The Deputy Minister announced the funding during a visit to Hightown Community Centre in Wrexham today (Friday 9 November). It will mean the creation of a new Communities First Partnership in the Hightown area of the town.
The inclusion of this new Communities First area follows its identification in the Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation 2005 as being in the 10% most deprived communities in Wales, but currently without Communities First Status.
The funding will help establish a Communities First team of three staff to work with the local community in drawing up an action plan and developing local solutions to identified issues in partnership with the Local Authority and statutory and voluntary sector organisations. The funding will include nearly £55,000 to support the establishment of a Communities First Office in the area.
Deputy Minister Leighton Andrews said:
The Communities First programme is a long-term strategy for improving opportunities and the quality of life for people living and working in the most disadvantaged communities in Wales. We want to ensure that the support available from the Welsh Assembly Government is targeted at the poorest areas in Wales.
I have visited several Communities First projects in the Wrexham area today and they are all having a significant impact on the local communities through the creation of community facilities and by helping people acquire new skills.
I am pleased to formally admit Hightown into the programme and I am certain that the local community will experience real, tangible benefits from this.
The funding I’ve announced will enable Communities First to become established in this area in preparation for Communities Next – the second phase of the Welsh Assembly Government’s community regeneration programme.
Notes to editors
- The Welsh Index of Multiple Deprivation (WIMD) is the way deprivation is measured in Wales. The Communities First Programme uses the Index to target support at the most deprived areas.
- The Index divides Wales into 1,896 areas and calls these Lower Super Output Areas (LSOAs).
Within the 2005 Index 46 areas (LSOAs) were identified as among the most deprived communities in Wales, but outside the existing Communities First footprint. Following a period of consultation the 46 areas of deprivation were invited to apply for inclusion in the Communities First Programme.
- The Deputy Minister for Regeneration has agreed funding of £278,205.00 for the period 1st December 2007 to 31st March 2009 for the area, which includes one off costs of £54,700.00 relating to the establishment of an office at the local community centre.
- As well as visiting the Hightown Community Centre the deputy Minister for Regeneration Leighton Andrews also spent time at the Memorial Cebtre in Brynteg, Community House in Gwenfro and New 2 You in Wrexham.
9 November 2007