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Written Statement - Announcement of continued funding for Communities First Clusters for 2015/16

Lesley Griffiths, Minister for Communities and Tackling Poverty

The Welsh Government is committed to improving the lives of people living in poverty and narrowing the economic, educational and health gaps between our most deprived and affluent areas. With its strategic objectives of prosperous communities, learning communities and healthier communities, the Communities First programme underpins our Tackling Poverty Action Plan and is a major lever in realising our ambitions.  I have, therefore, agreed funding of £31.7 million for Communities First for the period 1st April 2015 to 31st March 2016.


This funding will benefit 52 areas known as Clusters, located in Local Authority areas across Wales.  Clusters submitted detailed delivery plans supporting their applications for 2015/16 funding.  These set out how Clusters will work toward the Programme’s three strategic objectives. At a time of unprecedented budget cuts, I have ensured each will be awarded 95% of the funding for which they applied.


We are also exploring further funding via the European Structural Fund to complement the work of the Communities First programme.


The breakdown of Communities First funding is:


Anglesey County Council: £662,200 via the Môn CF cluster;


Bridgend County Borough Council: £1,738,317 split between three cluster areas: Upper Bridgend, Mid-Bridgend and Lower Bridgend;


Caerphilly County Borough Council: £2,902,016 distributed between: Caerphilly Basin, Mid Valleys West, Upper Rhymney Valley and Mid Valley East;


City of Cardiff Council £2,984,094 between four cluster areas: West, BRG, East and STAR;


Carmarthenshire County Council: £580,007 via the Carmarthenshire cluster;


City and County of Swansea: £2,844,812 between five cluster areas: South, East, West, North-East, and North-West


Conwy County Borough Council: £580,381 via the Conwy cluster;


Flintshire County Council: £676,315 between two cluster areas: Flint Urban (East) and Flint Rural (West);


Gwent Association for Voluntary Organisations – Blaenau Gwent: £1,130,378 between two cluster areas: Ebbw Fawr and Tredegar;


Gwynedd County Council: £576,675 via the Gwynedd cluster;


Merthyr Tydfil County Borough Council:  £1,888,535, split between three clusters: Mid, North and South;


Neath Port Talbot County Borough Council: £1,729,229, split between three clusters: Neath, Afan and Western Valley;


Newport City Council: £2,391,530, split between four clusters: North, East, West and Central;


NSA Afan: £526,800 which will go to the Sandfields and Aberavon cluster


Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council: £4,850,025, split between eight clusters: Porth, Mid-Rhondda, Upper Rhondda Fawr, Upper Cynon, Upper Rhondda Fach, Taf West, Lower Cynon and Pontypridd;


The Co-operative Group: £2,584,539, between four clusters: North Ebbw Fach (Blaenau Gwent), South Ebbw Fach (Blaenau Gwent), Denbighshire and Pembrokeshire;


Torfaen County Borough Council: £1,302,452, split between North Torfaen and South Torfaen;

Vale of Glamorgan Council: £580,922 via the Barry Cluster; and

Wrexham County Borough Council: £1,252,447, split between Urban Villages and Caia Park & Hightown.

This statement is being issued during recess in order to keep members informed. Should members wish me to make a further statement or to answer questions on this when the Assembly returns I would be happy to do so.