The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) is a central pillar of the UK government’s Levelling Up agenda and a significant component of its support for places across the UK. It provides up to three years funding between 2022/23 and 2024/25 for local investment, with all areas of the UK receiving an allocation.
The primary goal of the UKSPF is to build pride in place and increase life chances across the UK. This aligns with Levelling Up White Paper missions, particularly: ‘By 2030, pride in place, such as people’s satisfaction with their town centre and engagement in local culture and community, will have risen in every area of the UK, with the gap between the top performing and other areas closing.’
In August 2022, Mansfield District Council submitted a UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) Investment Plan setting out the area’s priorities for spending the district’s UKSPF allocation of £2.955m. This was approved in early December 2022.
The aim of UKSPF is to support the Government’s Levelling Up commitment through three investment priorities of Communities and Place; Supporting Local Business and People and Skills.
The Mansfield District Investment Plan identified the following themes under these priorities:
Communities and Place
- Culture and Communities
- Health and Wellbeing
Supporting Local Business
- Business Support, including key emerging sectors and supporting innovation in the high street
- Linking Business and Education
People and Skills
- Barriers to Employment
- Higher Level Skills
- Digital Inclusion and Skills
Mansfield’s Approach to UKSPF – Initial Call for Communities and Place Projects
The Investment Plan covers the financial years 2022/23, 2023/24 and 2024/25. During Year 1 of Mansfield’s Plan, the focus will be on the Community and Place Investment Priority, with this activity then running across the duration of the Investment Plan period.
At this stage, the Council is therefore initially focusing on identifying projects which will deliver the Community and Place Investment Priority. This will be delivered in two ways:
- A Community Grant Fund
- Direct Applications
The Community Grant Fund is being managed via the Mansfield CVS and the link to that and the associated guidance can be found here: https://www.mansfieldcvs.org/communitygrantfund/
The rest of this webpage and the associated guidance relates to the direct applications for projects seeking over £15,000 and includes access to the on-line form.
How to apply
The detailed guidance can be downloaded on this page as a pdf; applications can be made using the on-line form below.
Projects must align with one of the themes of ‘Culture and Communities’ and / or ‘Health and Wellbeing’ and specifically respond to some of the challenges identified in the Mansfield UKSPF Investment Plan – a summary of these are included in Appendix A of the guidance.
The UKSPF requires activity to be delivered against an agreed set of interventions. For Mansfield, under the Communities and Place priority these are:
- Enhanced support for existing cultural, historic and heritage institutions that make up the local cultural heritage offer.
- Support for local arts, cultural, heritage and creative activities, focusing on inclusion.
- Funding for impactful volunteering and/or social action projects to develop social and human capital in local places.
- Investment in capacity building and infrastructure support for local civil society and community groups.
- Investment in community engagement schemes to support community involvement in decision making in local regeneration.
- Community measures to reduce the cost of living, including through measures to improve energy efficiency, and combat fuel poverty and climate change.
Projects must also be able to deliver against key outputs and outcomes, set out in the guidance.
Below is a PDF with the application questions some of which will require you to prepare answers for example, budgetary expenditure, please have this ready before you begin the online form.
Guidance notes and form can be found below:
- Mansfield UK Shared Prosperity Fund Communities and Place Direct Applications
- Application Form
- Application Form Questions
First Call for Communities & Place Projects
Mansfield District Council is inviting applications for funding from the Communities and Place allocation by the deadline 5pm on the 8th February 2023. Projects ideally will be able to commence before 31st March 2023 but projects that run beyond this period / across the duration of the UKSPF Investment Plan will be welcome.
Whilst this is a competitive bidding process, the government encourages a mix of competition and commissioning and therefore depending on what applications come forward, Mansfield District Council may undertake some commissioning, potentially bringing forward projects of its own and asking projects to collaborate where there is a clear rationale for doing so. Every encouragement is given under this call for projects for organisations to collaborate to maximise the impact.
How will applications be assessed?
Initially, eligibility will be assessed, noting:
- Financial Due Diligence checks will be undertaken as appropriate at the Council’s discretion. These checks will include the applicant’s financial standing, assessing ability to deal with issues such as cost increases and with cash flow issues with grant provided in arrears. If these are not satisfactorily assessed, the project will be deemed ineligible.
- Applicants must be legally constituted and if approved, the organisation will enter into a legally binding funding agreement and therefore will carry the liability for ensuring that the terms and conditions of the funding agreement are met.
- The Council reserves the right to deem a project ineligible if the application is incomplete, has insufficient justification or is not signed.
- Particular attention will be given to the position on insurances, liabilities and subsidy control.
If the application is to proceed, Appendix B within the guidance references the Assessment Framework against which each application will be scored.
Who can apply?
The recipients of UKSPF monies may include local authorities, public sector organisations, higher and further education institutions, private sector companies, voluntary organisations and charities.
Any queries should be made in writing to: to Regeneration@Mansfield.gov.uk and be sent no later than a week before the application deadline.