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Stansted Airport Community Fund awards £33,500 to eight good causes in Uttlesford, East Herts and Harlow

Eight worthy causes are to share £33,500 from Stansted Airport Community Fund (SACF) – including a village gardens and allotment group so it can buy play equipment including a mud kitchen for children.

The fund offers grants of up to £5,000 to projects aimed at improving community life, the environment and conservation within a 10-mile radius of the airport.

An independent committee, representing local councils and airport stakeholders, meets every three months to discuss applications and decide how the money will be distributed.

SACF chair Daniel Burford said: “Since we relaunched the fund in 2023, the SACF has been privileged to award more than £350,000 worth of grants to 60 local charities and not-for-profit organisations.

“We know that organisations continue to face huge challenges, and grant funding like this is more important than ever.”

In the latest round of funding awards, Little Canfield Community Gardens and Allotment Association received £1,380 to buy outdoor play equipment, including a mud kitchen and gardening tools.

Its community liaison manager Lucy Dowsett said: “We are so grateful for the SACF’s funding, which will enable us to purchase new play equipment for children, including a mud kitchen and small gardening tools, which we hope to have in place for the Easter holiday.

“This new equipment will provide the children with a safe and secure place to play and learn outdoors. It will also provide an opportunity for the children to explore their creativity and practise their social and communication skills.

“We are very excited to be able to provide this opportunity for the children in the village. Our gardens and allotments have brought so many community members together, and we are looking forward to extending the facility and arranging more events and activities for the village.”

In East Herts, Hunsdon Parish Council was awarded £5,000 for football goalposts, decorating costs and storage while Albury Village Hall got £5,000 for sports equipment.

In Uttlesford, Brightview Educational Care Farm at Stebbing received £5,000 for learning resources, St Mary’s Church in Great Dunmow was granted £5,000 for a trolley and Radwinter Bowls Club was given £3,684 for roof replacement.

And in Harlow, Church Langley Community Association received £5,000 for new chairs and St Mary Magdalene Church was awarded £3,500 for flooring.

A successful planning application for the airport to handle up to 43 million passengers a year led to the SACF’s relaunch in January 2023.

The airport is contributing £1.5m over a decade to the fund, topped up with fines imposed on airlines for violating noise regulations.

A one-off, flagship award of up to £50,000 to a good cause is also presented each year. Last year it went to Touchpoint Stansted.

The fund will open applications for the next round of funding in early April.

Mr Burford said: “One of the great things about SACF is how often local organisations can apply for funding. We have made the application process as simple as possible but we’re happy to offer help to any groups who may be interested in applying.”

For details, email community@stanstedairport.com.

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