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What do mince pies, walking poles, and ceramic flowers have in common this Christmas?

21st December 2021



We are incredibly proud of our communities across the South West. During 2021 we were inspired, touched and impressed by the many different projects that we supported through our Neighbourhood Fund.

Here’s an extra-Christmassy look at just some of the brilliant work happening right now across our region.

Hill Barton Vale Library

Advent calendars, mince pies and gift giving – Christmas traditions that are shared by us all, and ones that were celebrated by the Hill Barton Vale Library. When they invited us to their Christmas community event, Corinna and her team were busy handing out free children’s books from the little library to everyone at the event. The books were sponsored by our Neighbourhood Fund, and it was wonderful to see them being handed out. The library has been a key part of the estate’s community, especially in spreading the joy of reading through activities, books and more. Why not pop by when you’re next in the area?


Axminster and Lyme Cancer Support

There’s nothing more fun than making your own Christmas decorations, and that’s what Axminster and Lyme Cancer Support did this year by running wreath-making workshops in December. The group make use of the beautiful Devon countryside to run Nordic walking sessions for people recovering from cancer treatments. These sessions are led by a trained instructor and aid in recovery whilst also raising the spirits of patients and their families. The group’s popularity has soured since it started, so much so that it became clear that instead of hiring the Nordic walking poles they use, it would be much better to buy their own. They contacted our Neighbourhood Fund Team and applied for funding for poles and instructor fees. We were very happy to support this cause. So, if you’re in the area and see this group of heroes, make sure to give them a wave of support!


Tresillian Village Improvement Group

Nothing quite says “Christmas time” more than seeing a Christmas Tree lit up, and Tresillian Village did it in style at their Christmas Tree Event this year. Found in Cornwall, the small, hillside village is a close-knit community. The Tresillian Village Improvement Group used some of our Neighbourhood Fund to bring everyone together and enhance the beauty and colour of the village in a creative way. Their project was to create ceramic flowers to put in the village flower boxes during the winter months. They teamed up with a local ceramic artist to run workshops for the locals to make their own flower. We loved their community spirit and we’ll be sure to make special note of the flowers whenever we’re in the area.


Cornwall Air Ambulance

The sound of Christmas Carols on a cold wintry evening is enough to put anyone in the Christmas spirit. We were honoured to be invited along to Cornwall Air Ambulance’s Christmas Concert in December. Unfortunately, because of the rise in COVID cases, this did not go ahead, however, we can still celebrate all their work. Cornwall Air Ambulance used our Neighbourhood Fund to regenerate an area of their charity shop in Bodmin. They were critically aware that their shops bring people together in the community, and wanted a place where volunteers, supporters and shoppers could relax and hold events and activities. To do that they used our fund to install sofas, a TV and tea and coffee facilities in the store and named this space the HeliHub. If you’re in the area, why not pop in and help support all the amazing work this charity does across the South West?


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Do you know of anyone who might benefit from our Neighbourhood Fund next year? If so, please share our page with them - we would love to hear from you!