The third round of funding for rural businesses and communities is now open for applications.

The Malvern Hills Rural Fund, offering grants of between £2,500 and £25,000, aims to bolster new small or micro businesses and farming diversification ventures, with a focus on growing tourism.

The grants are restricted to physical projects such as new constructions and renovations, excluding staff or operational costs.



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The scope for the funded projects spans across the second half of this year, from July to December.

Some of the approved projects from previous rounds include a holiday let extension for a community vineyard, a business offer expansion for a motor vehicle company aimed to reduce its carbon footprint, and a wheelchair-friendly log cabin for tourist accommodation.

Although individual grants are available, the expectations are such that businesses will have to match 50 per cent of the total project cost.

Preliminary interest must be indicated through an online form on the Malvern Hills District Council website by Friday, February 23.

Post shortlisting, due on Monday, February 26, the selected candidates will be invited to prepare a full application by Friday, March 15.

The provision of this funding is thanks to the Government's Rural England Prosperity Fund and the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Cllr Beverley Nielsen, portfolio holder for tourism and economic development at the council, said: "The third round of funding is now available for rural businesses and communities.

"We are pleased at the variety of projects that have applied over the past two rounds and it would be great to keep that variety and success going.

"The Malvern Hills Rural Fund is a brilliant opportunity to support some wonderful rural projects across the district".

Applicants interested in the eligibility criteria and the application process can visit