fbpx Skip to main content

Applying for CIL funds for an infrastructure project

Applying for CIL funds for an infrastructure project

The SDNPA’s annual CIL bidding window  for the 2023-2024 round of CIL funding has now closed. 

Submitted bids will be assessed and a decision on CIL funding will be made in Autumn 2024.

All CIL bids must be submitted via our Projects for the South Downs portal. Please use the information provided below to help you submit your CIL bid. We are prioritising bids that support our corporate plan priorities of ‘Nature Recovery’, ‘Climate Action’ and ‘A National Park for All’.

All previous applicants, and Parish / Town Councils will be sent an email advising of the opening of the Call for Projects. Please email CIL@southdowns.gov.uk to be added to the mailing list for future notification.

Applying for CIL funds takes four stages.

Below is how each stage works:

  • Stage 1: Annual Call for Projects

    Once a year the SDNPA will have a ‘call for projects’, inviting local communities including Parish and Town Councils, County and District Councils, service providers and other stakeholders to put forward projects for CIL funding.

    Bids for infrastructure funding (referred to as an ‘Expression of Interest’ or CIL EOI) should be submitted online at ‘Projects for the South Downs.’

    Project bids which are unsuccessful will be returned to you at the start of the ‘call for projects’ window in order to update any information. The project will once again be reviewed in the next round.

    Bids should include information on:

    • Existing demands on infrastructure.
    • Additional demands likely to arise from proposed development.
    • The extent to which existing infrastructure or services are capable, in terms of location, capacity and suitability, of meeting those additional demands.
    • The estimated costs.
    • The timescales for implementation.

    Please see ‘What does a good CIL fund application look like’ for further guidance on what to include in your bid.

    Bids are unlikely to be successful if there are other funding sources currently available that could help deliver the scheme.

    Strategic or large-scale schemes, for example some transport or education matters, will require the support of the relevant Highway Authority or Local Education Authority

  • Stage 2: Assessment

    Projects put forward for funding will then be assessed in three initial stages:

    If the answer is ‘No’ to any of the above then the project is not eligible for CIL funding. If the answer is ‘Yes’, then the project will move onto Step 2.

    • Step 2 – Category of Project, the SDNPA will prioritise projects (which may involve discussions with County Councils and other strategic infrastructure providers).  Projects will be categorised as Critical, Essential, High Policy Priority or Desirable.
    • Step 3 – Scoring of Projects
      • Projects will be scored using the ‘Scoring Matrix’.
      • Projects are put into 5 year periods based upon when we understand they will be delivered.
      • We will also identify those infrastructure projects where Parish / Town Councils could use their own CIL payments (if they have them)  to deliver the project. If they wish to, a Parish / Town Council can request the SDNPA to retain all or part of their 15% or 25% to ensure maximum funding is available for a project.

    Liaison will also take place with key officers across the National Park, in particular focusing on where proposals can link to objectives within the South Downs Partnership Management Plan.

  • Stage 3: Awarding the Grants

    The Infrastructure Business Plan (IBP) will set out which projects will be allocated funding within that particular year.  

    It is presented for formal approval at Planning Committee.

    Once approved, an ‘in principle’ agreement has been given to allocate funding to those projects and successful applicants will be notified.

    Projects not allocated CIL funding will be carried over and reviewed in the following years Infrastructure Business Plan.  

    These applicants will also be notified and asked to review the information we hold. 

  • Stage 4: Receiving the Funds

    Successful applicants will be invited to submit a more detailed CIL Grants application form. Three quotes for any works to be undertaken will also need to be provided.

    The purpose of this will be to confirm in more detail the use of the funds, the responsible organisation, timescales, claw back arrangements, payment details etc.


"The Downs...too much for one pair of eyes, enough to float a whole population in happiness."