"Portas Pilots" funding for high street projects

Ye have brought this man unto me, as one that perverteth the people; and behold, I, having examined him before you, have found no fault in this man touching those things whereof ye accuse him. 
- Pontius Pilate

The Mayor's office sent us this press release, announcing a competition for funding for "Portas Pilots" - projects designed to rejuvenate local high streets. Obviously, Lewisham groups are welcome to apply.

On the one hand, it sounds like an initiative designed by a PR person; on the other, the Mayor's commitment to funding small scale local projects is the best thing about his tenure. PR people: is there anything they can't do?

The Mayor of London Boris Johnson is calling on community groups to bid for funding to breathe life into their local high streets.

Giving his backing to plans by retail expert Mary Portas to help boost the UK economy, the Mayor has announced an additional £300,000 funding to help increase jobs and growth in three “Portas Pilots” across London.

Local communities are invited to submit ideas in order to receive the funding, with the successful three projects to be announced this summer. The ideas which most transform town centres affected by the economic downturn are likely to win the competition.

The fund is separate from the existing £1.2 million government scheme, and builds on the Mayor's £70 million Regeneration Fund and £50 million Outer London Fund. The selected “Portas pilots” will each receive up to £100,000 to carry out some of the recommendations made by Mary Portas in her review for ministers.

The closing date for entries is the 30th June 2012. Click here to download an application form.