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Grants and External Funding

Please use the menu below to access information on grants and external funding news and resources. 

grants and external funding


Open 4 Business Portal

Open 4 business logo image

Carlisle City Council is providing local businesses with free access to its local business support and grant portal provided by Open4Business. This is tailored for the Carlisle area and includes local, regional and national schemes.

Business can also search for funding relevant to their size and sector. To use the portal, you will first need to register with Open4Business.


Grants and Funding

Thomas Wall Trust Reopens Grants Programme for Charities

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Funding for UK registered charities for specific projects or core activities that equip disadvantaged people aged 18 and over with the necessary communication skills for employment.  Expressions of Interest are currently being accepted for consideration at the November 2021 meeting.

Funding to Help UK Communities Connect and Thrive

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Large grants are available to voluntary and community organisations in the United Kingdom for projects that will build stronger connections across communities, and improve the infrastructure and conditions that are needed to strengthen these connections. Grants of up to £300,000 are available, for up to two years.  It is expected that up to 20 awards will be made for the 2021/22 period.  Applications may be made at any time while funding remains available.

Money Saving Expert (MSE) Charity Opens for Second Round of 2021

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Funding for small to medium-sized non-profit organisations for projects focused on building financial capability skills assisting groups who support bereavement, redundancy, retirement, relationship breakdown, homelessness, offenders, and resettlement.  Applications will be accepted from 9am on 1 September until 30 September 2021 (5pm).  Applications will close once the number of accepted applications reaches 40 or by the deadline, whichever is soonest. If the grant round closes early, the application form will NOT be accessible to complete. Applicants are encouraged to apply early and not wait to the deadline.

Launch of Tree Health Pilot Scheme

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The Forestry Commission has opened expressions of interest to pilot a new scheme designed to protect trees from pests and diseases in parts of England.  Expressions of interest may be submitted now. No deadlines have been specified at this stage.

Imminent Deadline for Youth Music Incubator Fund

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Grants are available to businesses, collectives and not-for-profits working in Great Britain's music industries to help create sustainable, meaningful career opportunities for young people aged 18-25, especially those who are currently underrepresented in the sector. The deadline for applications is 20 August 2021 (17:00 BST).

Nationwide Building Society Mutual Respect Grant Fund

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Grants are available to grassroot football clubs in the UK whose activities have increased mutual respect on or off the pitch, to support costs including replacing equipment or completing repair work. The deadline for applications is 11.59pm on 15 August 2021.

Digital Skills for Heritage - Digital Volunteering Funding

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Grants are available to help UK heritage sector organisations or partnerships to establish new digital volunteering opportunities across the sector. Opportunities should focus on digital activities and/or activities that can be carried out at distance.  Application deadline: 16/08/2021

Mental Health Sustainability Fund

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Grants are available to improve sustainability and longevity of not-for-profit groups working in the field of mental health in England.  The deadline for applications is 13 August (midday).

Future Fashion Factory Innovation Funding

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Grants are available for UK businesses operating in the high value fashion and textile industries to support innovative R&D projects.  The deadline for Expressions of Interest is 30 September 2021 (17:00 BST).

Prince’s Countryside Fund Opens for Autumn 2021 Round

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Grants are available for farming and rural communities for projects from across the UK which are working to create resilient rural communities.   From 9 August to 15 September, PCF will be holding PCF grant application surgeries every Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday (14:00 to 15:00). All appointment will be 15 minutes long and need to be booked by sending an email to [email protected].   The deadline for applications is midday on 17 September 2021. 

Walkers and Comic Relief Invite Applications to Their Smiles Fund

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Grants are available to not-for-profit organisations using participation in the arts and comedy to promote positive mental wellbeing in the United Kingdom.  

The deadline for applications is 15 September 2021 (11am).  Zoom Q&A sessions will be held on 11 August, 19 August and 25 August. Full details can be found on the Comic Relief website.


Restarting Communities Fund

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A new Carlisle funding scheme has been launched to help communities come back together post lockdown and to stimulate economic activity in the district.  The window for applications is open between Monday 26 July and Monday 9 August 2021.

Co-op Community Fridge Fund

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Grants are available to non-profit organisations across the UK to establish a new Community Fridge to minimise food waste.  The deadline for applications is 16 August 2021 (9am).

Future Fund: Breakthrough

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A direct co-investment fund aimed at growth stage innovative, R&D-intensive UK companies seeking relatively large investments. The scheme is open for applications on a rolling basis.

Environmental Funders Network – Rapid Response Fund

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Grants are available for groups and organisations in the UK to provide a mechanism for quick responses to unexpected crises and opportunities with potentially significant environmental outcomes.  Applications are accepted on an on-going basis and are reviewed by a small advisory group of funders.

Bellwin Scheme (England)

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Grants to local authorities in England which would otherwise be faced with an undue financial burden as a result of providing relief in response to large-scale emergencies and carrying out immediate work.  Application deadline: None specified

Lake District Foundation - Real Hedge Fund

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Grants are available for individuals, businesses, small charities and community groups for hedgerow restoration, maintenance and planting projects across the Lake District.  The second application window will be open from 1 August (9am) to 31 August 2021 (5pm).

