SNP MSP Ruth Maguire has encouraged projects in North Ayrshire to apply for a new £1 million fund, which has been launched by the SNP government to help promote town centres and online businesses and encourage people to spend locally.

Grants of between £500 and £5000 will be given out as part of the Scotland Loves Local scheme, which aims to enable visitors and residents to safely shop, eat and relax within communities.

The funding aims to support small scale improvements that will help motivate people to shop, eat and relax within their community whilst ensuring public health safety, and can be used for measures such as protective screens, physical distancing markers, hand sanitising equipment and PPE.

The MSP for Cunninghame South said: “We all have a role to play in Scotland’s economic recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic, and it’s now more important than ever to consider shopping locally and supporting the brilliant local businesses in North Ayrshire.

“The Scotland Loves Local campaign – which will provide grants of between £500 and £5,000 – encourages people to think how they can safely support people to shop, eat and relax within their community whilst ensuring public health safety.

“This £1 million fund, delivered by the Scottish Government, is an exciting opportunity for local projects and locally-based online businesses to support town centres and promote their local community.

“This new fund will be a real boost for communities across North Ayrshire.”

The funding is being provided by the Scottish Government and administered by Scotland’s Towns Partnership.

Applications to the fund open are open from Sunday October 18th and close on Friday November 25th.

It is anticipated that grants will be allocated to successful applicants within a month of the fund launching.

An application form and guidance can be found on the Scotland’s Towns Partnership website.