14th April - Steamship Freshspring Trust Update 4

As mentioned last week, the Lottery suspended all new grant applications and is making a £50m fund available to help existing grantees – of which Freshspring is one – to ensure survival over the next four months. We are evaluating the criteria and will apply if we can.

Our bank – CAFBank – has also made a fund available to help Charity’s for which, unsurprisingly, there have applications eight times greater than the fund, so we await to see how much we will receive of the small application we submitted.

We have a number of ongoing grants and, in the light of the current situation, we are talking to the donors to assess flexibility in the way that the funds are used. A positive response so far.

Easter Sunday should have been the first day that we opened the ship to the public this year, but of course that was not to be. Such a shame when the weather was so glorious. Hopefully we WILL be able to open at some point and greet visitors to our much enhanced ship when we should also be able to show off our new awning.

Despite the shutdown we are not idle. We are finalising reports for the Our Heritage grant - the work started two years ago and is now all but complete – and preparing for the day when normality returns so that we can ‘steam ahead’ again.

As I said last week, optimism rules! We hope everyone stays well and safe!