Invitation to apply for potential funding
We have been working with the Department for Transport (DfT) on our new National Rail Contract and annual business plan for 2022/23, and we are hopeful that we will have funding available to support community investment, using a new Community Fund. We want to support schemes and projects identified by the communities we serve, and we are now (Thursday 16 May) asking for bids to be sent in.
There is a guide to bidding and very simple application form on our website, on https://www.gwr.com/about-gwr/what-you-can-expect/community/community-investment. It is an online application, but we can provide a list of questions as a PDF for review if you would like to see in advance. You must however apply online with a deadline for entry of midnight Monday 27 June. We have made it as simple as possible, we want a very short description of the project, some information about you and your organisation and a breakdown of costs. Projects should be completed by end of March 2023.
We are particularly interested in bids that show a tangible benefit to the community with an emphasis on inclusion and diversity, engagement and education, environmental benefit and increasing rail travel. It would be great if the fund could help close the gap on projects where some existing funding has been secured or could be available from other sources. However, each proposal will be treated on its own merits and consideration of the benefit it would bring to the community, and we will happily fund projects without any match funding.
There are no hard and fast rules; we want to encourage bids of all shapes and sizes, though to be fair, as the funding needs to cover our whole network we are particularly keen on small and medium projects. This could include phased projects, for instance a bid for a feasibility study or some research, to support a larger project.
For more information and to discuss any ideas you have ahead of submission use our dedicated email address CommunityFund@gwr.com. We are keen to encourage as many bids as possible and look forward to hearing from you.
Tom Pierpoint | Business Development Portfolio Director | Great Western Railway