Following our meeting with Anne Sherriff, from Local Trust who was assigned as the assessor of BBL’s latest 2 year plan for 2021 to 2023.

Her feedback was as follows:

Thank you for welcoming me to your meeting on 11 March, and for your thoughtful and reflective comments. I really enjoyed meeting all of you.

As I explained when we met, I was impressed by your plan, and felt the Community Consultation and Legacy sections were exceptionally well done. Although most of our discussion focused on other aspects of the Plan I would not want this to dilute how notable I found those two sections. Congratulations, and keep up the good work.

I particularly liked your website, which is clear and concise, and your newsletters. You clearly understand the vital importance of keeping the wider community informed, and your use of social media means that they can offer feedback too.

Your Plan draws on evidence from a range of sources, your own consultations, observations and local knowledge, underpinned by statistical data.

Your action plan is clear and well thought out. You explained to me why there were some gaps in identifying delivery partners and I can see why this is the case. You have done well to create a credible and deliverable plan, whilst retaining a degree of flexibility to take account of the COVID pandemic.

You have clearly built up constructive relationships with a range of delivery partners and feel you can rely on them, with the additional protection offered by your SLAs and monitoring and reporting procedures.

You were mindful of the need to ensure you do, indeed, spend all the money you have sought to draw down and were able to demonstrate contingency plans should some of your schemes fail to deliver or not be possible. I would urge you to continue to monitor this with your customary meticulous scrutiny and to take prompt action to redistribute funds if slippage occurs.

Your partnership struck me as being competent and efficient, a safe pair of hands. Although much of the proposed activity is a continuation of what you already do, you will be stepping up a gear to accelerate spend, so this is an ambitious and aspirational plan as well as a secure one. Your confidence and enthusiasm was readily apparent when we met, and I wish you every success in your future work.

Next steps

After the assessors’ review, Local Trust made the final decision on whether to sign off on our plan and release the funds for our 2021-2023 plan.

On the 26th March we received the following confirmation from Chris Falconer, Head of Programme Delivery at the Local Trust:

I’m pleased to let you know that we have approved grant funding to you of £393,068.41 for the period 26 March 2021 to 31 March 2023, and this grant offer is valid from 26 March 2021.

This money will be invested in line with our latest 2021-2023 plan, learn more about this here.