Nottingham City Council has secured grants to provide holiday activities and food to pupils who are eligible for Free School Meals (FSM) over the Summer and Christmas holidays of 2021.

The council has secured a £1.8m grant from the Government’s Holiday Activity Fund (HAF). A portion of this funding will be allocated, through a bidding process, to community groups, charities and schools with the ability to deliver Holiday Clubs in communities across the city.

The HAF funding has been allocated from the Department for Education with certain criteria attached. The criteria specify that the support for tackling holiday hunger should be through FSM pupils attending Holiday Clubs. At the Holiday Clubs, FSM pupils will receive a free lunch, alongside a programme of activities focused on healthy eating, fitness and mental health.

The bidding process for the Holiday Club grant allocations is now available for community groups, charities and schools to apply.

Who is eligible to apply?

Applications are invited from schools, community and voluntary organisations/groups and social/not-for-profit enterprises working to develop activities and services within the city boundary, all of these providers are eligible to apply for funding.

What is the funding for?

The grant funding will be used to meet the aims of the DfE’s Holiday Activity Fund programme. These are:

  • To provide school holiday activities during the summer and Christmas holidays 2021
  • These activities should include physical activity or enriching activities
  • Children attending sessions need to be fed whilst they are there and you will be asked to specify whether this is something you can arrange or whether you would like this to be arranged for you.

The funding is for children who are eligible for Free School Meals which means they are from families in receipt of income support, jobseekers allowance, employment and support allowance or universal credit.

How is an application made?

Our guidance document below should provide you with all the information you need, but if you have any questions you can also contact the team by emailing

When is the deadline for applications?

As explained in the documents above, the deadline for grant applications to be received is 5pm on Tuesday 18th May 2021.

For more information, please email

Publicity and promotion

Groups and organisations who are awarded funding will need to follow the steps in the Guidance Document to promote their ‘Free Fun and Food’ sessions. These steps include registering with Ask Lion to enable activity sessions to be listed online at AskLiON and also following the branding requirements outlined here.

Opportunity for collaboration

Nottingham City Council have engaged Nottingham Forest Community Trust (NFCT) to deliver Holiday Clubs across the City with some of the HAF funding. NFCT are looking for local providers to deliver a range of activities and services during the summer and Christmas holidays. By working together there is an opportunity to help streamline and support the governance, compliance and safeguarding processes as well as delivery co-ordination and any necessary provider delivery training. If you are interested in delivering programmes or services as part of this city-wide collaborative approach please contact Nottingham Forest Community Trust directly by emailing Graham Moran, CEO, Nottingham Forest Community Trust to register your interest.