Trust for Oxfordshire’s Environment Grants

Trust for Oxfordshire's Environment


Grant amount: Up to £7,000

Next deadline: Sep 3, 2018

Later deadlines: Jan 11, 2019, Mar 5, 2019, Jun 4, 2019

Applicant type: Government Entity Nonprofit

Funding uses: Education / Outreach, Applied Project / Program

Location of project: United Kingdom

Location of residency: United Kingdom

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Overview:

Areas of Support
TOE2 aims to support projects in 3 main areas:
  • Promote and improve the biodiversity of Oxfordshire’s wildlife habitats
  • Encourage and develop projects that contribute to the low carbon agenda, including the sustainable use of renewable resources and energy efficiency in community facilities
  • Increase access to the local countryside and green spaces
Education and community involvement are seen as key across all three funding areas.

Biodiversity

Biological diversity is the variety of life and its processes; it includes the variety of living organisms, the genetic differences among them and the communities and ecosystems in which they occur. Grants are available to support work that improves the quality, quantity or coverage of voluntary recording in Berkshire or Oxfordshire.

TOE2 can support projects that:
  • Improve the overall biodiversity of habitats including woodlands, ponds, rivers, meadows, green spaces and the wider countryside.
  • Improve the quality, quantity and/or coverage of voluntary species recording in Berkshire and Oxfordshire.
  • Improve breeding or habitat conditions for particular species, eg; planting nectar rich plants for bumblebees. 
  • Expand the biodiversity resource within the 36 ConservationTarget Areas (CTAs).
    • More information on CTAs is availalbe here
All biodiversity projects should at their core aim to bring about actual practical improvements to biodiversity on a local scale and they should all demonstrably fit within the wider County or national strategy for biodiversity.

Funding theme: Encouraging Bumblebees
TOE2 would like to help raise the profile of the bumblebee in Oxfordshire. Bumblebees are not as numerous  or widespread as you might expect. Changes in land management mean there are less and less wildflowers in the landscape, and many bumblebee species and other pollinators are struggling to survive.

TOE2 can make funds available for projects which benefit bumblebees and other invertebrates by planting native flowers and shrubs in suitable natural habitats and also planting nectar-rich non-native species in more urban locations. If you are already planning to submit a biodiversity application to TOE2, do consider whether you can increase the scope of your project by creating opportunities for bumblebees, which will
also benefit other pollinators as well. 

Low Carbon Agenda
With increasing concern about climate change, there is a groundswell of interest in the area of renewable resources and there are many active local groups in Oxfordshire. TOE2 wishes to promote existing imaginative and effective schemes and help to inspire more local communities to get involved with making better use of resources and reducing their carbon footprint.

TOE2 will only support renewable energy projects at community buildings where energy efficiency improvements have already been implemented.

Examples that TOE2 might support include:
  • Making community buildings more energy efficient; please note that projects must be identified through an energy audit.
  • Develop renewable energy projects for community facilities; where there are direct community benefits and profits go back to the community
  • Produce wood fuel through managing local woods for biodiversity
  • Encourage the reduction, reuse and recycling of waste
  • Increase awareness of how communities can reduce their carbon footprint
  • Improve water efficiency
  • Encourage and promote more sustainable transport options
  • Promote, produce or distribute local food and reduce food miles

Access to Green Spaces and the Countryside

We believe that everyone, including the elderly and those with reduced mobility, should be able to enjoy accessing and exploring Oxfordshire’s countryside and green spaces for recreation and enjoyment, with all the health and well-being benefits this brings. TOE2 supports projects which improve access to local sites as well as the wider countryside and strategic routes, and projects that fit within Oxfordshire County Council’s Rights of Way Management Plan (RoWMP) 2015-2025.

TOE2 will support projects which improve the accessibility and quality of the rights of way network, including:

  • Creating new links, circular routes and traffic-free routes
  • Replacing stiles with gates
  • Improving path surfaces
  • Improving signs and route-marking
  • Promoting the wider use of the countryside and green spaces, and linking with local facilities.

The primary aim of all projects should be to bring about actual physical improvements to public rights of way, permissive routes, cycle tracks, access land, community-owned areas, nature reserves and country parks. 

You can learn more about this opportunity by visiting the funder's website.

Eligibility:

  • TOE2 can fund not for profit organisations including voluntary groups, Parish Councils, charities and Community Interest Companies.
  • Local Authorities such as County and District Councils may also apply for grants, but TOE2 generally prefers applications to be submitted by local community groups or charities.
  • TOE2’s priority is to support projects located in Oxfordshire, but consideration can be given to projects which straddle county boundaries or which benefit communities in Oxfordshire and its immediate neighbourhood.
  • Projects to be funded with landfill tax credits must be less than 10 miles from a registered landfill site. 
  • TOE2 generally only funds projects at sites where there is some level of public access.
    • Please note that any projects funded through the Landfill Communities Fund must have public access for a minimum of 2 days or 4 evenings a week unless they are biodiversity projects which are addressing the needs of a priority habitat or species.
  • Biodiversity Projects:
    • Projects aimed solely at awareness raising or education will not qualify for a grant unless this is demonstrably part of a larger biodiversity scheme aiming to bring about actual biodiversity benefits.
      • As a guide, we suggest that you limit any of these elements to 25% or less of the overall grant request.
    • Projects involving surveys of habitats or species or the production of management plans will only be eligible where they are part of a larger scheme that will lead to advances in our understanding of species and habitat requirements or direct improvements to biodiversity.
  • Access Projects:
    • Please note that where permissive paths are concerned there should be some form of written agreement in place with the landowner, confirming at least three years of public use.
    • We will only grant aid the provision of signage, route marking, information or interpretation if they are part of a wider scheme for physically improving access.
      • As a guide we suggest that you limit any of these elements to 25% or less of the overall grant request. 

Preferences:

  • TOE2 is keen to see its funds distributed across the county; we are unlikely to support several projects within one community.

Ineligibility:

  • We do not generally fund land purchase projects but can consider them for some funding streams; contact us for further information. 
  • We cannot fund projects which are fulfilling a statutory requirement or a requirement of planning permission. 
  • We prefer not to fund the production of leaflets. 
  • We do not fund revenue costs alone, but can support a proportion of revenue costs which are required to support the delivery of practical projects. 
  • TOE2 cannot accept applications from projects which might result in local disagreement so please ensure that any areas of potential conflict are resolved prior to submitting an application.
  • TOE2 cannot accept applications from projects which have already started.