Northern Rock Foundation increases grant spending

The Northern Rock Foundation has announced a new budget of £11m for 2008 - a £4m increase on last year's cautious spending plans.

The announcement comes after last month’s decision by Chancellor Alistair Darling that the foundation would receive an annual income of £15m over the next three years as part of the Northern Rock bank’s nationalisation deal (Third Sector Online, 18 February).

In the first spending round for this year, trustees have allocated a little more than £1m to 15 organisations in north-east England and Cumbria, including Barnardo’s, Tyneside Rape Crisis Centre and Show Racism the Red Card. They plan to release details of additional funding in May.

“Last autumn, we took the difficult decision to scale back our programmes and we set an initially cautious budget for 2007 of £7m,” said Alastair Balls, chair of the foundation. “We now know that there will be a continued donation from Northern Rock under its new ownership arrangements. This is excellent news and means we can increase our grant-making plans, initially by a further £4m.”

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