New Report: HS2 Community & Business Funds Annual Review 2022/23

Groundwork UK, independent administrators of the HS2 Community and Environment Fund (CEF) and Business and Local Economy Fund (BLEF) have released the HS2 Funds Annual Review for 2022/23.

In the last year, over £2m has been awarded to 39 CEF and BLEF projects that support communities and businesses along Phase One and Phase 2a of the route. Since 2017, the programme has funded 236 projects to the tune of over £13.4m.

The report highlights some of the impactful projects that have been funded via the programme, including Brackley Town Football Club that received £75,000 to rebuild their fire damaged club house.

We now have a magnificent building which is the centrepiece not only for the club, but also for the community of Brackley and the surrounding area. This would not have been possible without the help of HS2 and the grant they provided us. On behalf of Brackley Town Football Club thank you for all the support you have given us and continue to do so which has enabled us to continue the good work we do in the community.

Francis Oliver, Brackley Town Football Club Chairman

In the West Midlands, Open Door Community Foundation received £74,832 for ‘The Pantry Project’ that offers a food bank to the local community, all while promoting and supporting people to cook healthy, low-cost meals.

The Pantry remains a vital lifeline in our community, not just for food, but also for social connection and friendship, practical support with livelihood challenges, and a warm welcome where people feel they belong, and that sustains and supports people’s physical and mental health.

Reverend Dr Al Barrett, Open Door Community Foundation Trustee

Ruislip Northwood Old Folks Association in London have also received CEF funding to support their lunch and social clubs offering for people aged 60 and over to improve the health and wellbeing of attendees.

Since coming to the Club I have found lots of friends and enjoy a first-class meal with the company of others. It has made such a big difference to me after the Covid lockdowns when I was on my own.

John, project participant

It’s great to see the positive impact that the Funds are continuing to have on local people and places and providing much-needed resource to local community organisations

Graham Duxbury, Groundwork’s UK Chief Executive

It’s fantastic to see that the CEF & BLEF have been able to provide over £2 million of funding this year to communities along the line of route. I have been lucky enough to visit several projects over the last six years, from brand new playgrounds to environmental regeneration initiatives; it’s clear to see the significant difference the funding provides. Designed to bring benefit to communities experiencing disruption from the construction of HS2, CEF & BLEF will continue to support outstanding community and environmental projects and support community groups to be ambitious in their goals for the future.

Cathy Elliott, Independent Chair of the HS2 Funds