Local Conversations Programme

HealthIntend and People's Health Trust LogoThe Local Conversations Programme is an innovative funding approach developed by People’s Health Trust who work to ensure that where people live does not unfairly reduce the length or quality of their life. The People’s Health Trust funds projects, using money raised by HealthIntend Society Lottery through The Health Lottery to address health inequalities in Suffolk.

The Local Conversations Programme is a country-wide neighbourhood-led initiative which involves empowering local residents to determine how they can make their community an even better place to grow, live, work and age.  The result is opportunities for projects focused on community benefit to be developed and delivered in order to improve the wellbeing of local people and promote the development of a sustainable and supportive community.

Aims of the Local Conversations Projects

  • Provide opportunities for projects to be designed and directed by local people and participants
  • Create stronger connections between people living in Gainsborough, Haverhill South and Kirkley
  • Enable people to make their communities even better places to live, to encourage social connections and activities.
  • Improve the wellbeing of local people
  • Support local solutions to meet local needs
  • Promote community cohesion
  • Develop a sustainable and supportive community

Suffolk has benefitted from £910,150 investment from the People’s Health Trust for this project shared across the following areas over the next three years (from 2016):

  • Gainsborough, Ipswich
  • Haverhill South
  • Kirkley, Lowestoft

Each area has its own People’s Forum, which is made up of local resident volunteers inspired to work together to help create positive local action to make their communities even better places to live.

Delivered in partnership with Community Action Suffolk, the People’s Forums are being supported to develop aspirations, priorities and identify projects for their communities.

If you are interested in getting involved locally, or have a project or idea you would like to develop or discuss please contact:

Mandy Grimwood, Chair:  gainsboroughpeoplesforum@yahoo.com
Facebook: gainsboroughCPF

Haverhill South
Dave Smith, Chair  haverhillsouthpeoplesforum@gmail.com

David Lawrence, Chair: kirkleyforum@aol.com
Facebook: kirkleypeoplesforum

Local Conversations Community Grants

As part of the project, three local Community Grants launched in January 2016. Voluntary organisations, local groups and projects working in Gainsborough, Haverhill and Kirkley were able to apply for funding. Grants of up to £5,000 were available.  The first round of funding closed in February 2016.

14 Organisations in Gainsborough, Ipswich were awarded £32,275, 12 organisations in Haverhill South were awarded £21,977, and 10 organisations in Kirkley, Lowestoft were awarded £29,960. A very broad range of projects were funded, across different sized organisations and some great new partnerships and networking opportunities have developed from this activity.  Forum members in each area will be buddying with organisations awarded grants to build knowledge and relationships.

How do I apply?

Please check back for information on further rounds opening late 2016/early 2017. Please note the guidance, priorities and funding available may be subject to change in each locality for subsequent rounds. Applications must be made in writing, support is available from Community Action Suffolk.

Gainsborough Application pack | Download guidance notes | Download application form
Haverhill South Application pack| Download guidance notes | Download application form
Kirkley, Lowestoft Application pack | Download guidance notes | Download application form


Sarah Mortimer
01473 345318
Community Action Suffolk, Brightspace, 160 Hadleigh Road, Ipswich, IP2 0HH.