Hawick groups vying to land shares of £30,000 handout kitty

Kenny Harrow, a community learning development worker for Scottish Borders Council, with steering group member Leighann Rowley.
Kenny Harrow, a community learning development worker for Scottish Borders Council, with steering group member Leighann Rowley.

Voters will go to the polls in Burnfoot later this month, with the victors set to share a £30,000 windfall.

Community group Burnfoot Bids Together is inviting residents of the Hawick estate to vote for their favourites out of 25 projects shortlisted to split a funding pot available to support local clubs, groups and organisations.

The funding was secured by Burnfoot Community Futures for distribution to groups that either operate in Burnfoot or benefit the community there in some way.

More than 40 responses were received, giving the steering group the unenviable task of picking 25 to go through to the final voting stage.

Now the votes are to be cast during a family fun day at Burnfoot Community School on Sunday, March 19, from 11am to 5pm.

Steering group member Leighann Rowley said: “We were amazed and delighted at the response.

“We received a much higher number of applications than we expected, with some really great groups and existing projects applying.

“It was a very difficult task to shortlist, but now we’re at the next stage of planning and organising an event to allow the community to vote for those which they feel are most deserving of a share of the funding.”

There are a variety of projects to vote for, including groups for children, adults and older people, ranging from knitting circles to job clubs and mental health-related support organisations to a memorial project.

Leighann added: “What we need is for the people of Burnfoot to do what they do best and come out on March 19 and support their local community by casting their votes.

“There will be an opportunity to listen to presentations from each of the shortlisted bids before voting for the ones that people think would be of most benefit.

“We’ll be making the day as entertaining as possible, with fun activities for children to enjoy, music throughout and an acoustic set from Pyre, a covers band.

“It’s sure to be an enjoyable family day.”

The project is supported by Kenny Harrow, a worker for Scottish Borders Council’s community learning and development team.

Selkirkshire councillor Vicky Davidson, the council’s executive member for culture, sport and community learning, added: “This is a wonderful example of a local community coming together to support each other.

“It cannot have been easy to choose which projects to have put through to the next round, with another exciting challenge ahead when residents are asked to choose their favourites.

“I have no doubt they will make the right decision.

“Whatever projects are chosen will make a significant difference to the people of Burnfoot.”