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The Neighbourhood Keepers programme

The Neighbourhood Keepers programme is a community initiative, developed by the Church Street Futures Group and other working groups in the context of the Church Street regeneration.

It aims to deliver health, wellbeing and environmental benefits for all residents of the Church Street area. Between 2017 and 2022, Westminster City Council is committed to grant £2,000,000 for projects taking place in the Church Street ward itself, as well as on the Paddington Green estate. 

1. About the fund

We seek to award grants from £200 to £20,000 to organisations or individuals to deliver health and wellbeing or environmental activities taking place between 6 April 2019 and the 21 July 2020 (end of school term). Specifically, we are looking for projects for teenagers, projects around mental health, edible planting, gardening, healthy cooking sessions, food waste recycling or food waste awareness campaigns or environmental projects involving bat boxes, bird houses or other wildlife hubs for local people of all ages and backgrounds to take part in.

Applications might propose one of the above activities or a combination of them, a festival, outdoor event or something completely new.

We want to receive innovative project proposals that:

  • directly benefit the local Church Street ward and its residents
  • involve the local Church Street ward residents - to prove this, you must collect participants’ postcodes where you're able to
  • encourage greater local engagement in physical and environmental activities
  • make use of the area’s existing and new outdoor spaces

Background information

It is essential that you have a look at the Neighbourhood Keepers brochure, which contains information about the ward, the Church Street Regeneration programme and the role of the Neighbourhood Keepers programme within it.

Neighbourhood Keepers brochure

Church Street room hire timetable

Local schools in the area

Church Street ward profile including ward boundary map

List of Paddington Green estate blocks (PDF, 130KB)

Past projects

Neighbourhood Keepers Taster Weekend

2. Who can apply

The local community, organisations, individuals and Church Street residents can submit applications for funding for health and wellbeing or environmental projects.

Individuals and organisations based in the Church Street ward will be prioritised.

Age ranges

Individuals between 16 to 18 years old can apply, but will be required to have an adult with a current DBS certificate present while delivering their project. They also need the support of a guarantor. For example, City of Westminster College students could be backed by the college.

Individuals over 18 may apply with the support of a partnership organisation, which could be the venue or a professional facilitator. The guarantor would be the recipient of the funds, rather than the individual. We cannot accept applications from departments within local authorities. Applicants working in partnership with libraries or schools, for example, should submit the application.

3. What we fund

We will fund positive activities that address health, wellbeing and the environment.

These could be activities that have a direct public benefit for residents of the Church Street ward and Paddington Green estate. They are to be delivered free of charge.

  • sports activities
  • healthy cooking sessions
  • gardening sessions, seed banks, edible planting and so on
  • food waste recycling and awareness
  • women or girls only activities (sports, coffee mornings, and so on)
  • health and wellbeing sessions for parents and babies/toddlers/school children
  • games hub for adults, young adults and children – accessible for wheelchair users
  • bat boxes, bird houses and other wildlife hubs

A focus will be children of all ages, adolescents and their families, and we encourage you to work closely with the local schools and youth organisations. If you plan an event for children, your staff must have a valid DBS check.

You can apply for up to £25,000 per project, although we think the average award will be around £10,000. Projects applying for the maximum amount should run for at least 12 months. The minimum amount of funding you can apply for is £200.

We reserve the right to offer part-funding to some projects, if the assessment panel feel it is in the best interest of the programme’s aims.

We can help 

We will support: 

  • professional fees and materials
  • administration and staff costs for management, planning and delivery of the project
  • venue hire 
  • licensing, event notices and road closure costs (it will strengthen your application to have relevant permissions in place when you apply, but it isn't required)
  • publicity and marketing costs
  • costs for training volunteers
  • costs to make the activity more accessible to participants

Equipment may be purchased on condition that is used by the beneficiaries. It will remain with the beneficiary group or organisation once the project has ended, for its continuous use by said groups. This must be agreed with the fund manager prior to purchase (a valid original receipt of purchase will be required).

All equipment purchased through the Neighbourhood Keepers programme is wholly owned by Westminster City Council.

4. What we cannot fund

We cannot support:

  • projects that don't have a strong health and wellbeing or environmental component as their primary motive or activity
  • projects that take place outside the Edgware Road Housing Zone, i.e. the Church Street ward and/or Paddington Green estate
  • capital works on premises
  • purchase of equipment, unless specifically used and retained by the beneficiaries 
  • activities that promote political, religious or extremist views
  • regular core running costs, loan repayments or VAT
  • activities that have no public benefit for residents
  • ‘Business as usual’ activities (such as normal maintenance or repairs, or projects that continue existing activities)
  • activities that won't happen between April 2019 and July 2020

5. How to apply

The deadline for the 2019 application round is Monday 18 February 2019 at 5pm. At this stage, Westminster City Council will commission projects that run between 6 April 2019 and 21 July 2020, allowing organisers to plan activities for the 2019/20 school year.
There is no maximum number of times you can apply to the fund, but please be aware that, in the interests of fairness, the panel will take the overall amount of funding awarded to individuals or organisations into consideration when assessing further bids. 

Step 1

Please read the relevant documents provided in the section 'About the fund' and consider whether your project is suitable. We encourage you to contact the regeneration base on churchstreet@westminster.gov.uk or 020 7641 2968 (ask for Kat or Abdul) for a short informal discussion of your project idea.

Step 2 

If encouraged to apply, complete the online application form below, providing detailed information on your project, by 5pm on Monday 18 February 2019. 

You will need to prepare the following supporting documents: 

  • a brief project plan and timeline 
  • 2 letters of reference or support from a reliable source – one of these can be your guarantor if the applicant is an individual 
  • a letter of agreement signed by all partners taking part in the project or the supporting guarantor 
  • for funding above £5,000, where the applicant is an organisation, a copy of your most recent audited annual accounts - these mustn't be more than 2 years old 
  • a financial projections template to let us know how much you're planning to spend 
  • enhanced DBS certificates for all staff who will be working unsupervised with children, or proof of DBS application before the start of the project 
  • your public liability certificate (minimum indemnity of £2 million) or your employer's liability certificate

Step 3


6. Application deadlines and assessment

The application deadline is on 5pm on Monday 18 February 2019. There will be another opportunity to submit an application in October 2019. 

Decisions will be made at an assessment panel meeting. To assess the final applications, the panel will meet 1 to 2 weeks after the closing date.

If your application is successful, you will be required to sign a 'project agreement'. After that, it will take at least 30 days for the first payment to be processed.


Your application will be assessed using the following weighted criteria:

  • 10% local connections/added value – points will be awarded to applicants who have existing links in the Church Street area
  • 25% local impact – points will be awarded to applicants who appropriately consider the area’s socio-economic dynamics and clearly address these with their project
  • 25% delivery approach – points will be awarded to applicants who have clearly demonstrated that their project is achievable, and what steps they will take to ensure its delivery
  • 40% value for money – points will be awarded to applicants whose offer is competitive, i.e. within market value range of similar activities 
Last updated: 10 October 2019