Scottish Lothian List Conservative MSP Jeremy Balfour urges local community groups to submit bids to the UK government’s Community Ownership Fund

Mr Balfour’s call comes after the UK government opened the second round of the fund, worth £150m. The fund can enable community groups to take control of pubs, music venues, sports facilities, historic buildings and other facilities for the benefit of the public, which might otherwise be lost forever.

The Scottish Conservatives’ MSP said: ‘The first round of funding provided significant funds to help save much-loved assets across Scotland and I would encourage community groups in Lothians to apply for this fund. If there is a risky local asset in Lothians that you don’t want to lose from your community, the UK Government’s Community Ownership Fund can help you protect it.

Eligibility criteria for the fund have also been extended, meaning more groups in Lothians can apply.

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Stock photo of Scottish Conservative Lothian List MSP Jeremy Balfour, by Ian Georgeson.

Mr Balfour added: “Successful deals can enable community assets to thrive again and help accelerate economic recovery in Lothians.

“The Community Ownership Fund is just one example of how the UK government is directly investing in and supporting communities in Lothians.”