Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund

Introduction to the Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund

Worthing Borough Council are proud to be launching the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) Neighbourhood Fund programme for 2024.

After the successful allocation of over £550,000 to community groups in 2023, the council is now in a position to open up the community-based funding round again for 2024. Last year's CIL Neighbourhood Fund programme helped Worthing Borough Council better appreciate and celebrate the generosity, creativity, and ambition of our voluntary and community sector.

We want to continue working hand in hand with our communities, to help our residents and our places to thrive, in particular at a neighbourhood level.

We want to continue supporting and celebrating the great work of the voluntary and community sector as we launch the 2024 CIL Neighbourhood Fund programme.

And we are making some changes to the information and guidance for applicants in response to what we've learned from last year and because our funding pot is significantly smaller this year.

The Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund pots of money have been accrued from payments made by developers building in the local area and are available to local community groups, organisations and residents associations in the selected areas. A summary of the applications received and which projects have been funded can be found in the summary of bids received section (see below).

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What can the CIL Neighbourhood Fund be used for?

15% of all CIL funds received by Worthing Borough Council are to be spent in the neighbourhood where the development took place (known as the Neighbourhood Fund).

In accordance with the Government's CIL Regulations the CIL Neighbourhood Fund should be used to support local projects which entail:

  • the provision, improvement, replacement, operation or maintenance of infrastructure; or
  • anything else that is concerned with addressing the demands that development places on an area

The opportunity with this fund is the "demand that the development places on an area". This gives communities freedom and power to spend the money on a wide range of things, in consultation with the local residents. Local project proposals seeking support from the CIL neighbourhood fund, can therefore cover a broad range of project types, by using the opportunities that local development brings to an area.

This might include projects that:

  • tackle social isolation
  • encourage community cohesion
  • improvements to open space, play and leisure facilities
  • projects that enhance your local environment, or tackles the impact on the climate
  • activity that promotes outdoor spaces
  • activity that enhance people's health and wellbeing
  • public art projects
  • encourage residents to use local activities they might not normally be able to access

The activity must take place in the CIL area you are applying for, as defined below.

As part of the application and any subsequent award you will be expected to evidence the local need and provide impactful case studies.

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What types of projects are we looking for in 2024?

As a council for the community, we want to continue working hand in hand with our communities, to help our residents and our places to thrive, in particular at a neighbourhood level. We want to continue supporting and celebrating the great work of the voluntary and community sector as we launch the 2024 CIL Neighbourhood Fund programme. And we are making some changes to the information and guidance for applicants in response to what we've learned from last year and because our funding pot is smaller this year.

The expectation is that projects which receive CIL funding in 2024 will be delivering projects in the three CIL Areas which have funding available (Coastal East, Coastal West and North West).

In particular in 2024, we are interested in projects which meet the following funding outcomes and themes.

Funding outcomes for 2024:

  • Supporting Worthing's residents and communities to become more connected within and across neighbourhoods: This year we are looking to fund projects which involve a high level of collaboration. This could be collaboration between groups / partners / organisations that work in different neighbourhoods: bringing together different residents to grow relationships; learn from one another and connect to community spaces and places in their neighbourhoods. We are interested in funding groups who want to develop new ideas and/or adapt their ways of working to deliver projects focused on bridging gaps between communities and reaching out to those residents who might not otherwise get the support they need.
  • Supporting Worthing's residents and communities to become more involved in designing projects: We are keen to fund groups which can demonstrate how they are involving residents and communities in the design of projects. For example, if a project's beneficiaries are young people, we would be looking for evidence that young people have been directly involved in shaping the project proposal and will be involved in delivery. This type of approach is sometimes called ‘co-design' or 'co-production'.

