Green light for Bristol 2015 Strategic Grants

Bristol 2015 awards more than £1.35 million in grants to 32 projects across the city. It's the largest of three funding streams established by Bristol 2015 to promote and deliver the city’s year as European Green Capital.

Photo: Ape Project Bike Exchange
Christmas has arrived a day early for 28 not-for-profit organisations which have today been awarded grants worth between £25,000 and £50,000 to support 32 strategic projects that will deliver long lasting environmental benefits for the city.
The Green Capital Strategic Grant Fund forms the largest of three funding streams established by Bristol 2015, the organisation set up to fund, promote and deliver the city’s year as European Green Capital. 

The combined three funds total £2 million to support and inspire activity for Bristol’s European Green Capital year – the city’s largest ever environmental grant fund, and also the largest ever offered by a European Green Capital.
In the biggest response Bristol has ever seen to any grant programme, a staggering 184 applications were submitted ahead of the November deadline, representing 136 different organisation, with bids totalling £8.1 million.
The bids were administered by Bristol City Council, on behalf of Bristol 2015, and judged by an independent assessment panel to ensure total impartiality. 

The panel made its recommendations to a special Cabinet meeting held on 16 December and the decision was ratified today following a seven day challenge period.
Andrew Garrad, Chairman of Bristol 2015 Ltd, said: 

“I would like to congratulate all of the organisations that have been awarded grants today to deliver projects that will ultimately help make Bristol a happier, healthier city for everyone.
“We are very proud to have been able to create the city’s largest ever environmental grant fund and the huge number of applications is testament to Bristol’s commitment to sustainability. 

“Although we were not able to fund all of the projects, we are now looking at a number of other ways that we can support these organisations to ensure that we don’t lose any of the fantastic ideas put forward to improve our city.”

Another successful project is the Ape Project Bike Exchange, a children’s bicycle exchange scheme that enables families to trade unwanted or outgrown bikes for serviced and safe ones at a low cost.

Guy Dobson, Project director of Ape Project Bike Exchange, said:

“Although kids bike swaps have happened occasionally in the city… this is the first of its type nationally in terms of capacity, visiting 100+ schools and events over the space of one year.

“Our work with young offenders, ex offenders and young apprentices in fixing the bikes also make this project unique.”

Another successful project under the food theme is Incredible Edible, a collaboration of food growers that will deliver a highly visible urban food growing trail from Temple Meads to Millennium Square. 

The project aims to open up the debate about food growing in Bristol’s urban areas, and help everyone in the city gain access to a project where they can grow food.

Project leader and co-founder of Incredible Edible, Sara Venn said:

“Being recommended for a strategic grant gives us the ability to collaborate with other organisations within the city, bring food growing into the public eye and give us the opportunity to open dialogue with all communities city-wide.”

The Strategic Grants Fund is one of three grant-funding programmes launched by Bristol 2015. 

The Neighbourhood Partnerships Grants Fund, launched in June 2014, was specifically created to support projects at a neighbourhood level, while the Small Grants Fund provides grants of up to £10,000 each to not-for-profit organisations. 

The deadline for the second and final round of Small Grants funding is 27 February 2015.

Complete list of organisations that have been awarded strategic grants:

APE Project CIC
Architecture Centre
Avon Wildlife Trust
Beacon Farms
Bristol Ensemble
Bristol Festivals
Bristol Fish Project
Bristol Food Network
Bristol Green Doors
Bristol Natural History Consortium (2 projects)
CSE (2 projects)
Demand Energy Equality
Fareshare Southwest
Gathering Voices
Greater Bedminster Community Partnership
Incredible Edible Bristol
People’s Republic of Stokes Croft
Playing out CIC
Portland Centre for Integrative Medicine
Resources Futures Limited
Sustrans (3 projects)
The Bristol Initiative Charitable Trust
The Prince’s Trust
91 Ways to Build a Global City

Read more about the assessment of the 2015 Green Capital Strategic Grants here.

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