TWO projects that aim to bring the Armed Forces and their local community together in Odiham have been awarded £70,000 from the Government.

In 2011, the Ministry of Defence set aside up to £30million over four years to help communities develop projects that promote greater understanding of closer ties between the military and residents.

Hampshire County Council has been working closely with the Army, Royal Navy and the Royal Air Force to support applications for Armed Forces Community Covenant grants.

Over the last two years, 38 projects across Hampshire have been awarded £1.6m worth of funding.

As part of the grant scheme, Odiham and Greywell Cricket Club has been awarded £32,000 to help fund a new pavilion at the ground, and RAF Odiham has been given £39,866 for a new first responder vehicle that is equipped with a defibrillator. It is based at RAF Odiham and can be deployed in the local community.

Applications are now open for the next round of applications before the deadline on August 19.

The scheme is open to all volunteer groups, schools and charities in Hampshire and bids from £100 to £250,000 can be made. However, to be eligible, the project needs to have a clear benefit to both the Armed Forces and their local community.

They will then be considered by the Community Covenant Partnership Panel, which is made up of representatives from the Armed Forces and the county council. Successful applications will then be submitted to the regional Ministry of Defence panel.

Councillor Keith Mans, Hampshire County Council’s armed forces champion, said: “Hampshire is proud to have been the second authority in the country to have signed up to the Community Covenant, showing our commitment to supporting and working with the Armed Forces community.”