About Devonshire West Big Local
£1m / 10 years / our community
Devonshire West Big Local is a resident run, lottery funded organisation which aims to make Devonshire West a better place to live and work.
In 2012 the Big Lottery Fund provided Devonshire West Big Local with £1 million to spend over 10 years to better our community.
Where is Devonshire West?
In the heart of Eastbourne, East Sussex, Devonshire West is about half of the Devonshire ward. It runs from Beamsley Road to Terminus Road along the seafront, back as far as the railway line and under the curve of Whitley Road.
What is Big Local?
Big Local, run by Local Trust, is working with the Big Lottery Fund to help people to make massive, lasting and positive differences in their own communities. Devonshire West is one of 150 areas around England that have been allocated £1m over a ten year period to make their area an even better place to live.
Big Local has four key aims:
Devonshire West, like all the other areas, will progress through a seven stage Big Local Pathway over the duration of the project.
Residents are at the heart of the process: through a series of consultation events, all the suggestions have been collected from local people.
Originally, the project was managed by an Interim Planning Group made up of community volunteers and representatives from a few key organisations. It is now managed by an elected Board, with significant support from a wide range of local people.
There is a requirement that residents are in the majority on the Devonshire West Big Local Board, and this is the body that is responsible for implementing how the £1m will be spent.
The group has always adopted an open approach to their work and welcome more volunteers. If you are interested in getting involved, please get in touch.
What it is NOT…
It’s NOT short-term – 10 years or more to plan and deliver the best options for the area.
Who is Involved?
Currently, the Board comprises of the following members:
- Brian Lawrence – Local business owner
- Miriam Wilkinson – 3VA, representing our Locally Trusted Organisation
- Jon Chapman – Involved with number of local initiatives and until recently Board Member of Leaf Hall.
- Sue Morris – Resident and Co-founder of Community Stuff
- Adrian Ley – Treasurer, resident and member of Devonshire Collective and Eastbourne Blind Society
- Jim Boot – Local Trust Rep
- Graham Button – Resident and member of Friends of Seaside Rec
- Janette Calverley – Acting Chair and resident
- Marie Wheeler – Resident and founder of I Am Who I Am
- Amy Hope – Experienced fundraiser and community worker
- Stephen Holt – Local Councillor and member of the chamber of commerce
The Board has to be between 8 and 20 members; it is a Local Trust requirement that the Board has a resident majority. All Board members have signed up to a set of policies and procedures in accordance with Local Trust guidance and good practice.
The DWBL Plan
After 18 months of consultation exercises, more than 800 post-it notes with residents’ ideas and dreams, and painstaking scrutiny of documents, statistics and other projects in the area, the Devonshire West Big Local team put together the Plan for the first three years of Lottery funding.
The Plan was presented to the community on 7th August 2014 at a drop-in meeting and received overwhelmingly positive feedback. It was submitted to Local Trust on 22nd September, and they visited for an interview on 16th October. Final approval was deferred until there was a newly elected Board with a full term of office ahead; after the AGM in November, the last few bits of paperwork were signed and sealed and the first installment of the 2015 phase of funding was on its way in January 2015.
Every three years Devonshire West Big Local must create a new 3-year plan which is designed with input from board members, residents and local stakeholders and then submitted to Big Local for review and approval.
A summary of the Devonshire West Big Local 3-year plan for 2017-2019 can be found below. Our 2017-2019 plan targets four themes that we wish to concentrate on over the next three years, these themes are;
Theme 1. Consolidating our Devonshire West Big Local Presence
Theme 2. Operating a grants programme
Theme 3. Supporting local enterprise and promoting social inclusion
Theme 4. Working in partnership
The Start of DWBL
At the start of 2013, it was the Local Trust rep, Jim Boot, wandering the streets talking to people. A gradually snowballing group formed a “partnership” that began organising the consultation process. By the end of that year, a “Board” was elected, with responsibility for collating all the data and formalising the paperwork. They are continually supported by members of the community, from spreading the word to coming up with ideas and running events.
The DWBL Film
During the first period of the project, the Devonshire West Big Local team commissioned a film to give a flavour of the area and the ideas that people had. Community Stuff produced this beautiful 10 minute film – this was included in the submission to the Local Trust.
Here at Devonshire West Big Local we have a number of documents which support and influence our work.
Some of these key documents are;
Our Area Profile, which contains information on the many demographics living and working within Devonshire West and can be found here. The Area Profile is an older document and we now use the more current Local Insight Report provided to us by Big Local, which can be found here. The Local Insight Report is a key document which we recommend potential grant applicants view as it contains detailed information about local demographics and issues.
Information gathered from resident consultations are also regularly used by Devonshire West Big Local, we strive to make sure that the work we do always reflects the wishes of our residents and so we undertake regular consultation activities, from large scale meetings to smaller, more informal, conversations. In 2012 Devonshire West Big Local asked residents to take part in a huge consultation effort which provided us with data to start our work, the results of that First Resident Consultation can be found here. We have also undertaken more recent consultations including a number of small Focus Groups, the data from those meetings can be found here.
Devonshire West Big Local also have a number of policies and procedure that we ensure we always adhere to, these include a Code of Conduct and policies regarding Conflict of Interest, Data Protection and Confidential Information, Health & Safety, Safeguarding, Equal Opportunities, Diversity and Incision, Anti-Bullying and Complaints. Should you wish to see a copy of any of these polocies you can request them by emailing Samantha.Wickens@3VA.org.uk.
Local Trust Guidance
The Local Trust website contains a number of documents and a great deal of information about the Big Local program. To find out more about Big Local and the Local Trust you can visit the Local Trust website here.