Torridge District Council votes to hand out £10,000 to each of its 23 wards in the next financial year for community projects.

Torridge District Council will be dishing out £10,000 to each of its wards in the next financial year thanks to the latest New Homes Bonus (NHB).

The council received £1.588million in NHB last year (2015/16) and in the next financial year is set to receive another £2.028million.

It will distribute £10,000 to the 23 wards for community projects, and also make a pot of £200,000 available for bids from town and parish councils and community groups.

But at its community and resources committee meeting yesterday (Monday), some councillors felt the equal distribution of funds for both urban and rural wards was not fair.

Bideford South Councillor David Brenton said: “Most new homes are being built in urban areas and Bideford is particularly where the problems are.

“People who have financial problems move to the urban areas.

“I think the money should be skewed more towards urban areas than rural ones.”

But Cllr Rose Lock, who represents the rural Three Moors ward, said: “I think this is a wonderful opportunity for us to give back when everyone else is taking.”

Bideford South Cllr Tony Inch added: “If you ask somewhere like Milton Damerel what the council does for them, I don’t think it would be a lot.

“We’ve spent a lot of money on Bideford and Holsworthy and all they see is us picking up their recycling and waste once a week.

“This money would mean they see us actually doing something.”

As well as the 25 per cent allocated towards this funding, a further 25 per cent of the NHB will go towards the cost pressures of delivering services.

The remaining 50 per cent of the NHB – approximately £1.014million – will be used by the council to fund future capital investment.

Councillors voted 10 for and two against imposing the new NHB protocol.