SERVICES, infrastructure and community groups in Weymouth and Portland have received funding boosts totalling more than £600,000 in a year.

A review shows the borough council secured £612,889 in 2013/14 – of which £181,386 went to local organisations. The rest was spent on delivering services and infrastructure improvements, including £300,000 for sea wall repairs at Chiswell following the winter storms.

Councillor Colin Huckle, pictured, briefholder for finance and assets, said: “We have been working hard to win grant funding for the good of people in our borough.

“Most of this money is ringfenced, which means the funder requires us to spend it in a certain way.

“These grants are becoming more and more important as with inflation, rising costs and funding reductions we are expected to have around £9million less each year in 2020 than we had a decade ago.

“We have to do all we can in the future to attract more grants and funding to improve life for residents in Weymouth and Portland.”

The issue of securing external funding to improve the quality of life for residents was recently considered by the borough council’s scrutiny and performance committee.

The committee examined a council register of grants received and awarded.

A Homelessness Prevention Grant of £141,158 from the Department of Communities and Local Government was the second highest grant received.

This money has been used to support a range of projects including a ‘Street Homelessness Assertive Outreach Project’ and to provide ‘Crisis Support for Older People’.

The borough council’s Community Planning and Development service helped secure a variety of smaller grants for community groups worth £116,000.

This money has gone towards health, arts and conservation initiatives, whilst a £5,000 community safety grant was received from the Police and Crime Commissioner for graffiti removal and youth outreach services.

Other services winning funding included tourism and events, which received £20,000 from the Ministry of Defence and £5,000 from the Dorset Health and Wellbeing Board.

This money helped finance the Armed Forces day celebration, the Royal Air Force Town Show and Beach Volleyball Classic and the Dorset Festival of Sport.