Grants mean developments

PUBLISHED: 15:58 23 January 2007 | UPDATED: 14:57 12 May 2010

VILLAGES throughout North Hertfordshire have been developing projects due to a series of improvement grants. A wide variety of rural projects from the refurbishment of village halls to the installation of children s play areas, have been awarded grants b

VILLAGES throughout North Hertfordshire have been developing projects due to a series of improvement grants.

A wide variety of rural projects from the refurbishment of village halls to the installation of children's play areas, have been awarded grants by North Hertfordshire District Council.

Village halls in Ashwell, Reed and Sandon have all received funding for refurbishment, with the villages themselves benefiting from the improved facilities.

The village hall project in Ashwell was given funds that went towards bringing their facilities into the 21st century. The money was a valuable addition to the residents fundraising, and contributed to the state-of-the-art disabled facilities, meeting rooms, toilets, storage units, the kitchen and entrance areas and a modern hall.

One Ashwell resident said: "The opening and refurbishment of the new village hall was a great occasion. It was necessary to bring the facilities up to date and to make sure they were safe and secure. We worked hard to fund it and the money received from the grant helped a great deal."

In all NHDC has put aside £315,000 of Parish Amenity Capital Improvement Funding (PACIF) towards projects costing almost twice that amount.

Villages have also received funding for smaller community improvements through the Council's Parish Challenge Fund and the Parish Enhancement and Cleansing Fund.

The latest grants include refurbishment of lights and bollards for Ashwell, a new path in Reed that gives children a safer route to school, a refurbishment to Barkway Village Hall, and improved play equipment in Sandon.

NHDC Portfolio Holder, Cllr Tricia Gibbs said: "It is always a pleasure to see so many organisations benefiting from these grants. The PACIF has certainly enabled parishes and other organisations in the rural areas to fund major refurbishment's and developments. This reinforces our commitment to the rural areas to improve leisure and cultural facilities across the district.

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