Grants available for communities affected by operation of Gatwick Airport

A charity that awards grants to deserving projects within communities affected by operations at Gatwick Airport has been opened-up to application from Crowborough, Rotherfield and Heron’s Ghyll.

Gatwick Airport Community Trust (GACT) supports schemes that are targeted towards the development of young people, the arts, sporting facilities, environmental improvement and conservation, improvements to community facilities, volunteering, the elderly and the disabled.  The normal level of grants is from £1,000 to £5,000.

The independent charity has been awarding grants annually for the past 13 years to parts of East and West Sussex, Surrey and Kent.   During that time hundreds of projects have benefitted from funds.

For the first time this year the area of benefit now includes Buxted, Crowborough, Durgates, Five Ash Down, Groombridge, Hadlow Down, Heron’s Ghyll, Maresfield, Mark Cross, Rotherfield, Town Row.

Worldwide Volunteering for Young People were awarded a grant by the Trust in 2010 and 2011

Worldwide Volunteering for Young People were awarded a grant by the Trust in 2010 and 2011

Last year GACT awarded grants to 141 different projects totalling over £188,000.   Beneficiaries ranged from scouts and village halls to museums, sports clubs, choirs, theatre groups, pre-schools, the elderly and people with disabilities.

In West Kent in 2015 the Trust awarded 16 grants totalling £17,300.  Successful applicants ranged from Eden Valley Museum in Edenbridge to Broadwater Down Primary School, Chiddingstone Sports Association, and Domestic Abuse Volunteer Support Services to Speldhurst Bowls Club, Nourish Community Foodbank and Trinity Theatre & Arts Centre in Tunbridge Wells. 

Anyone seeking funding for a local community project can get more information and download application forms from www.gact.org.uk.

There are just a few weeks to go until the deadline for this year’s grant applications to Gatwick Airport Community Trust. All applications must be received by Friday 11th March to be considered for a grant award in this year’s funding programme.

The Trust is an independent charity that has been in operation since 2002 as part of the legal arrangements between West Sussex County Council, Crawley Borough Council and Gatwick Airport Limited following publication of the airport’s Sustainable Development Strategy.  The purpose of setting up the Trust was to ensure that, as the airport continued to grow, funds generated by the existence of the airport should be made available to a board of independent trustees and they should be directed back into the community that was affected by the airport and its continuing growth.

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