A scheme set to give rural communities and businesses a boost has opened to applications.

Grants between £10,000 and £50,000 are available for the execution of capital projects in rural areas. The grants could be used to:

  • improve community facilities, such as green spaces
  • boost access to arts and culture in a bid to grow local tourism economies
  • support agricultural businesses looking to expand their remit and rural businesses looking to launch or grow their products and services

The initiative is open to organisations within rural communities, including but not limited to:

  • small and medium sized businesses
  • public sector organisations
  • higher and further educational institutions
  • voluntary organisations
  • registered charities

All locations within the district are eligible, except urban parts of Braintree and Bocking.

The aim is to encourage business growth and create employment opportunities within rural areas which will help improve productivity and strengthen the rural economy and rural communities.

This scheme has received £589,191 from the UK Government through the Rural England Prosperity Fund. The fund is a rural top-up to the UK Shared Prosperity Fund which is a central pillar of the Government’s Levelling Up agenda.

Businesses and organisations can visit www.braintree.gov.uk/ruralprosperityfund to find out more about the scheme, criteria and application process.