Local schemes looking for boost from Social Investment Fund

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A NUMBER of local schemes are looking to take full advantage of government funding through the Social Investment Fund.

A total of £80 million has been allocated to the fund and this will money will be delivered across Northern Ireland in steering groups for each ‘zone’.

Teams of consultants have been engaged by the OFMDFM to help in preparing strategic actions plans for Each Zone.

Antrim falls into the Northern Zone, this action plan is current being prepared and is to contain a maximum of 10 projects.

At last Tuesday’s meeting of Antrim Council’s Development and Leisure Committee, councillors heard that three applications from Antrim have been put forward - Allen Park Nature Trail, Crumlin Recreational Facility and Randalstown Recreational Facility.

Geraldine Girvan, Director of Development and Leisure Services, explained: “If any should be successful and receive additional funding, then this would reduce the council’s contribution. This scheme is very new but at least we have made a submission.”

It was also confirmed that the Allen Park scheme would not have met the criteria.

A draft action plan for the Northern Zone is expected by December 31 and all plans are to be assessed by the end of March 2013.

A further report will be brought back to the council once the outcome of the strategic planning process is known.

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