6th April - Steamship Freshspring Trust Update 3

As of late last week, the Lottery suspended all new grant applications so our intended next submission is on hold. Instead the Lottery is drafting guidance for a £50m fund aimed at helping existing grantees to weather the effects of the Covid virus so, in effect, protecting their investments made to date. The grant criteria is expected this week – who knows whether we will be eligible to apply or not!

Very limited work on the ship continues as outlined in the last bulletin. The tree we received for conversion into a mast is being treated with preservative to stop it cracking. The photovoltaic system is fully functional and is producing 3kw of mains power – not that this is likely to be required for a time. The awning fabric has been ordered and received by Exe Sails but, as they have stopped work, nothing is happening until they re-start – but we have been assured that our job is first on their list!

We are using the shutdown to check and update our Policy’s, look at the way certain parts of Freshspring operate, review the website to see what needs updating and populating the areas that are missing data. We are looking at membership to see if we can enhance the offering, monitoring our finances and ensuring that our volunteers are helped in any way we can. At the end of the shutdown we want to emerge a stronger organisation with a clear view of what we can achieve over the remainder of the year and beyond.

Optimism rules! We hope everyone stays well and safe!