The Community Ownership Fund Awards £2.9M to Protect Vital Assets Across Northern Ireland

Development Trusts NI (DTNI) proudly announces that DLUHC, the administrators of the Community Ownership Fund, has allocated £2,898,740 to eight community groups in Northern Ireland. This funding ensures the preservation of critical local community facilities for future generations. Empowering these groups to assume ownership or develop assets crucial to community life is at the heart of this initiative.

The £150m Community Ownership Fund (COF) is designed to aid communities across the UK in acquiring assets at risk of closure. DTNI serves as the official delivery partner in Northern Ireland for the Community Ownership Fund support programme, which has attracted £8.1 million to fund 31 projects in the region.

The projects receiving an investment include:

  • Oh Yeah Music Centre (£850,000) – Acquisition of the renowned music venue.
  • Broughshane and District Community Organisation (£300,000) – Development of the Community Centre hub
  • Forth Spring Inter Community Group (£168,000) – Acquisition of a community building
  • In Your Space Circus Ltd (£601,540) – IYSC Cathedral School circus arts project
  • Newcastle Football Club (£274,000) – A sporting home for the club
  • Omagh Community House Limited (£259,200) – Acquisition of Omagh Community House
  • Pepper Johns Memorial (£96,000) – Revitalisation of former Down Recorder printing rooms.
  • Women’s Aid Armagh Down Ltd (£350,000) – ELEOS Project

Margaret Craig, COF Project Manager for NI and Senior Programme Coordinator at DTNI, emphasised, “This vital funding will protect facilities that are absolutely essential to the fabric of local communities across Northern Ireland. From vital community hubs to beloved arts and sports venues, these grants will ensure such valued assets remain in community ownership for many years to come.”

The £2.9M awarded to Northern Ireland is part of a £33.5M package announced by the UK Government to preserve over 80 community assets nationwide, including iconic music venues, cinemas, pubs, and sports clubs. Across the UK, the fund has now granted over £103M to 333 projects.

The announcement coincides with the launch of the Community Ownership Fund’s 4th and final round, featuring two bidding windows for communities to apply for up to £2M in capital and £50K in revenue funding. Window 1 opens on 25 March and closes on 10 April 2024.

For more information and application details for Round 4, please visit the Community Ownership Fund Round 4 Prospectus Page on the UK government website.


Margaret Craig

COF Project Manager, Senior Programme Coordinator DTNI