Leader FAQ's

Who can apply for LEADER funding?

Constituted community groups, small enterprises including social enterprises, public bodies and individuals can all apply for LEADER funding. Community Grants are available for all areas of West Lothian excluding Livingston. Enterprise Grants are restricted to businesses based in rural areas or to businesses that work in a rural industry or support rural areas.


What will LEADER fund?

LEADER will fund innovative projects that are based in West Lothian, or in co-operation with other areas across Scotland and beyond. Your project must contribute to achieving the priorities and objectives of the West Lothian Local Development Strategy. Most community projects will meet a number of our outcomes but Rural Enterprise and Farm Diversification projects need only meet Outcome 5: More sustainable social enterprises and small businesses.


How is the grant paid?

We cannot pay any money up front. To make a claim you must be able to produce invoices and bank statements to demonstrate the money has been spent. If you are concerned about cash flow we are happy to offer advice on how you might manage expenditure.


What level of grant is available?

West Lothian LEADER will usually fund up to 60% of project costs for community projects and up to 40% for businesses. This intervention rate can vary, depending on the project being funded. The remaining amount can be by another grant, with your own funds, or as is most often the case for business projects, by a bank loan.


What support can I expect?

The West Lothian Leader Team will be available to support you at every stage of your application. We also work closely with West Lothian Business Gateway who can offer support to third sector organisations as well as businesses. If we can't help we will endeavour to find someone who can.


When will funding be available?

Funding is awarded 4 times a year with application deadlines being approximately 6 weeks before the award meeting. This is so that we have time to make full technical checks of each project we receive, give our LAG time to read them and also for you to answer any questions they might have so a final decision can be made at the assessment meeting.


What about Brexit?

Brexit has not affected the funding we have to offer. However, our programme will be closing a little earlier than expected with all our funding allocated by the end of March 2019 with projects completed and claims paid by the end of 2020.

How do I apply?

All applications are made via an online system but before you are given access you must complete an expression of interest form on SRN Website

For more information please visit our How To Apply page.