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Six-figure government fund launched to help independent publishers

Matt Abbott newIndependent publishers are set to benefit from a six-figure government fund aimed at helping community news to thrive.

The Welsh Government has announced the launch of the Public Interest Journalism Fund, which will offer up to £8,000 available to existing publishers in Wales.

The grant is being facilitated by Ping! News, a community interest company set up to support sustainability in the independent community news sector which run by the Independent Community News Network and Bristol-based developer Omni Digital.

As part of the fund, four grants of £5,000 will be made available as a seed-funding pot to “stimulate the sector by supporting people with new ideas for sustainable community news sites”.

Applicants to this pot must demonstrate their “commitment to impartial public interest journalism in their communities, showcase their idea and demonstrate how the grant will help them on their journey to becoming sustainable”.

Eight further grants of up to £8,000 are on offer to existing publishers in Wales that meet ICNN’s admissions standards, while third pot will offer small grants to titles experiencing an emergency or technical problems.

ICNN deputy director Matt Abbott, pictured, said: “Independent public interest journalism is more important than ever, especially in Wales where there are huge concentrations of ownership.

“This fund will address this by providing support to organisations committed to delivering locally relevant public interest news and promoting growth in the welsh community news sector.”

Further details about the scheme can be found here.