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Country News - 2002

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Shock, horror: Government giving away money
Wednesday 15 May

ALTHOUGH it might take some believing, the Government is anxious to give away money to country villages which have plans for projects will help improve community life.

Two rural grant giving bodies, the Countryside Agency and UKVillages.co.uk joined forces this week and issued an appeal for country folk to come forward and ask for some of the millions of pounds on offer for projects ranging in cost from £25,000 down to £500.

The cash is available for a wide variety of projects, from supporting the local shop and bus service down to knitting groups and baby-sitting circles.

Nick Holliday, head of the Countryside Agency's Vital Villages team, commented: "It is extremely important that people in our rural communities know that money is available to them for local projects for improving services and community facilities."

The sums available are substantial: the Countryside Agency has handed out some "9 million in grants in the past year. Anyone with an idea for improving village life should log onto www.countryside.gov.uk/vitalvillages

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