COMMUNITY and voluntary groups are vying for funding, which will be decided through a public vote taking place this weekend.

The Durham Area Action Partnership (AAP) is hosting its fourth annual vote to allocate funding to groups working in the area.

The It’s Up to You event takes place at Durham Town Hall on Saturday, between 10am and 2pm..

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The total pot is worth £25,000 and 17 groups will be asking for votes from members of the public to see which ones get funding.

Chris Tindale, chair of the Durham AAP said: “It’s an opportunity for the voluntary and community sector to raise awareness of the good work they do and if enough people vote for them then they get their share of the money.

“Plus it’s a chance for local people to tell us what issues are important to them as the county council seeks to have to implement more cuts.”

Among the projects seeking funding is a scheme for stroke victims, one working with vulnerable people who have been drinking in the city centre, a community project in the Sherburn Road area and Durham’s nativity, which takes place each year in the Market Place.

Other groups seeking funding include Durham Fybro Haven, North East Autism Society, the Cheesy Waffles Project, Durham Action on Single Housing, Durham Musical Theatre Company, Durham Community Boxing Club and Pelaw View Community Centre, which wants to put on a junior triathlon.

Belmont Community Association, the Friends of Laurel Avenue Society, Laurel Avenue Community Association, RT Projects, Student Community Action and Castle Community Action are also seeking funding.

Tea, coffee and cakes will also be on sale to raise money for the Great North Air Ambulance Service (GNAAS), the Mayor of Durham’s chosen charity for the year.

Councillor Amanda Hopgood said: “In 2016 we saw over 840 turn out on the day which is great recognition for these groups whose work so often goes on unnoticed.

“This year we would like to see even more turn up either to support local groups or the Air Ambulance.”