Focus: Fundraising - How we got the grant - Cumbria Wildlife Trust

Helen Haydock, funding and development manager, Cumbria Wildlife Trust

Why did you apply to this trust? This is the largest peat bog restoration in England, and GrantScape is an environmental grant-making charity that recently announced funds as part of its new Biodiversity Challenge 2005 under the Landfill Tax Credits Scheme.

We found out about it at a training course with another landfill operator, which suggested GrantScape. We called and realised our project to restore Foulshaw was ideal because the site is nationally important for its rare and threatened wildlife. As the fund is new, we had no experience of applying, but were familiar with landfill tax funding.

What did the application process involve? We completed a 10-page application form and business plan. We also had to complete a separate form for the project to be registered with the landfill regulator. The application was checked to ensure it met the landfill tax requirements before being assessed against the other 32 applications. Landfill tax funding requires projects to pay 10 per cent of the grant awarded in third-party contributions.

This was the hardest part of the application, but we secured £47,000 through an appeal to our donors, corporate members and partner organisations.

Is part of the money for infrastructure or training? Our grant covers staff costs, training and all other overhead costs.

Did you apply to other funders? We did send expressions of interest to other funders, but our project fitted the criteria of the Biodiversity Challenge Fund so well that we made this fund our top priority.

Why we gave the grant

Matt Young, senior grant manager, GrantScape

This project met all our criteria for the grant. It is a fantastic opportunity to preserve this type of reserve.

The biodiversity of the nature reserve was at an extremely high level, and not only will this restoration help the environment, but the creation of new footpaths in the reserve will enable people to visit it.

Aspects of the project also include the creation of reed beds, woodland management, species conservation and monitoring of the site.

All of these will help the biodiversity of the area improve.

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