Community Fund Allocations 2017

Grant_MoneyThorner Community Fund (TCF)

Allocation of Thorner Community Fund Grant 2017

All village groups, clubs and societies were invited to apply for an allocation from the 2017 fund. Seven bids were received.

The money received from donations by Thorner residents for Leeds Festival tickets provides the annual grant fund.

The grant meeting was held on 6th November 2017.

It was attended by the following Thorner Community Fund (TCF) committee:

Wayne Young (Chair)
Annette Carr
Mark Darley
Gillian Riley
Nick Tucker

They were joined, to form an extended committee, by:

Melvin Benn and Alister Turnbull.

Rachel Lane Fox was unavailable this year; we expect her to be back with us for the 2018 annual grant allocation meeting.

The committee would like to express sincere thanks to Melvin and Alister for their support and contributions to the assessment process.

Following the very high demand last year, there were fewer bids than usual this year, but we have noted the emerging 2018 plans that some groups have in development.

The committee uses the following broad criteria to help make decisions on the allocation of grants:

  • viability of the group
  • how active/successful the group is in their own fundraising efforts
  • actual worth or visible/tangible benefit of the award to the village
  • past support from the Thorner Community Fund
  • other income sources

As in previous years, those involved in the grant allocation process spent a number of hours, both individually and collectively, assessing the bids against the above aspects. This year we adopted the scoring system that we had piloted successfully last year. At the grant meeting Melvin and Alister brought a fresh perspective and independent oversight, ahead of the final decisions. All in all, we are confident that the annual grant process is rigorous, fair and ensures the appropriate use of the Community Fund money.

The following is a resume of the rationale applied, the decisions made and the amounts allocated. As well as informing the village groups of the outcome of the annual grant allocation, we hope that this may be of interest to unsuccessful applicants for future bids.

Bowling Club
Bid request £24,264
Grant awarded: £ Nil
Purpose – Club house re-furbishment.

Thorner Bowling Club is an established crown green bowling club and is highly regarded by the bowling community of this area. The club provides a crown green bowling facility for all Thorner residents and the neighbouring villages of Bramham, Scarcroft, Shadwell and Clifford. Total membership is currently 36, which is a slight increase from previous years and is mainly due to additional Thorner residents joining, now 18 in total. The club is also home of the Leeds Junior teams who are managed and coached by Thorner club members.
The club applied for grant funding to re-furbish its toilet facilities to bring them up to current health and safety standards and to particularly ensure the disabled toilet provision was enhanced from its current poor provision. Some wall and balcony repairs and improved seating were also part of the bid.
The bid made it clear that the project could be split into three parts and spread over a period of time. The Bowling Club was only able to provide one quotation, hence was a non-compliant bid.
The TCF extended committee was keen to support the enhancement of bowling club facilities but at this stage felt the bid was underdeveloped and lacked an overall plan.
It was agreed that the TCF committee should encourage the Bowling Club to further develop its plan into a longer-term sustainable project with a view to re-submitting next year. No funding was awarded from the 2017 grant.

Cricket Club
Bid request £1,695
Grant awarded: £1,695
Purpose – Concrete practice base.

Thorner Mexborough Cricket Club is long-established in the village. It currently has 34 senior members who play in two teams in the Wetherby League and 12 regular junior members who have competed for the last two seasons in a junior league. A protective skirt for the net around the practice area was funded from the 2016 grant. Their bid this year was for funding for a concrete base for the practice area, to enable sessions to take place even when the ground is wet. In recent years, like many village cricket teams across the country, the club has struggled to attract and keep players. The re-emergence of a junior section has been a positive step to help with the sustainability of the village club. There has been improved fundraising by the club over the last year which also added to the strength of the bid. The bid was fully supported.

Friends of Thorner School PTA
Bid request £8,000
Grant awarded: £8,000
Purpose – Outdoor multi-use games area.

The TCF provided funding towards the all-weather fitness area last year. The school is now seen as a flagship school within Leeds, beyond and nationally, regarding its “Daily Mile” initiative and the other developments to its outdoor facilities. These facilities are available to any interested village groups out of school hours.
TCF signalled, at the start of this programme of works, its intended support towards this multi-year investment.
This year’s bid, which is part of the third and final stage of this programme, is to part-fund the conversion of the existing school playground into a Multi Use Games Area. The full cost of the project will be around £22,000.
The bid was strong, evidencing and providing all elements required to be considered a fully compliant application. The bid was fully supported.

