CLG funding is going to 57 local authorities around the country. See http://www.communities.gov.uk/news/corporate/1311364. I'd love to see them all join the Meanwhile Ning. I know that council officers sometimes have difficulty accessing network sites which is ridiculous when everyone accepts we live in a knowledge economy.
We've been asked for an average cost of a meanwhile project... (piece of string anyone?!)
You can do a meanwhile project for anything from zero pounds to £35k or above. There's a huge range which we're helping to test out.
Whatever councils choose to do with this funding we know we have to find ways of doing meanwhile that become part of the 'new normal'. One way to spread the benefits through the town centre is to link a 'meanwhile centre' to other aspirations in a larger project. At the moment we're about to open the first Meanwhile Centre in Hastings. As well as having loads of things going on, it will also be a drop-in space where local people (both owners and occupiers) can find out about the town centre and the meanwhile opportunities.
If you know anyone in the councils that will be receiving the funding, talk to them about meanwhile and suggest they join the ning. CLG are pondering whether to give us the rest of the meanwhile project grant which was agreed back in April by the previous Secretary of State. The new one, John Denham, may need convincing not to spend it all on areas at risk of high BNP vote (no doubt important but, I believe, a fundamentally flawed way of dealing with nationwide recession). If you care about meanwhile and want us to keep supporting it, please write to John Denham and, even more effectively get your MP to write to him. Send us a copy via firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jess Steele, Meanwhile Project, Development Trusts Association