Sustainable Development Grant

The Sustainable Development Fund

The Sustainable Development Grant (SDG) was set up by Welsh Government in 2001 as part of its ongoing support for protected landscapes (National Parks and Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty) and sustainable development. The Fund’s main aim is to support and promote a more sustainable way of life in these special areas.


The Sustainable Development Fund provides grant aid for innovative environmental, economic and community projects that develop and test new ways of achieving a more sustainable way of life within the AONB.

Sustainable development has four themes:

  • Environmental
  • Economic
  • Cultural
  • Social

“Sustainability” is about balancing current environmental, social and economic requirements with the need to protect the environment and the interests of future generations.

Melin Daron

Llithfaen Playground

Bardsey Storehouse

Ffynnon fadog

Grants and Grant Rates

SDF will provide project grants, management grants to support staff costs and development grants to provide a catalyst for new action or partnerships. Funding will normally be set at between 50% and 75% of the total project cost but possibly more in some exceptional circumstances.

Applicants will be expected to provide at least 25% of the total project costs, either from their own money or those of other grant funds. Officers from the AONB Unit can provide details of possible match funding sources.

Which types of projects will be supported?
The Fund is available to support projects that benefit the AONB while working to meet the aims of the Sustainable Development Fund. Priority will be given to projects that:

Inspire and involve the local community
Your project should have the genuine support or involvement of communities within the AONB. SDF funded projects should aim to contribute something to the local community, either a social, environmental, cultural and/or economic benefit.

Enhance knowledge and understanding of the AONB and Sustainability
The local culture, natural environment and history all play an important role in Llŷn’s special identity. The SDF aims to promote the wider knowledge and understanding of these special characteristics and raise awareness of sustainability among all those who live in the area and visit it.

Who can apply for funding?

All of the following may apply:

  • Community, Voluntary and Partnership Groups
  • Community Councils
  • Local Authorities
  • The Private Sector (for projects that are in the wider public interest).
  • Individuals (for projects that are in the wider public interest).

How are decisions made?

Applicants are always advised to discuss their project ideas with the officers before submitting an application.

Once completed, application forms are handed in to the staff of the AONB Unit either on paper or electronically, where they will be registered and checked – in some instances further information may be needed.

Officers will then assess applications in relation to the Fund’s criteria (these criteria have been developed and agreed nationally). Applications are then either dealt with by officers through delegated rights or presented before a meeting of the Grant Panel. The Grant Panel meet 3 or 4 times a year as needed and is a sub-committee of the main AONB Joint Advisory Committee.

Application may be fully supported, offered a reduced amount of grant or refused. A set of conditions will be attached to any grant offer made.

We raise awareness of recent successful projects on our Instagram page (@ahnellynaonb) and in our annual newsletter.

Here is a taste of some supported projects

  • Bardsey Storehouse
  • Chough habitat restoration
  • Aberdaron sailing club
  • Plas Carmel Project
  • RS Thomas Festival
  • Improving Llithfaen’s playground
  • Survey of goats at Nant Gwrtheyrn
  • Hafod Ceiri
  • The Llŷn Maritime Museum, Nefyn
  • Antur Aelhaearn
  • Abersoch Solar Benches
  • Melin Daron
  • Dinas Dinlle dig - Gwynedd Archaeological Trust

2024 Llŷn AONB
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