By Carmelo Garcia – Local Democracy Reporter

Gloucester’s answer to the innovative community food initiative, The Long Table, is among the projects that have been selected by the city council to receive support from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

The project set to be called The Nest is one of nine that have been successful in the second phase of grants totalling £160,000, which are being given to schemes to help improve opportunities and quality of life for residents.

In total the city received £1.48m from government after the council submitted an investment plan identifying the challenges and opportunities, following extensive local consultation. Applications to the fund were assessed by the council working with independent external partner judges.

The Nest, a social enterprise opening on Southgate Street will receive £32,000. It will be a restaurant and café offering cookery skills for local people as well as a base for start-up food companies.

The project has sought advice from The Long Table in Stroud, the community food initiative that has received national recognition for its Pay As You Can scheme helping people in financial hardship.

Restaurateur Wanja Odhiambo, who specialises in African food is one of the directors of the community interest company behind it.

She said: “This is something I’m passionate about. Good food shouldn’t be just for those who have money it should be for everyone. If people can’t pay we will find a way to offer the food, and will invite families or people who haven’t been out for ages and can’t afford to go out and socialise.

“We will also offer local people the opportunity in the evenings to run a pop up. They could be the next big thing in Gloucester and offer a cuisine that is not already available in the city.”

Other projects that will receive a share of the funding include The Music Works for the Gloucester Music Hub on Kings Square.

The initiative supports young people especially those in challenging circumstances, giving them the skills to help them gain employment and contributing to the cultural life of the city.

St Oswald’s Priory, the nationally important ancient monument and alleged resting place of Queen Athelflaed will receive £16,010 to improve lighting to deter anti-social behaviour.

It will also go towards planting around the monument and community engagement work to highlight its significance.

The All Nations Community Centre, built by local members of the Windrush generation, will receive £12,500 for an upgrade to its heating system to help it provide a Warm Space for local people along with other improvements.

Gloucester Park will benefit from new signs and money towards opening a social enterprise café, acting as a base for community engagement and encouraging greater use of the park, while supporting the bid for green flag status.

Jon McGinty, Managing Director of Gloucester City Council, said: “We’re delighted to be able to award this money to some truly inspirational projects taking place across our community.

“It’s fantastic to see there are so many people in our city working hard to support each other and put back into their community through new and innovative ideas.”

The UK Shared Prosperity Fund is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and provides £2.6 billion of funding for local investment by March 2025.

Gloucester News Centre – http://gloucesternewscentre.co.uk

New Gloucester cafe among social projects to get share of £160,000 funding boost by Marketing | Gloucester News Centre - http://gloucesternewscentre.co.uk/
Thank you! Your subscription has been confirmed. You'll hear from us soon.