Village hauls: Community venues across the district benefit from £10K grants - don't miss out

Mendip District Council is urging eligible village halls and community centres to register for a £10K Government grant.

village hallMany of these vital facilities, in the heart of our communities, could be claiming for a COVID-19 Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant.

There are some exceptions - church halls are exempt as they don't pay rates in the first place - but a number of village venues in our district have already discovered they're eligible and have been awarded the £10,000 boost.

They include Paul's Street Community Centre, Shepton Mallet, and West Pennard Village Hall.

Holly Smith, Chair of West Pennard Village Hall, said: "We are lucky to have such a well-used space that's loved by the community. However, the current crisis has seen us lose approximately 40% of our income from our events calendar and 60% from our bookings.

"This grant has enabled us to cover the essentials. It ensures the continued viability of the hall and that we will still be here for our hirers and our wonderful community on the other side of this."

Neil Shearn, owner of Paul's Street Community Centre, said: "We were absolutely amazed and thrilled to receive this funding, and very grateful too of course.

"We are looking forward to when things get back to normal, and we can once again throw open our doors to the community."

Registering for the grant is straightforward, and the forms are easy to navigate.

Leader of Mendip District Council, Cllr Ros Wyke, said: "These treasured venues are often the beating heart within communities, offering a range of classes, activities and events. Now their doors are closed, and their ability to generate income has ceased.

"The Council is here to support struggling businesses, big and small, across allsectors - and that includes our much-valued community centres and halls.

"To them we say, please register online and get the grant help you need. Because we all want to see these vital venues back again, and thriving, once this health emergency is over."

  • Eligible businesses in the retail, hospitality, and leisure sectors with a rateable value of under £15,000 will receive a grant of £10,000 per property
  • Check out the guidance from Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE) to see if your community venue is eligible: Eligibility for support for village halls
  • Registration forms are easy to navigate and can be found on Mendip District Council's website www.mendip.gov.uk/businessrates.