Community groups recognised for work

Community groups in Ashington and Blyth have been recognised for the sterling work they do within the local community.

The groups were recently awarded a grant from the Community Chest, run by Northumberland County Council, and were presented with a certificate by Councillor Liz Simpson at their local area council meeting at the Briardale Centre, Blyth.

The scheme awards grants of up to £5,000 to support community groups and organisations county-wide. The funding can help with costs by issuing 75% of the total amount required, towards equipment for community group activities and sports, venue refurbishments, transport facilities and much more.

More than 1,500 projects have benefited from £2.8million in grants since 2009, which has contributed or helped towards £20 million worth of projects within Northumberland.

 Headway Arts, one of the groups in attendance, received a grant of £2,500 to help with building repairs.

Paul Denton, Development Coordinator at Headway Arts said: “The Community Chest funding has helped Headway Arts to carry out emergency repairs to our building. It's been great to have this support to keep our services running for the benefit of some of the most disadvantaged people in this area.”

Other community groups who benefited included The Little Gem Arts and Crafts Gallery, Parkhead & Wansbeck Powersports, Blyth Stroke Support Group, Butokokan Judo Club and The Dales School.

Newbiggin Central and East Councillor Liz Simpson, said: “It was fantastic to meet local community groups and organisations who work hard to provide excellent services to benefit local people’s lives.

“It’s really important to recognise the great work that these organisations offer to the local community and I wish them every success for the future.”

Cllr Nick Oliver, Cabinet Member for Corporate Services, added: “Groups like Headway Arts are a great example of how Community Chest funding can make a difference to local people.

“The scheme contributes to achieving our ambition to support voluntary and community groups and organisations in Northumberland, to deliver activities to maintain and create sustainable communities.”

For more information about the Community Chest Scheme, visit: or email:

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