The UK Community Renewal Fund (UKCRF) has been introduced by the UK Government for 2021/22 to support people and communities most in need across the UK.
What is the UKCRF?
The UKCRF will provide £220 million of additional funding to support people and communities most in need. It also intends to help the UK move smoothly away from the EU structural fund programme and is a pilot programme to prepare for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.
The fund is seeking to support “innovative responses to local challenges and local needs across the UK, spanning urban, rural and coastal areas. UKCRF will test greater integration of types of interventions and greater flexibility between investment themes. This includes removing barriers that people face in accessing skills and labour market opportunities, building the evidence base for future interventions and exploring the viability of new ideas.”
The West of England Combined Authority (WECA) will be collating bids into this Government fund, as lead authority for the West of England. This includes the Bath & North East Somerset, Bristol and South Gloucestershire area.
As lead authority for the fund in the region, WECA is required to gather applications from Local Authorities, Universities, Colleges, Third Sector organisations and others.
Eligible projects must fall within the priority themes of:
- Investment in Skills
- Investment in Local Business
- Investment in Community and Place
- Supporting people into employment
Details on assessment criteria can be found in section 6 of the prospectus.
There will be no ringfences applied across these themes. 90% of funding available through the UKCRF is revenue funding, with a small amount of capital funding.
Bids cannot be submitted for projects that benefit a single entity (for example a single business) and applicants are encouraged to maximise impact and deliverability through larger projects (£500,000+) where this is possible.
How do I apply?
All prospective applicants should read section 5.2 of the prospectus before applying.
Bid must be submitted using the UK Community Renewal Application Fund Application Form.
The deadline for bids is 23:59 on Friday 21 May 2021 and must be submitted using the email address: email@example.com
Applicants should use “UK Community Renewal Fund Application [Organisation name]” in the subject heading of their emails.
Bids submitted in any other format will not be accepted.
WECA will appraise all applications and produce a shortlist of projects up to a maximum of £3 million per place for submission to the UK government. The UK government will select projects in line with the selection criteria set out in the Community Renewal Fund Prospectus.