Ending the year on a high with HLF funding success

As we come towards the end of 2023 we’re breathing a big sigh of relief here at MIC HQ with the news that we were successful in our bid for funding from the National Lottery Heritage Fund. It marks a real milestone for us – two years into this project – as for the first time we actually have the capacity to make our co-created vision a reality.

After several unsuccessful funding bids we have been thrilled to win the support of both the Community Ownership Fund and Heritage Lottery Fund this year, meaning that we can move forward with purchasing Buckfastleigh Methodist Church and refurbishing it for community use. It really does feel like the final piece of the puzzle for this phase of our work, opening the doors to a whole world of potential.

There are lots of other exciting elements of our HLF bid, including establishing a youth advisory board, gathering memories of the building as oral histories with the help of The Bungalow Youth Project and The Valiant Soldier, and a community weaving project led by the Woolly Nanas. We envisage this next phase of the project evolving in close collaboration with the local community, and have lots of thoughts about how we can capture what local people want from this building.

We also have a bank of practitioners in arts, wellness and education who are keen to use the space to provide workshops and classes, and some great ideas for events which will bring folk together in a variety of ways in the months to come. It’s an exciting time for Buckfastleigh, and we have been blown away by all the encouragement and support you have shown us, and all the different ways you have helped us shape this story.

We are entering into the festive season full of gratitude, and mindful too of the human suffering that persists in other corners of the earth. We are hopeful that in a myriad of small ways this project can help to build a better future for us all, and that its impact will ripple out far beyond our little town.

Make sure you’re signed up to our mailing list to keep in the loop of what happens next – and we look forward to welcoming you into the building very soon!

Ending the year on a high with HLF funding success

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