SOURCES OF FUNDING
St Andrews Common Good Fund
The Common Good Act (1491) stated that revenue from burgh properties and income from various levies were to be used for the common good of the town. Over the following centuries fixed or moveable assets were donated ‘on behoof of the community’ – most commonly to what were formerly known as burgh councils. The common good funds today comprise rents from land and buildings as well as moveable items such as paintings, books and artefacts. Local authorities – successors to the town councils that were abolished in 1975 – are responsible for administering common good assets, but do not own the funds.
Common Good Fund: Frequently Asked Questions
Did all the land held by Town Councils pass into Common Good Funds?
In 1975, some Town Councils took the opportunity to pass the town’s common property into new Trusts to avoid having them taken over by the new authorities. St Andrews, for example, arranged for all the golf links in St Andrews that were part of their common lands to be transferred by Act of Parliament into the St Andrews Links Trust.
How many Common Good sites are there in St Andrews?
We have four Common Good sites in St Andrews that pay rent into the Common Good Fund:
• Town Hall
• Victory Memorial Hall
• Bruce Embankment (including car park)
• the Fishermens’ stores at the harbour
Are there only fixed assets in the Common Good Fund?
No, there is also Moveable Common Good Property. These consist of such things as the Provost Chain and badge which was presented to St Andrews Town Council by the Marquess of Bute and is now used by the Provost of Fife. There are also lots of robes, hats and other official garments from the old Town Council. Finally, there are various sets of official weights and measures. Most of these are stored by Fife Council in Cupar.
How much money does the Common Good Fund get each year?
Approximately £95,000 per annum.
Who can apply for funds?
Any organisation or individual can apply for funds to support projects that will benefit the people of St Andrews. Recently, funds have been given to the St Andrews Harbour Trust (Pontoon project), St Andrews in Bloom, St Andrews Community Council Senior Citizens’ Treat, Happy Days Children Charity and the restoration of the Whyte Melville fountain (another Common Good asset) in Market Street.
Who decides what funds are allocated?
A council official under delegated powers can award funds up to £2,000. Fife Councillors award funds above £2,000.
What role does the Community Council have in the decision-making process?
The Community Council is a consultee. After they have assessed an application, they pass their opinion to the Fife Council official overseeing the application. As with planning applications, Fife Councillors can ignore the Community Council’s comments.
St Andrews Community Trust
The St Andrews Community Trust was established through an agreement between the Royal Burgh of St Andrews Community Council and St Andrews Links Trust. The purpose of the Community Trust is to distribute funds generated through the protection and trademark of the Town Crest of the Royal Burgh of St Andrews.
Funds are allocated to clubs, charitable organisations and good causes in and around the town. The board of Trustees comprises two members from the Royal Burgh of St Andrews Community Council, one member of Fife Council and a representative from St Andrews Links Trust. Three local resident trustee positions complete the board. The current trustees can be found here.
The Trust considers donations to projects in the ‘Operating Area’ – that is, the area covered by the Royal Burgh of St Andrews Community Council and the Community Council areas that share a border with St Andrews.
200 Club - now closed
The 200 Club raised funds through membership fees to support local groups, organisations and individuals. The Club began raising funds in 1988, under the rules of the Lotteries and Amusements Act 1976 and is registered each year with Fife Council. The last members draw was in January 2022, with the 200 Club remaining open for the payment of Grants.
Membership closed on 31st Dec 2021 and all members were informed by email or letter from 3rd January 2022.
Applying for awards
Both groups and individuals in St Andrews can still apply for an award. Annual awards to groups or individuals can be made under 200 Club rules. Applications must be approved by a small committee from the Community Council. You can apply for a grant by asking for a form at firstname.lastname@example.org