The “Village Hub” In Winterbourne Stoke Gets Boost To Help Create A More Connected And Resilient Community Thanks To National Lottery And IKEA Funding

Photo of the Village Snug with IKEA and National Lottery Community Fund logos
The Village Snug

The Parish Council has been delighted to hear of the success of the St Peter’s churchwardens in winning some grant funding to support the “Village Snug”; a joint initiative between the church and the Village Preservation Society.  The following Press release says it all very eloquently:

The “Village Hub” in St Peter’s Church, Winterbourne Stoke is celebrating today after being awarded £5,000 in funding from The National Lottery Community Fund and IKEA UK, as part of the £1.5million pilot programme, Places Called Home.

The pilot programme from the largest funder of community activity and world’s largest home furnishing retailer, is supporting more than 330 local communities across the UK with grants of up to £5,000 to build back better and differently as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic. The Places Called Home programme builds on the energy and creativity of communities coming together during the crisis to support each other and aims to inspire them to take action around healthy and sustainable living, while learning from each other and building meaningful connections.

The grant, applied for by St Peter’s Church, is to fund the setting up of the Village Hub, an initiative set up in partnership between the church and the Village Preservation Society (VPS), to provide a focal point for the whole community and a place where everyone is welcome.

The grant will be used to buy furniture, equipment and materials for the “Snug” in the vestry (the smaller of the two rooms, where the Book Club and the Make, Do and Mend Sewing Club already meet once a month), to make it a warm and comfortable space for clubs to meet; and equip the existing kitchen area, which has seating around two large tables and is ideal for bigger groups, with all the necessary facilities to be able to host coffee mornings, Film Nights and a wide variety of other events to bring the village together.

Olivia Dutton, Churchwarden, said: “Thanks to National Lottery players and IKEA we can transform two small rooms within the church into a wonderful village asset and build on the team spirit and excellent initiatives that started as a result of the COVID pandemic to bring the village together. We want to reach out to the whole community and welcome everyone. Enhancing and making better use of these spaces will mean that we can hold events that appeal to and cater for all ages, supporting the health & wellbeing of the elderly residents and getting the young families more involved. This is a very exciting project for our whole village community!”

Alongside the funding, with £1million made possible thanks to National Lottery players, all community groups that applied have now been invited to a virtual learning and support programme, created by Participatory City Foundation.

Emma Ackerman, Funding Strategy Director at The National Lottery Community Fund said: “As we recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, it is clear that we can build on the energy and creativity we’ve seen to make stronger communities and a better everyday life. We’re delighted that together with IKEA and National Lottery players we have been able to support this across the UK with our pilot partnership and funding announced today.”

Hege Saebjornsen, Partnership Advisor at Ingka Group said:The COVID-19 outbreak has demonstrated how fragile the world is, reinforcing the need for collective resilience – for our neighbourhoods, our communities and our planet. Through this programme, we have an opportunity to make sustainable and healthy living accessible and affordable for everyone while also unleashing the skills, energy and enthusiasm of communities to take part in making a difference every day.”

Places Called Home is a small-scale pilot to test how a partnership between the largest funder of community activity in the UK works with the world’s largest home furnishing retailer.

Well done all who have been involved in setting this facility up and in volunteering their time and effort during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Winterbourne Stoke Parish Council