Grants available for community groups around East Midlands Airport


Community groups in the areas surrounding East Midlands Airport (EMA) are encouraged to apply for a range of grants that are available from the Airport Community Fund.


The fund forms part of EMA’s Community Engagement Programme, committed to maximising the positive benefits of having an airport nearby and minimising the negative impacts that airport operations have on surrounding communities.

The Community Fund was established in April 2002 and has since helped over 1,700 initiatives benefit from over £2.2m in funding. Money from the fund has gone to a diverse range of projects from equipment for village halls to the development of wildlife areas.

Organisations within the  Area of Benefit – which stretches to the outer edges of Derby, Nottingham and Leicester to the north, east and south and includes Burton on Trent to the west - can apply for any of the four different funds currently offered by EMA. Information about these funds and links to apply can be found here.

The EMA Community Fund (up to £2,000)

This fund is dedicated to bringing lasting benefit to those areas most affected by the airport’s operations. The airport contributes £50,000 each year to the EMA Community Fund, and this is topped up with noisy aircraft fines.

Eligible charities, community groups and not-for-profit community organisations can apply for grants up to £2,000 for tangible items of lasting benefit, such as equipment and furniture. This fund cannot pay for running costs, consumables, salaries, rent or maintenance. You can find details about this fund including eligibility criteria in the EMA Community Fund Guidance Brochure, which you are advised to read before making an application.

The EMA Low Carbon Energy Fund (up to £10,000)

The EMA Community Fund has ring-fenced a pot of funding to provide a ‘Low Carbon Energy Fund’ for solar panels, LED installations, electric charging points, air and ground source heating and similar proven low carbon technologies.  The fund will be closed once the pot of funding is fully spent.

Eligible local charities, not-for-profit community groups, parish councils, schools, sporting facilities and other statutory bodies can bid for up to £10,000 to improve local community and public facilities such as schools, village halls, sports facilities and community buildings with these listed low carbon technologies.

EMA Eco Garden Fund (up to £10,000)

Following on from the success of the EMA School Eco-Garden Competition, the airport’s Community Fund has ring-fenced a pot of funding to provide an ‘Eco-Garden Fund’.  The fund will be closed once the pot of funding is fully spent.

Eligible schools,  not-for-profit community organisations and charities can bid for up to £10,000 to turn their Eco-Garden dream into a reality.

The EMA Community Sponsorship Fund (up to £200)

The EMA Community Sponsorship Fund provides small grants of up to £200 to support eligible local charities and community groups with projects and events that provide a benefit to the local community and, without support, might otherwise not be able to take place.

The maximum award is £200. However, exceptions will be considered for events and projects within the nearest villages at the discretion of the airport.

EMA’s Community Engagement Manager Colleen Hempson said: “At East Midlands Airport, we are committed to making a positive difference to the quality of life in our local communities.

“As well as being a good neighbour, we believe that supporting local groups and charities is important to our long-term success. We’re very pleased to support a wide range of community groups and projects through our funding schemes.”