Funding themes and examples for 2024:

  • Improving health and wellbeing: Projects which involve different groups of residents and communities (including young people) coming together in the neighbourhood to take part in community activities and/or action that reduces social isolation, promotes feelings of belonging and increases health and wellbeing. This could also be about connecting residents at risk of social isolation to parks, open spaces and the seafront.
  • Caring for our neighbourhoods and communities: projects which involve residents and communities in caring for our streets, our open public spaces (ie parks, seafront, community gardens etc…) and our community buildings.
  • Community cooperation: projects which seek to test and develop new approaches to addressing the cost of living and financial inequalities through schemes such as bulk-buying, community food growing and dining schemes, food co-ops, and shared resources (ie community transport).
  • Tackling environmental issues: Projects which involve residents and communities taking action on nature recovery and climate change mitigation (ie water and flood management, community composting, waste reduction, food growing, etc)

The council will accept a wide range of projects, as stated in the ‘What can the CIL Neighbourhood Fund be used for?' section above. However, if there are a number of projects which meet the criteria but not enough CIL funds to be allocated to them all in a CIL area, then the projects will be scored by the assessment panels based on a range of criteria, including whether they meet the above values and themes. Those which do will score higher.

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How will neighbourhoods be defined?

In the absence of parishes and neighbourhood plans, which is the case in Worthing, the CIL Regulations allow the council to design its own bespoke definition of what constitutes a local neighbourhood area for the purpose of allocating the CIL Neighbourhood Fund.

The CIL Neighbourhood funding is allocated based on ‘CIL areas' (groupings of wards) where the development takes place, with the CIL receipts pooled and to be opened up to applications if an area has over £10k collected and unallocated.

The aggregated groups of wards which form the Worthing 'CIL areas' are set out below:

  • Coastal East: Heene, Central and Selden: Pot total £11K
  • Coastal West: Marine and Goring: Pot total £86K
  • North West: Northbrook, Castle and Durrington: Pot total £108K
  • North: Tarring, Gaisford and Salvington: Pot total £0K
  • North East: Broadwater and Offington: Pot total £0K

Note that the Worthing CIL areas exclude any area covered by the South Downs National Park Authority.

See also the interactive map showing the CIL areas listed above, as well as the locations of the projects which have previously been allocated CIL funding:

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Who can apply for the CIL Neighbourhood Fund?

To ensure the local link with development, only organisations based in a Worthing 'CIL area' that has accumulated at least £10,000 of CIL Neighbourhood Funds are encouraged to submit project applications. The funds will be made available as part of an annual bidding process.

Projects seeking funding from the CIL Neighbourhood Fund should be community-led and ideally be delivered by a local community organisation, group or club. It is a requirement that the group being allocated CIL funding must be formalised and have a constitution. The expressions of interest stage will give groups a chance to be signposted to a partner organisation to assist with getting set up to bid for grant funding.

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What value of project proposals are invited?

The CIL Neighbourhood Fund is intended to support small local projects. Bids will be considered on their merits for local projects, as follows:

  • Project proposals can request a minimum of £1,000 and up to a maximum CIL neighbourhood fund allocation of £15,000 (or up to the total amount of funds in a CIL area, if below £15,000)
  • Applications for larger sums, of up to £30K, could be considered in CIL areas where the pot is greater than £50K, providing the applicants can demonstrate that they have actively sought matching funds from alternative funding providers
  • Project proposals that match CIL Neighbourhood Fund, with other funding sources, will be encouraged

The CIL Neighbourhood Fund can be used to fund 100% of project costs, or can also be used in conjunction with other sources of funding. For example, the CIL Fund could be used as the match funding element to secure a larger funding award from other organisations, or from the council's own grant schemes.

It is important to note this fund will not be able to be used as ongoing revenue support, but will instead provide one-off emergency funding that could help to keep organisations and facilities alive whilst longer term funding solutions are secured. There will be a stipulation that any funding allocated to revenue projects is time limited and that the group or organisation must seek alternative funding before the CIL Neighbourhood Fund allocation runs out.

The CIL Neighbourhood Fund will be available to fund one off project costs. This means there will be no commitment by the council to meet ongoing costs (eg maintenance or revenue costs), beyond the initial funding award. The application form asks for groups to consider the impact of funding the project beyond the initial funding.