August Deadline for First Round of UK Community Ownership Fund

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The UK Government's £150 million Community Ownership Fund is accepting applications.  Funding is available to charities and community groups in the UK to support them in taking ownership of local assets such as pubs, theatres and parks. The Round One deadline for applications is 13 August 2021.

Additional Funding for Tree Nurseries From England & Wales Supplying Scotland

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Funding is available for tree nurseries from Great Britain that supply trees to Scotland.  One application round will normally be run each year with a closing date of 31 January for the submission of applications. However, an additional application round is being run in 2021 for projects in England and Wales (only), with up to £750,000 of funding available for projects that can be completed by 31 March 2022. The closing date for submission of applications for this round is 31 August 2021.

PHE England’s Reproductive Health, Sexual Health and HIV Innovation Fund Opens for Application

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Grants for voluntary sector and other non-profit organisations to deliver projects aiming to address inequalities and poor sexual and/or reproductive health and HIV outcomes in England.  A webinar will be held on 23 July 2021 (13:00 – 14:00). This event will provide an overview of the application process and the opportunity to ask questions. The event will be recorded. Groups should register their interest by emailing [email protected].  The deadline for applications is 17:00pm on 13 August 2021.

Cumbria Police and Crime Commissioner - Property Fund

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Grants are available to local voluntary and community groups, schools, and parish councils for projects that support the Cumbria Police and Crime Plan and make a difference to their local communities.  To be eligible, projects must meet the following objectives:

  • Provide early intervention and prevention schemes to reduce incidents of offending and reoffending.
  • Help to prevent crime and antisocial behaviour in the local community.
  • Provide support to victims of crime to cope and recover.
  • Create opportunities for children and young people to get involved in extra-curricular activities.
  • Improve support for vulnerable people to help them feel safer.
  • Bring together parts of the community that find it difficult to talk or to access each other.

The deadline to apply is 10 September 2021 (5pm).

Cumberland Building Society Community Fund

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Grants are available for charitable, not-for-profit organisations whose work benefits communities in Cumbria, Dumfriesshire, Lancaster, Preston and Haltwhistle.  The funding can be used for different purposes:

  • Strategic grants are intended to improve or maintain the capacity of organisations promoting the financial health and wellbeing of people. Funding can be used to provide an opportunity to scale up promising innovations and/or improve existing initiatives.
  • Community Grants are aimed at community organisations that are working to improve the life skills, education, employability and enterprise of disadvantaged people or support vulnerable, older people. These are likely to be one-off grants.
Application deadline:  20/08/2021

Cumbria Waste Management Environment Trust

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Grants are available to community groups and organisations for environmental and community projects that are within a 10-mile radius of either Hespin Wood or Flusco Pike landfill sites (in parts of Eden, Carlisle and Allerdale).  The funding is only for projects falling under the following categories:

  • OBJECT D - To promote, undertake, fund and assist the provision, maintenance or improvement of public parks or other public amenities, provided that it is for the protection of the environment, and the maintenance, repair or restoration of buildings or other structures open to the public.
    • Examples: Village halls, children’s play equipment, village greens, museums, country parks, community gardens, woodland improvements, cycle paths, public rights of way footpaths and nature reserves
  • OBJECT Da - To promote, undertake, fund and assist the protection of the environment by the conservation or promotion of biological diversity through:
    • (a) the provision, conservation, restoration or enhancement of a natural habitat; or
    • (b) the maintenance or recovery of a species in its natural habitat, on land or in water
  • OBJECT E - Places of religious worship, or of historic or architectural interest, provided it is for the protection of the environment. Object E grants are limited to a maximum of £5,000 request.

The next application deadlines are:

  • 14 September 2021
  • 11 January 2022

eBay for Business Awards

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Financial awards and expert help are available to operators of eBay businesses to support the growth and development of their business.  The deadline for entries is 2 August 2021 (23:59 BST).

Super-deduction Capital Allowance

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A UK Government tax credit initiative to encourage firms to invest in productivity-enhancing plant and machinery assets that will help them grow and to make investments. Support can be accessed at any time.

UK Clean Growth Innovation Fund

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An invitation-only programme for UK businesses that will fund innovative projects that can speed up the development of a sustainable energy transition.  Application is by invitation-only.  Contact ENGIE for further information and to discuss eligibility for invitation.

15K for 15 Years Competition

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A competition for individuals aged 18-25 from the UK or Ireland to create a piece of film content on a subject of their choice.  Applications must be submitted by email by the deadline of 13 August 2021.

Culture Recovery Fund: Emergency Resource Support Launches Today!

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Grants are available for England’s cultural organisations, across all sectors, that were previously solvent but now find themselves financially at-risk because of the impacts of coronavirus restrictions.  The application portal will open for full applications on 15 July 2021 and close on 14 October 2021.


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