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East Midlands Airport Community Fund available to groups and organisations in Rushcliffe

Last updated: 7/2/2024

Rushcliffe Borough Council (RBC) is encouraging residents and organisations in the vicinity of East Midlands Airport (EMA) to apply for grants to help bring lasting benefit to those most affected by the airport’s operations. 

EMA’s Airport Community Fund offer a number of different grants to community groups and organisations within their eligible area to support those communities affected by the airport.

It forms part of their Community Engagement Programme, committed to maximising the positive benefits of having an airport nearby and minimising the negative impacts that airport operations have on surrounding communities and was discussed at RBC’s Community Scrutiny Group on January 18.

The Community Fund was established in April 2002 and has since helped over 1,700 initiatives benefit from over £2.2m in funding.

Money from the fund has gone to a diverse range of projects from equipment for village halls to the development of wildlife areas.

Organisations within their Area of Benefit can apply for any of the four different funds currently offered by EMA and information about these funds and links to apply can be found on their website.

The EMA Community Fund (up to £2,000)

This fund is dedicated to bringing lasting benefit to those areas most affected by the airport’s operations. The airport contributes £50,000 each year to the EMA Community Fund, and this is topped up with noisy aircraft fines.

Charities, community groups and not-for-profit community organisations within the EMA Area of Benefit can apply for grants up to £2,000 for tangible items of lasting benefit, such as equipment and furniture. This fund cannot pay for running costs, consumables, salaries, rent, maintenance.

You can find details about this fund including eligibility criteria in the EMA Community Fund Guidance Brochure, which you are advised to read before making an application.

The EMA Low Carbon Energy Fund (up to £10,000)

The EMA Community Fund has ring-fenced a pot of funding to provide a ‘Low Carbon Energy Fund’ for solar panels, LED installations, electric charging points, air and ground source heating and similar proven low carbon technologies.

Local charities, not-for-profit community groups, parish councils, schools, sporting facilities and other statutory bodies within the EMA Area of Benefit can bid for up to £10,000 to improve local community and public facilities such as schools, village halls, sports facilities and community buildings with these listed low carbon technologies.

EMA Eco Garden Fund (up to £10,000)

Following on from the success of the EMA School Eco-Garden Competition, the airport’s Community Fund has ring-fenced a pot of funding to provide an ‘Eco-Garden Fund’.

Schools and other not-for-profit community organisations and charities within the EMA Area of Benefit can bid for up to £10,000 to turn their Eco-Garden dream into a reality.

The EMA Community Sponsorship Fund (up to £200)

The EMA Community Sponsorship Fund provides small grants of up to £200 to support local charities and community groups with projects and events that provide a benefit to the local community and, without support, might otherwise not be able to take place.

The maximum award is £200. However, exceptions will be considered for events and projects within the nearest villages at the discretion of the airport.

EMA recognises that aircraft noise can be a cause of disturbance for some local residents and whilst they do everything possible to minimise their impacts, anyone affected can contact the airport to raise concerns or seek further advice.

Their online tracking tool WebTrak enables anyone to see air traffic in the vicinity of the airport and can be used to submit a noise complaint directly. 

Alternatively aircraft disturbances can be reported by filling out an EMA Noise Complaints Form by emailing or by using their automated complaint voicemail box on 0845 108 8540.

RBC’s Cabinet Portfolio Holder for Environment and Safety Cllr Rob Inglis said: “We know aircraft noise is a concern for some communities who live close to the airport who play an active role in trying to minimise disruption for residents.

“EMA have four funding pots available for eligible residents and communities in Rushcliffe who are impacted and that can help really worthwhile local projects.

“From carbon clever initiatives that improve public facilities to support creating eco-gardens and more, I would encourage everyone in the eligible area to see where their funding could help to make a positive difference to their local community.

“If you know anyone that could benefit from this funding, we encourage you to apply through the EMA website.”

EMA’s Community Engagement Manager Colleen Hempson said: “At East Midlands Airport, we are committed to making a positive difference to the quality of life in our local communities. As well as being a good neighbour, we believe that supporting local groups and charities is important to our long-term success.

“We’re very pleased to support a wide range of community groups and projects through our funding schemes and to do all that we can do to minimise noise and respond to issues when they are raised by local residents.”