Over 60s Association
Bid request £664.77
Grant awarded: £664.77
Purpose – Re-carpeting.

Thorner Over 60s Association was set up over 50 years ago, to “organise the social and welfare work for the Over 60s in the Parish of Thorner……. to provide for the social welfare recreation and leisure-time occupation …..and to address isolation, loneliness and health issues for the more elderly residents in the village.” The Committee, is striving to extend the membership, and to make the Bungalow available more widely as a community facility, by making it available to other community groups, e.g. already used for Police Surgeries and by the Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group, Royal British Legion, Thorner Produce Society, First Responders, Mums and Tots Café.
Whist there is some wear left in the current carpeting within the building, there are areas where it presents trip-hazards and there have been a couple of falls. The bid was therefore to replace the full carpet, to ensure a safe environment for its members/users.
TCF was pleased to support the bid in full.

Parish Centre
Bid request £3,000
Grant awarded: up to £3,000
Purpose – Internal decoration

The Parish Centre is a well-used building – both regularly by many local groups as well as being utilised by visitors from further afield, for receptions, exhibitions and training sessions. In addition to the hire fees the annual fundraising is boosted by the 100 Club. This year’s bid project is to decorate the interior of the building, including the making good of some water damage to a ceiling.
Whilst there is still money in their bank account we acknowledged that the final stage of the new windows programme is not yet completed and a significant amount of money is needed to complete the job. We understand the new windows are due to be installed by Christmas and the resulting stonemasonry work on the inside of the building will be completed not long afterwards. The re-decoration would only begin once the work had been completed. It was agreed to request further detail of the remaining window installations as well as the planned timetable. In the meantime £3,000 has been ring-fenced from the 2017 grant award funds for the decoration project. The bid was based on a budget estimate. TCF will consult further with the Parish Centre regarding the eventual chosen supplier for the work to ensure the actual cost of the decoration project is funded by the 2017 grant.
The grant will be awarded once TCF has been notified that the new windows installation programme has been finished.

Parish Council Playground Working Group
Bid request £5,294
Grant awarded: £ 5,294
Purpose – Activity Net for village playground.

The Playground Working Group is a sub-group of the Parish Council. The Parish Council reviewed the current village playground facilities in the spring of 2016. The Parish Council has some funds put aside to refurbish the existing facilities. However, the sub-group has bid to TCF for funding to specifically fund one piece of new play-equipment, an activity net. Longer-term, the Parish Council and its Playground Working Group, wishes to provide equipment to benefit Thorner residents of all ages in improving and maintaining their fitness, but their bid to TCF this year is only for the provision of this piece of new equipment which will be housed within the existing childrens’ playground.
The TCF has been informed by the Working Group that planning permission has been granted for the childrens’ playground to be re-furbished.
The TCF approved the allocation of 2017 grant funding for the specified activity net.

Quarry Group
Bid request £786 or £1326
Grant awarded: provisionally up to £1326
Purpose – To fund one or two interpretation panels.

The group’s bid was for the funding of one or two interpretation panels. These will be erected at the site of the old quarry on Church Hill. The panels will provide the historical background of the site – there will be text, photographs and historical maps. Thorner Historical Society will contribute some of the content, as will Thorner Primary School students working under the guidance of the West Yorkshire Geological Trust. The remains of the old houses will be explained as well as the geological origins of the rock face. Some fundraising has been achieved by the group itself and some of this will be used to seek planning permission for the erection of the interpretation panels. TCF approved the grant due to the educational value that the content of the panels would add both for villagers and Thorner visitors alike, in relation to the historical and geological importance of the site. TCF will request that the Quarry Group chooses the stainless steel structures in preference to the aluminium panels, given their significantly longer life expectancy. TCF would expect any residual funding to be put towards the cost of the panels but would be willing to award the balance up to £1326. This will be given once the Quarry Group has confirmed that any required planning and/or access permissions have been granted.

Thorner Community Fund Committee.


November 2017