Groups hit jackpot with £40,000 lottery windfall

FIVE groups in the Banbridge area are today sharing in a grants windfall from the Big Lottery Fund’s Awards for All programme.

The small grants programme is awarding grants totalling more than £40,000 to the local groups as part of a grants roll-out of £244,092 to 40 groups across Northern Ireland.

Awards for All offers community, voluntary and statutory groups the chance to apply for small grants of between £500 and £10,000 that will have a big impact on local communities and the lives of people most in need.

Finnis Rural Development Association, which provides activities for people living in and around the Finnis area, has been awarded a grant to £10,000 to buy new equipment for its community hall including new chairs, a sound system and concrete so they can create a barbecue area. These improvements will meet they can run a wider range of activities for local people.

Magerally Rural Association provides a range of activities for the local community and will use their £10,000 grant to run a range of classes and events throughout the year.

The committee at Dromore Orange Hall will use its grant of £7,470 to deliver a number of events to commemorate the centenary of Ulster Day and the signing of the Covenant.

Banbridge and District Horticultural Society, which runs lectures, films, visits and shows that encourage local people to take an interest in horticulture and gardening, has been awarded a grant of £2,967 to run courses and activities as part of their 50th anniversary celebrations.

St Mary’s Playgroup, which provides pre-school places for children in the Seapatrick area, has also been awarded a grant of £10,000 to buy play equipment.

Frank Hewitt, Big Lottery Fund NI Chair, said: “The Big Lottery Fund’s NI Awards for All programme funds health, education, environment and community projects that help people bring about positive change in their lives, improve health and well-being, develop skills and create safer communities.

“The application process is simple and accessible and shall remain so, making it easy for applicants to successfully apply for small pots of funding that can have such a big impact on local communities and lives.”

Application forms and guidance notes are available to download at

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