Headlines: July 27th, 2005

People and projects that are making a positive difference to places in which
they live and work are being invited to enter the Deputy Prime Minister’s
Awards for Sustainable Communities. The call for entries follows the success
of last year’s competition, which was won by the Grange Park Community
Project in Blackpool.

The awards have been established to recognise those individuals and
organisations that contribute to making towns, cities and communities,
including those in rural areas, better places. The ODPM says the awards pay
tribute to those whose commitment and enthusiasm is making a significant
contribution towards the building of thriving and successful communities.

The competition is open to initiatives of all types and sizes and anyone,
even those directly involved with a project, can submit an entry. All the
entries received by the closing date – September 5th – will be considered by
a panel of independent judges with wide experience in regeneration. The
award process is being administered on behalf of the ODPM by The British
Urban Regeneration Association whose own objective is the identification and
promotion of best practice in urban renewal.

Eligible entries have to demonstrate that they meet a number of criteria
including showing the active involvement of their local community of either
residents or businesses and they must be environmentally sensitive.

The Deputy Prime Minister, John Prescott, said sustainable communities would
not be possible without the people and projects making invaluable
contributions to their local communities. The awards, he said, underlines
his department’s commitment to delivering sustainable communities.

Last year the Grange Park project took the award ahead of three other
finalists, Joining Up Northumberland Park from Tottenham in north London,
Chatham Maritime and the Historic Dockyard, from Chatham, Kent and the Urban
and Rural Renaissance Initiative from County Durham.

This year’s winners will receive their awards at a ceremony early in the New
Year.