West Oxfordshire Council funds charity’s new community hub in Chipping Norton

West Oxfordshire Council has has approved a £50,000 grant to The Branch Trust charity to set up a community hub in Chipping Norton.
Cllr Joy Aitman alongside founder of The Branch Trust Emma Kennedy.Cllr Joy Aitman alongside founder of The Branch Trust Emma Kennedy.
Cllr Joy Aitman alongside founder of The Branch Trust Emma Kennedy.

The funding has been provided through the council’s Community Facilities Grant Scheme, which local organisations can apply for to get funding to improve buildings and other facilities that help the local community operate.

Cllr Joy Aitman, cabinet member for stronger, healthy communities, said: "I am really pleased we are able to support groups to improve local facilities through this funding.

"The Branch Trust is setting up a community hub to help local people access skills and courses, along with providing a space in Chipping Norton for the community to use as a whole.

"They have worked really hard on this project and have pulled together funding from a number of places to make this project a reality. I’m glad our funding will contribute to that and help make this a successful scheme for Chipping Norton and the surrounding villages."

Over the past three years, the council has given out £476,867 in project funding to 25 community groups in West Oxfordshire, supporting them with funding where otherwise they might have struggled to raise their own funds.

Emma Kennedy, of The Branch Trust said: "We are thrilled to have received this grant. Having worked in collaboration with West Oxfordshire District Council for the past five years, we are delighted the Council recognises the need for a Community Hub in Chipping Norton and are supporting the construction of a Community Hall.

"The Community Hall will be an essential flexible space that will accommodate youth activities and courses working in collaboration with voluntary & statutory services to work holistically with individuals and families. There will also be talks for all sectors of the community.

"It will include a community kitchen with 10 cooking stations, enabling vital cookery skills training for young people and adults, plus the mental health benefits associated with cooking."