awarding Policy and Procedure
Policy Adopted May 2023. Next Review Date May 2024
Introduction to policy
A grant is any payment or gift made by the Parish Council to an organisation for a specific purpose that will benefit the Parish, or residents of the Parish, and which is not directly controlled or administered by the Parish Council. The law requires that Section 137 grants must be ‘in the interests of or the direct benefit to the area or its inhabitants, or part of it, or some of it’ and ‘the direct benefit should be commensurate with expenditure’. Similar considerations will apply when considering applications for other grants.
The Parish Council awards grants, at its absolute discretion, to organisations which can demonstrate a clear need for financial support to achieve an objective which will benefit the Parish by:
providing a service
- enhancing the quality of life
- improving the environment
- promoting Bellingham Parish in a positive way.
The Parish Council will NOT award grants to:
- commercial organisations
- purposes for which there is a statutory duty upon other local or central government departments to fund or provide
- local groups where fund-raising is sent to a central HQ for redistribution
- political parties
- religious organisations (unless for a person which does not discriminate on the grounds of belief).
This list is not exclusive and may be added to at the council’s discretion.
The Parish Council will consider grant payments to individuals as long as there is a clear benefit to Bellingham Parish.
Grants will not be made retrospectively. Grant funds are required to be used within 60 days of the application date.
Application forms can be found on the Parish Council website.
Completed application forms can be emailed or posted to the Parish Clerk, or submitted in person at a Parish Council meeting.
All grants awarded will be subject to a regular report back to Bellingham Parish Council as to the progress/community benefit.
Any grant request received in writing up to the Wednesday the week before a parish council meeting will be decided upon at that months meeting. If a grant is requested in person or received after the Wednesday before a meeting, a decision will not be made until the following month’s Parish Council meeting. This ensures the grant request is publicised on the agenda for that meeting.
Each application will be assessed on its own merits. The Parish Council may make the award of any grant or subsidy subject to such additional conditions and requirements as it sees fit. The Parish Council reserves the right to refuse any grant application which it deems to be inappropriate, or against the objectives/best interests of the Parish.
Nothing contained herein shall prevent the Parish Council from exercising its existing duty or power in response of providing financial assistance or grants to local or national organisations under the provisions of the Local Government Act 1972, Section 137.
A grant awarded must be used for the purposes stated during the application process. If the organisation is unable to use any or part of the grant, then all monies, or unexpended part of such monies, must be returned to the Parish Council.
The Parish Council may request proof of expenditure. Failure to provide proof on request may lead to the Parish Council recovering grant monies.
For capital purchases the Parish Council reserves the right to buy and supply the goods rather than providing a cash payment.
Where a grant is used to buy equipment, the Parish Council requires that it be insured and maintained at the expense of the user.
Organisations receiving grants are required to advise their users/members that the grant has been received from Bellingham Parish Council.
In order to promote transparency for funding we require five photographs of the supplied items being used/event taking place to be sent to us within thirty days of the event or receipt of goods. We may use these photographs on our website and social media channels as examples of successful applications.