Yorkshire Dales communities affected by quarrying are being urged to act quickly to obtain grants available to help mitigate the noise and traffic created by one of the area’s key industries.
Quarrying has been a subject of controversy for many years, particularly amongst the thousands of newcomers who have moved in from suburban areas, but since the decline of jobs in farming has become one of the key providers of employment for locals.
In an attempt to mitigate some of the problems caused by quarry traffic and the noise of shot-firing, the North Yorkshire Aggregates Grants Scheme has re-opened for its final round of applications this year.
Communities, organisations, private landholders and local councils are being invited to apply for grants of up to £20,000 to implement a range of projects that compensate for the impacts of quarrying. Projects must be completed by the end of March 2011, so applicants are being urged to act now to secure funds.
To be successful projects should deliver clear public benefits and have support from local communities. They should be within 5km of an active quarry, 2km of a dormant quarry or alongside a major transport route. Priority will be given to projects which encourage community participation and those that conserve and enhance the natural and built environments.
Funding for the scheme is provided by Central Government through the North Yorkshire Strategic Partnership. This partnership is led by North Yorkshire County Council and brings public, voluntary and business sectors together to work for the wellbeing of the County’s communities. The partnership’s primary objective is to deliver genuinely sustainable communities through better outcomes for local people.
The partnership has already provided £306,000 to projects in North Yorkshire in 2009/10 with income generated through the Aggregates Levy. The levy was introduced by the Government to reduce demand for primary aggregates by making them more costly and make the use of recycled and secondary materials more viable.
Expressions of interest must be received by 1st October 2010. Projects will then be assessed and successful ones will be invited to complete a full application for submission by 5th November 2010. Forms are available from Chris Lodge at Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust, who administers the Scheme. Please contact 015242 51002.