The Ashbourne Partnership Charitable Trust has been formed to provide grants to benefit a wide range of organisations and activities, including local environment projects, heritage and arts projects and innovative events which promote community spirit and wellbeing. The scheme may also be used to facilitate match funding from other organisations.
Following a legacy from Marjorie Salt, who made provision to support a number of locally based organisations, the charity has been formed as a successor organisation to the Ashbourne Partnership, which was itself a ‘not for profit’ community group, founded in 2004 to provide coordinated support and funding for a wide range of projects beneficial to Ashbourne.
For over ten years the Ashbourne Partnership sought outside funding and grants to provide ‘pump priming’ monies to enable local projects to be realised. In 2017 the Partnership transferred its various assets, acquired over the years, to established local organisations including the Town Council, and made grants from residual funds to a number of local organisations, including the Ashbourne Arts Festival, Ashbourne Heritage Society, Ashbourne Treasures and Queen Elizabeth’s Grammar School – where an annual local community award was established, presented each year at Speech Day to a student who has made an outstanding contribution to the local community.
An example of the benefit of ‘pump priming’ is Ashbourne Treasures, where a grant of £500 assisted the group in taking forward their proposals, register as a community organisation and apply for and obtain substantial further funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund, Foundation Derbyshire, The Hall Family Fund and The Exton Trust, all of which resulted in a series of exhibitions, events and workshops involving over 300 members of the local community, increasing trade for local businesses and raising awareness and membership of a number of local institutions and the profile of the town.
Having appreciated the difficulty in obtaining that initial funding this Charity has been formed to fill that gap. The Trust now looks forward to supporting local groups and organisations who have a project or event, a passion or a problem, which is relative to Ashbourne and would benefit from charitable funding to get the project started – the trust cannot finance individuals or commercial or business projects and with limited funds available not all applications may be successful.
However, unlike many large national charities the APCT will be run by and for local people – all unpaid volunteers; the six current trustees are well known local figures that between them have a wide knowledge of Ashbourne and experience of the various areas available for funding. This year it is hoped that over 95% of the funding will be made available for grants; a high figure only made possible by the support of local individuals and businesses, which have provided their professional services, support and advice free of charge to help get the scheme underway and keep costs to a minimum.
It is anticipated that the APCT will provide an ongoing resource for local groups and organisations and a conduit for individuals and corporate groups to further support local initiatives. To find out more about the Charity and how you can become involved and make a positive contribution to the Arts, Heritage, Environment and Community of Ashbourne then please do get in touch – full details on the website at; www.ashbournecharitabletrust.org