Twelve organisations receive a share of £6,000

Dragons have been out in force in Honiton as twelve local organisations competed, Dragons' Den-style, for a share of £6,000.

Each had three minutes to present their pitch in front of Dragons including Devon County Councillor Phil Twiss, Jenny Fish from the Big Lottery, Honiton Town Councillor Mike Jones, and East Devon District council's Community Engagement and Grants Officer, Jamie Buckley.

Devon County Council gave £4,400, Honiton Town Council gave £1,000 and East Devon District Council gave £600.

The Dragon's were asked to pick their top five groups.  But so impressed by all the groups were they, the judges agreed that each would receive equal share of the pot.  All recipients will receive £500.

They include:

  • Open Arms East Devon, a mental wellness programme for adults.
  • Honiton Dementia Action Alliance, to help pay for a dementia nurse in the town.
  • Honiton Over 55s Day Care, to pay for a new dishwasher to replace their current 25 year old machine.
  • Hot Pennies Committee, to buy promotional material and road signage, to continue to local Good Friday tradition.
  • Honiton Millennium Green, to set up a environmental area, Vernon Corner, to encourage insect species and birds.
  • Honiton Baptist Family Church, to buy Lego kits for quiet activity for children attending church.
  • Health and Local Food for Families, (HALFF), for help teach cooking skills to people with mental health difficulties.
  • Action East Devon, to help recruit and train counsellors in Honiton.
  • Thelma Hulbert Gallery, to produce audio descriptions for people with visual impairments, so that they can engage with the gallery and its exhibitions.
  • South West Heritage Trust, for help pay for a mobile display that can be taken to schools and residential/nursing homes, depicting World War 2 photographs and small artefacts from that era.
  • Honiton Community Church, to help fund a project for adults with learning disabilities.
  • East Devon Special Needs Group (SNAG) to help fund a course in mindfulness for adults with a range of disabilities at venues around the town.

The Dragon's funding means that each group stands a better chance to apply for match funding from the Big Lottery.

The event, the fourth Dragon's Den held in the town, was organised by Devon County Council, Action East Devon, and East Devon District Council, and it attracted more applicants than ever before.

Devon County Councillor Phil Twiss, who allocated the DCC funding from his Locality Budget, said:

I can honestly say that I thought that the event was fantastic for giving local organisations the opportunity to bid for much needed funding, and to professionally showcase what they did or planned to do.  It made people aware of the valuable contributions these organisations make to people in East Devon.

 I hope that the informal networking that also took place will evolve in to a more structured way of contributing even more positively to people's lives in East Devon.

Cllr Jill Elson, East Devon District's portfolio holder for Sustainable Homes and Communities, said:

It was a very successful event and it was also valuable for local voluntary groups to meet others to know the wealth of help available for the local community.

Honiton Town Councillor Mike Jones, said:

Honiton Town Council were proud to co-host the recent Dragons Den event. Competition was fierce and public support fantastic.  We should definitely look to make it bigger and better this next time.  Thank you to all who put in so much effort to organise this popular event.  Always willing to breath some more fire next year!