Additional CIL Neighbourhood Fund applications to support future phases of a project may however be considered on their merits.

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How to apply

The step-by-step process for allocating funding from the Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund is set out below:

  • 21st March to 17th May 2024: Groups with a project proposal are recommended to complete and submit the Worthing CIL Expression of Interest form (please note that this is not compulsory and you can skip straight to the application form). Groups should complete the expression of interest form if they are unsure if they are eligible to apply, wish to be directed to a partner organisation who can provide support to groups to ensure that they are set up correctly to be allocated funding, or wish to discuss their project with council officers:
  • 9th and 10th May 2024: A series of networking events will be held which community groups are invited to attend. In these workshops we will be sharing refreshed guidance on the fund and creating opportunities for participants to network, share knowledge about the neighbourhood and develop project ideas. Community Works representatives will also be invited to attend to provide support to groups or point them to the appropriate resources. Should you wish to sign up to attend any of the events please use the Google Form below. The networking events will be taking place:
    • Coastal West @ Shaftesbury Room, Worthing Leisure Centre:
      Thursday 9th May 9:30am to 11:30am
    • North West @ Northbrook Barn Community Centre:
      Thursday 9th May 6:30pm to 8:30pm
    • Coastal East @ The Sidney Walter Centre:
      Friday 10th May 10am to 12 midday
    • Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund Networking Events Registration
  • 20th May to 28th June 2024: Groups are invited to complete and submit the Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund application form - this consists of a simple Google form (some of the questions asked are detailed in the Guidance Note below), with the link and list of questions available below:
  • July 2024: Suitable projects will be sent through to an assessment panel - the panel is to consist of Elected Worthing Ward Members and specially invited Community representatives who will go through the application forms submitted and evaluate/score each application. The panel will then recommend which projects are to be allocated CIL funding.
  • July 2024: The assessment panel will complete an evaluation of each project proposal and provide feedback to each applicant.
  • August 2024: The assessment panel's recommendations are included in a report to the Cabinet member for Communities and Young People who will sign off on which bids are approved.
  • September 2024: Formal process starts for allowing transfer of funds, starting with signing CIL fund agreement

More information is provided in the Guidance Note for applicants:

All applicants will be asked to submit an application form which will allow the CIL assessment panel to assess proposals against a range of criteria. The evaluation criteria which will be used by the relevant assessment panel to review and score your application is available here:

Worthing Borough Council has put together a document which contains some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) regarding the CIL Neighbourhood Fund. This document will be updated as more questions arise throughout the CIL Neighbourhood Fund process each year:

All applications which are allocated CIL funding will have a certain time frame to spend the funds. Therefore, we are interested in hearing about projects that will be able to begin soon. The project will then be monitored to ensure the correct use is made of the CIL Neighbourhood Funds. Regular updates on the project should be provided to the council, along with a report and photos upon completion of the project.

Any bids which aren't successful this year will be informed of the reasons why and will be given the opportunity to reapply next year, dependent on sufficient funds being available in the relevant 'CIL area'.

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Summary of bids received in 2023 and progress report

A total of 57 applications were received in 2023 for the second round of CIL funding. The council was delighted to see the range of projects highlighted by applicants. Of the applications received, a total of 45 were allocated CIL funding, based on the evaluation of the assessment panels. This will result in a total of over £577,000 of CIL Neighbourhood Funding being given to the community and voluntary sector in Worthing to help fund some brilliant projects.

The Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund Progress Report gives a summary of each of the successful applications who have been granted funding and provides an update as to the progress of the project:

The interactive map shows the locations of all the projects which have been awarded CIL Neighbourhood Funding (including in 2021), as well as the five ‘CIL areas’:

The council has provided feedback to all unsuccessful applicants and referred them to work with Community Works who will be able to assist them with getting the support they need to apply for future grants. All groups will have the opportunity to reapply in the next CIL funding round.

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Any questions?

Regarding expressions of interest or questions with regard to the Worthing CIL Neighbourhood Fund, please contact:

See also:

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Page last updated: 09 May 2024

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