17 May 2016
Transport funding 2016-17

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Àrainn Shuaineirt Management Committee

Governing The Sunart Centre for the communities of Sunart, Ardgour, Morvern, Moidart and Ardnamurchan

Àrainn Shuaineirt Transport Initiative (ASTI) from 1st April 2016

Since 2003 Àrainn Shuaineirt has been in receipt of Community Transport Funding, originally from the Scottish Executive and latterly, since 2012, from The Highland Council.

Administered by the Àrainn Shuaineirt Management Committee (ASMC), the Àrainn Shuaineirt Transport Initiative (ASTI) has brought great benefit to the area. It has ensured that the regular Tuesday and Thursday night Youth Club buses have been able to run, and thereby that the Sunart Centre has been able to fulfil its role at the heart of all our communities, providing a wide range of recreational, sporting and academic opportunities for all children and young people living within the Ardnamurchan High School catchment area irrespective of how far from the centre they live.

Also under this funding ASTI has been able to provide significant support to a wide range of community groups for their transport needs, usually paying half the cost of bus transport to sporting fixtures (shinty & football), shopping trips, school skiing and swimming lessons, lunch clubs, visits to museums, art galleries and other attractions and many more occasional journeys.

However, The Highland Council have ended their current round of funding and put a new scheme with new application criteria in place, under which Àrainn Shuaineirt was not eligible to apply for further funding, and therefore could not continue to operate as previously.

At the meeting of the ASMC on 11th April 2016 it was agreed with regret that funding could no longer be provided to community groups, and the committee wished all previous beneficiaries of the Àrainn Shuaineirt Transport Initiative every success in securing funding from other sources.

However, it was agreed that for the first year, in order to provide some continuity and support to the ASMC partners, some limited funding could be provided in support of activities in the Sunart Centre, High Life Highland partners and local schools, prioritised as below.

  1. Priority One: In support of High Life Highland (Sunart Centre) provision of Tuesday & Thursday Youth Club buses, fully funding any shortfall. Estimated cost to ASMC £17,400 over three years (2016-19) as shown in the attached report.
  2. Priority Two: In support of all other access to the Sunart Centre by children, young people and adults (e.g. Summer Playscheme, Three Lochs Book & Arts Festival and Ardnamurchan Mod). All groups are to be encouraged to source other funding opportunities. The allocation and rates of ASTI funding is to be at the discretion of the ASMC Project Officer, with reference to Committee when required.
  3. Priority Three: In support of the activities of High Life Highland Partners based in the Sunart Centre (Youth Development and Active Schools) in provision of opportunities for children and young people out with the Sunart Centre. Partners are to be encouraged to source other funding opportunities whenever possible. The allocation and rates of ASTI funding is to be at the discretion of the ASMC Project Officer, with reference to Àrainn Shuaineirt Management Committee when required.
  4. Priority Four: It was agreed that ASMC could provide limited financial support to AHS and feeder Primary Schools for transport costs for an initial one year. It was agreed a maximum of £5,000 for school transport in the year 2016/17, and this to be reviewed in April 2017. Schools are to be encouraged to source other funding instead of ASTI funding wherever it may be available. The allocation of ASTI funding and rates to be at the discretion of the ASMC Project Officer, with reference to Committee when required, but agreed guidelines are that it should be standard 50% (or less when possible) and divided pro-rata based on the number of pupils at each school.

It was agreed that the scaled back scheme would continue to operate as before with the application process and administration being carried out through the Sunart Centre Office.

All enquiries should be directed to the Project Officer Eoghan Carmichael on 01397 709228 or by email transport@sunartcentre.org

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