Horsecross Arts is bidding to bag a cash boost from the Tesco Bags of Help initiative.

Tesco teamed up with Groundwork to launch its community funding scheme, which sees grants of £4,000, £2,000 and £1,000 raised from carrier bag sales in Tesco stores awarded to local community projects. greenspace scotland is working with Groundwork to provide support to communities in Scotland.

Three groups in every Tesco region have been shortlisted to receive the cash award and shoppers are being invited to head along to Tesco stores to vote for who they think should take away the top grant.

Horsecross Arts is one of the groups on the shortlist.

The creative organisation and charity behind Perth Concert Hall and Perth Theatre wants to introduce free-to-borrow sensory packs to support children and adults with autism to access and feel comfortable at live performances. Some aspects of shows, like crowds, lights and sounds, haze, and even applause, can be overwhelming. The autism sensory packs will contain items like venue guides, fidget toys and ear defenders to help users to relax and experience the life-enhancing effects of the arts.

“As an organisation, we are committed to identifying ways to remove barriers to attendance and participation and to making sure visiting our venues is an enjoyable and positive experience for everyone. Our autism sensory packs are an important step towards achieving this goal and ensuring equality of cultural opportunity for individuals with autism in our community.” Lauren Oakes, Head of Creative Learning (maternity cover).

Voting is open in Tesco stores in Perth and Scone in January and February 2019. Customers will cast their vote using a token given to them at the check-out in store each time they shop.

Bags of Help project has already delivered over £63 million to more than 20,000 projects across Britain. Tesco customers get the chance to vote for three different groups every time they shop. Every other month, when votes are collected, three groups in each of Tesco’s regions will be awarded funding.

Tony McElroy, Tesco’s Head of Communications in Scotland, said:

“Bags of Help has been a fantastic success and we’ve been overwhelmed by the response from customers. It’s such a special scheme because it’s local people who decide how the money will be spent in their community. There are some fantastic projects on the shortlists and we can’t wait to see these come to life in hundreds of communities.”

Emma Halliday, Community Enabler Coordinator at greenspace scotland, said:

“Bags of Help continues to enable local communities up and down Britain to improve the local spaces and places that matter to them. The diversity of projects that are being funded shows that local communities have a passion to create something great in their area. We are pleased to be able to be a part of the journey and provide support and encouragement to help local communities thrive.”

Funding is available to community groups and charities looking to fund local projects that bring benefits to communities. Anyone can nominate a project and organisations can apply online. To find out more visit

Tuesday 8 January 2019