The HPC Community Cohesion Grants Programme addresses intangible and residual community impacts deriving from the construction of Hinkley Point C.
The successful West Somerset Railway application, led by the West Somerset Railway Association, focusses on volunteering and the benefits of personal well-being, community cohesion and economic stability that a volunteering spirit can bring to the community. The West Somerset Railway has a thriving community of over 1000 volunteers with a wide range of backgrounds and skills applied across the whole 23 miles of the railway. This Grants Programme presents the opportunity to extend volunteering opportunities to a wider and more diverse community, as the populations of West Somerset Towns and Villages develop and change with the construction of Hinkley Point C.
The WSRA is one of ten local community groups which have been invited to submit applications to the second stage of the programme. The application will now be developed to demonstrate how the West Somerset Railway will attract new volunteers from a diverse population and facilitate their integration into the community, enabling them to grow in confidence and skills as they make a valuable contribution to a community that becomes their own.
WSR PLC Chairman Ian Coleby said “The West Somerset Railway is an important part of the economy of West Somerset and we welcome this opportunity to extend our family of volunteers and engage with a wider community base”
WSRA Chairman Paul Whitehouse said “As the support charity for the West Somerset Railway we are thrilled to be leading on this project which will benefit individuals, the West Somerset Community, and the railway.”