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Community Renewal Fund

The UK Community Renewal Fund is a new government programme for 2021/22. These projects seek to promote community resilience and to also pilot new approaches to support both business and people.

Devon CRF

Devon County has been awarded £9.3m, the largest funding allocation in the UK for a single area. This funding will support 13 innovative projects across Devon over the next six months.

These projects include investment in:

  • Employment and training
  • Business and social enterprise support
  • Environmental initiatives
  • Community resilience

The programme is expected to assist 3,500 individuals to enter new training opportunities, support 350 businesses, and facilitate the creation of up to 800 new jobs.


Councillor Rufus Gilbert, Devon’s Cabinet Member for Economic Recovery and Skills, said:

“This is very good news for people and businesses in Devon.”

“The largest allocation in England is testimony to the good work of the Team Devon partnership. These exciting pilot projects will promote Devon’s green assets and develop the county’s natural capital, provide support for hard hit small businesses and disadvantaged young people and adults, tackle deprivation and disadvantage within Devon’s most vulnerable communities, and support the economic growth of rural and coastal communities.

“Now our collective task must be to crack on and deliver.”

Devon’s Projects include the following:

£1.35m awarded to the Biosphere Foundation to promote sustainable natural environmental development in North Devon.

£650,000 awarded to the Dartington Schools for Social Enterprise to support individuals from harder to reach / disadvantaged backgrounds to start their own social enterprise.

£1.07m to Devon County Council to fund a delegated grant programme to support Devon’ small businesses.

£600,000 to Devon County Council to support those with a disability to access employment.

£585,000 to Devon County Council to support digital skills development.

£503,000 to Devon County Council for agricultural technology innovation.

£500,000 awarded to Mid Devon Mobility to support the development of additional community transport led employment opportunities.

£1m awarded to PETROC College for 2 projects; promoting business innovation and development through new digital technologies; and youth and community activity across Northern Devon, focusing on those harder to reach in rural and coastal communities.

£500,000 awarded to Project Cosmic to provide business support and innovation for the social enterprise / voluntary and community sector.

£250,000 awarded to Project Eden to produce a detailed feasibility study around the launch of a new attraction close to J27 of the M5.

£995,000 awarded to the Retrofit Academy to support training and employment around the retrofit construction sector.

£1.05m awarded to YKTO to support micro business across the County to take up new opportunities emerging following the COVID pandemic.


Project Lead Project Name Webpage Contact Email
The Biosphere Foundation CIC Biosphere https://www.northdevonbiosphere.org.uk/ economy.communityrenewalfund-mailbox@devon.gov.uk
Dartington Schools for Social Entrepreneurs Devon Enterprise Support for Social Entrepreneurs https://www.the-sse.org/courses/devon-social-entrepreneurs-programme/#newsD Southwest@sse.org.uk


Devon County Council Ability Not Disability https://www.learndevon.co.uk/ stuart.hardy@devon.gov.uk
Devon County Council Devon Agri-Tech Accelerator https://www.devon.gov.uk/economy/devon-agri-tech-accelerator-data/ data@devon.gov.uk
Devon County Council Devon Elevation Fund https://www.devon.gov.uk/economy/business-support/current-business-support-projects/devon-elevation-fund-3/ support.bsi@devon.gov.uk
Devon County Council Digital Devon www.digitaldevon.org.uk hello@digitaldevon.org.uk
Mid Devon Mobility Stronger Together http://www.middevonmobility.org.uk/ ceo@middevonmobility.org.uk or hayley@middevonmobility.org.uk
PETROC Innovation for Youth and Community https://www.petroc.ac.uk/employers/partnership-opportunities/ ruth.shippobotham@petroc.ac.uk
PETROC Promoting Innovation and Enterprise https://www.petroc.ac.uk/employers/partnership-opportunities/ edwina.stevenson@petroc.ac.uk
Project Cosmic Velocity – VCSE Devon https://www.cosmic.org.uk/projects/velocity-devon Georgina@cosmic.org.uk
Project Eden Eden Grounds https://www.edenproject.com/new-edens edenprojectinternationalteam@edenproject.com
The Retrofit Academy Retrofit Skills and Business Accelerator https://www.retrofitacademy.org neil@retrofitacademy.org


YTKO Devon Start and Grow www.ytko.com/crf graham.leigh@ytko.com

‘TheUK Community Renewal Fundis a UK Government programme for 2021/22, managed within Devon, by Devon County Council. This fund aims to support people and communities most in need across the UK, to pilot programmes and new approaches to build community resilience and prepare for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund. It invests in skills, community and place, local business, and supporting people into employment. For more information, visit https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/uk-community-renewal-fund- prospectus