Honiton community groups invited to pitch their ideas before audience at The Beehive to win funding for local projects

A fun networking and community Dragons Den style funding event, with a ‘pot’ of £5,000 given by East Devon District Council, Devon County Council and Honiton Town Council, is taking place at The Beehive in Honiton on Wednesday 29 May from 2pm to 4pm.

The event is part of East Devon District Council’s Honiton Events Week, which runs from 25-31 May 2019 and offers free taster health/wellbeing/cultural events ranging from craft making activities at Thelma Hulbert Gallery to countryside walks and even a screening of the film Christopher Robin.

Participants will have five minutes to pitch their project ideas and funding requirements to an audience who then decide whether to vote in favour of a project receiving funding.

A panel of three to four “dragons” will be on hand to ask participants questions to help the audience make their decisions.

Entrants can apply for as much funding as they want up to £5,000, but if they pitch for the full £5,000 pot, then to win any money, they must convince the majority of the audience that their project is the only one that deserves funding. This is because each audience member will have a ballot card, which only allows them to “spend” up to £5,000.

The £5,000 funding pot comprises £3,000 from Devon County Council’s locality budget, £1,000 from East Devon District Council and £1,000 from Honiton Town Council.

Applicants need to complete and send in a short application form by Monday 6 May 2019. For more information or for an application form, please email Alex Higgins ahiggins@eastdevon.gov.uk or call 07805 813033.

Once the organisers have reviewed all the applications, all the applicants will be notified by Friday 10 May as to whether their project is considered suitable for the Dragons Den. Only projects that the organisers believe will improve the lives of people in Honiton will get invited to the Dragons’ Den. Unsuccessful applicants will also be contacted and told why they were not successful.

The winners must spend the grant within 12 months.

Applicants will need to be a constituted group, which means they will need a governing document. However, it doesn’t mean they have to be legally incorporated.

Applicants should also be aware that the Dragon’s Den event will not fund:

•             Day to day ongoing costs, e.g. salaries, administration, etc. 

•             Services or activities that should be statutory

•             Political activities

•             Animal beneficiaries

•             Private businesses

•             Activities where individuals will directly benefit financially

The event is being organised by East Devon District Council’s Community Development Worker Alex Higgins and Devon County Council’s Development Officer Ali Eastland.

Commenting on the forthcoming event Alex Higgins said:

There is plenty of support from the organisers for applicants – if anyone has any questions, we are on the end of a phone to help people prepare for the Dragons Den event. We would like to encourage as many local community groups as possible to apply and hopefully participate in this fun event.

Councillor John Hart, the Leader of Devon County Council, said:

Having been there recently I know that Honiton is a vibrant town and there are many community groups who could make good use of funding.

These groups are run by members of the community so it’s apt that local residents should help determine who benefits from this funding.