Councillors are set to agree a revitalised package of measures to support residents this winter, which will see a return of warm hubs across Lancashire.
At its next meeting, Lancashire County Council’s cabinet will consider proposals to relaunch the £72,000 Lancashire Warm Spaces grant scheme, as well as £25,000 to deliver warm spaces in libraries across the county.
Residents will be able to pop into their local library to enjoy a cuppa, a space to sit, free computers and Wi-Fi, charging points for digital equipment, events and activities and help from staff to find further information about what support is available.
The measures are part of a wider package of winter wellbeing support, which include affordable warmth support, continuation of the Lancashire Community Food Grant Scheme and the ongoing delivery of the Pensioner Benefits Uptake Campaign.
Cllr Michael Green, cabinet member for Health and Wellbeing, said: “Last winter we took robust action to protect our most vulnerable residents.
“I am pleased that we are once again proposing to take strong action this year, making our libraries available as warm spaces across Lancashire and relaunching our grant scheme to help community organisations to run their own warm spaces.
“We will also build on our strong links with partners to maximise the uptake of all national initiatives to support residents with the cost of living.
“We are keen to support households across Lancashire and that is why I will be asking cabinet to approve these measures.”
First launched in 2022, the Lancashire Warm Spaces grant scheme is aimed at helping community organisations run their own warm spaces. Under the proposals, local organisations will be able to apply for up to £500 through a simple application process to pay for a range of associated costs.
The county council will also support organisations in the Voluntary, Community, Faith and Social Enterprise (VCFSE) sector with various resources designed to help registered organisations to set up/improve a warm space.
The grant scheme will open for applications on Wednesday, 8 November and will remain open until 23:59 on Sunday, 3 December. There may be future application rounds depending on how many applications are approved in the first round.
Successful applicants will be asked to sign up to the Lancashire Warm Spaces Charter – a set of seven core principles intended to help local people know what to expect when they enter a Lancashire Warm Space and what those providing spaces expect in return.
Residents will be able to search for their nearest warm space by searching our online directory.
Residents can also visit our updated Cost of Living Hub, which will detail all the support available to residents and businesses across Lancashire, including information on how to access benefits and financial support, help with energy, support with food and help getting into work.
To find out more visit: lancashire.gov.uk/costofliving