Open call to rural community and voluntary sector organisations for the development of a community market pilot programme within a small settlement

– 1. The Opportunity
 2. Background
– 3. Context
– 4. Evaluation process Grant
– 5. Submissions and apply now
 6. What happens next?

1. The Opportunity

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council is seeking Expressions of Interest from community and voluntary sector organisations for the development and delivery of a pilot Community Market Scheme within small settlements.  The Scheme will fund 2 Community Markets as part of the programme and will be funded through the COVID Recovery Small Settlements Regeneration Programme. The fund offers groups situated in Small Settlements* the opportunity to apply for a grant towards set up and delivery costs and applications will be assessed against the criteria outlined within this document.

The Community Markets Pilot has been developed as a pilot scheme to support community groups to deliver ‘Farmer’s style’ markets in small villages within the council area.  Based on the success of the markets in Hillsborough, Moira and Newtownbreda, it is proposed to offer local communities to take on the responsibility of delivering a number of markets within their area.  There is also an opportunity for a number of community groups, from different settlements, to come together to increase the offering across a larger radius.

*Small Settlements are defined as areas with a population of between 1,000 and 4,999. These include; Aghalee, Annahilt, Ballinderry, Dromara, Drumbeg, Glenavy, Hillsborough, Maghaberry, Milltown, Moira and Moneyreagh.

Deadline for Expressions of Interest – Friday 25th November at 12 noon.

2. Background

A Community Market is a temporary outdoor market, which sells food and products made by local businesses, suppliers or producers.  Community Markets are often seen as a meeting place where people have a chance to interact.  They can act as community hubs and add to the identity of a village or town.  They play a key role in tackling isolation issues for older people and rural communities.  A few examples of Community Artisan Markets are Warrenpoint and Newcastle in County Down. 

Financial support for this pilot project has been secured through the Department of Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs (DAERA) under the Small Settlement Programme.  The programme aims to address long standing issues such as rural poverty, isolation and access to services in small settlements with a population of less than 5,000 people.

This pilot scheme aims to support projects that attract investors and visitors, and complement efforts to help rural communities and settlements recover from the impact of the COVID pandemic.

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council is now seeking to support community and voluntary sector organisations with the opportunity to deliver community-led markets in their own communities.

3. Context

Lisburn & Castlereagh City Council is offering financial support of up to a maximum of £5,000 per organisation to develop and deliver a minimum of two community markets until 31st March 2023.  The successful organisations will be responsible for:

  • the development of the community market concept;
  • identifying and sourcing appropriately experienced producers and artisan suppliers;
  • promotion and marketing of events and all associated operational requirements;
  • Ensure any events organised must be open and inclusive of all individuals to attend.

Groups may work in partnership and submit a joint application in conjunction with another local community or voluntary group. 

All successful applicants will be provided with support from Council or its representative through the provision of information workshops and guidance.

The council will be responsible for the procurement, provision and storing of any required infrastructure such as marquees, gazebos, matting, etc. 

4. Evaluation criteria

The overall objective of this call for applications is for the provision of community-led markets within the defined areas.  In order to be considered, organisations are invited to submit a response containing the following information:

Selection criteria Measures Weighting
  1        Formally governed organisation with appropriate documentation Provision of constitution / memorandum of association or equivalent Pass/Fail
  2 Evidence of appropriate insurance   Applicants must have a minimum of £5,000,000 public liability insurance Pass/Fail
  3 Location Applicants must be located and operating in one of the areas mentioned in 2.0.with population under 5,000  Pass/Fail
  4 Financial Governance Applicants must have an appropriate bank account with a minimum of 2 unrelated signatories Pass/Fail
  5 Financial Detailed breakdown of budget for Community Markets project.   Assessed by application process
  6 Concept and Vision

Outline of programme including: 

  • how you will identify local suppliers,
  • ensure local produce is supported,
  • promotion and marketing of event,
management of events including set-up and take-down.
Assessed by application process
  7 Risk Management

Identification of risks

Proposals to include contingencies and mitigations.  This should include comprehensive risk assessments, Health & Safety and Site Management Plans.
Assessed by application process

5. Submissions and apply now

Submissions to be received by 12 noon on Friday 25th November 2022. 

You can complete a submission online by clicking here.

Or you can download a Word application form by clicking here.  Please email the completed form to 

6. What happens next?

Respondents to this open call will submit a formal application form with a specified criteria, for request of funds. Applicants will also be invited to attend an information workshop to raise questions relating to the proposal and application process.