£32,000 for community transport projects to help rural areas

North Norfolk Community Transport (NNCT) passengers take a trip on the charity's new minibus. NNCT w

North Norfolk Community Transport (NNCT) passengers take a trip on the charity's new minibus. NNCT was awarded £24,000 by the council. Photo: KAREN BETHELL - Credit: Archant

A cash boost to community transport projects, worth £32,000, will help people living in rural communities in north Norfolk.

Grants have been awarded by North Norfolk District Council under a scheme designed to help vulnerable, disadvantaged and isolated residents access the services and facilities they need.

The council's Community Transport Fund (CTF) is supporting three projects that have successfully applied for funding. The projects are available to eligible residents of any age and the scheme remains open to new applications ahead of the next round of funding.

Aylsham & District Care Trust has been awarded £7,000 towards its minibus and volunteer car service. The grant will enable the schemes to expand their geographical area of operation to include specific additional parishes in north Norfolk.

Meanwhile, Burnham Market Area Community Car Scheme has been awarded £1,000 to provide transport for medical appointments and to extend its car scheme service to include Barsham.

And North Norfolk Community Transport has been awarded £24,000. Half of this money is going towards the establishment of a volunteer car scheme to enable patients who are registered with Cromer medical practice and who don't have access to other transport to attend medical appointments, social events, employment opportunities and leisure opportunities, as well as health and wellbeing activities. The rest is going towards an expansion of the Dial a Ride Scheme.

John Lee, Leader of the Council, said: 'I'm delighted we can offer this vital support to some of our most isolated residents.

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'I'd encourage other suitable projects to consider applying for this funding, as we are always keen to improve access and mobility for people who might otherwise be cut off from the wider community.'

Any voluntary organisation that provides or wishes to set up a community transport service in North Norfolk is encouraged to apply for a grant.

Applications to the CTF can be submitted at any time, and decisions on applications will be made in March, July and November. To be considered this November, applications need to be submitted by October 26.

For more information or to apply for a grant, visit www.north-norfolk.gov.uk and search for community transport fund.