Once again, a pot of £25,000 is available and organisers will welcome applications for any amount between £300 and £3,000.
Last Thursday the chest was officially opened for 2019 at a special event at the Hornbrook pub in Horsham, which was attended by dignitaries from across the county,
The application period will be open until May 31, after which time the entries will scrutinised by a panel of judges, including Mark Woodhouse, who is chairman of the family brewer; John Scudder, the landlord of the Plough Inn at Ifield, Crawley; Gary Shipton, editor in chief of this newspaper and its sister titles; Blaise Tapp, community editor of this newspaper and Adrian Barrott, from the Sussex Community Foundation.
Winners of grants will be handed their cheques at a special presentation, held at a Hall and Woodhouse pub later in the year.
This is the 17th year of the community chest, which now runs in Hall and Woodhouse’s key trading areas of Dorset and Sussex and parts of Surrey.
During that time, the family brewer has given away a staggering £568,000 to hundreds of deserving recipients.
One of those is St Joseph’s Specialist School and College in Cranleigh and Alan Day, from the school, attended last Thursday’s launch event to tell the audience how much of a difference the grants it had received over the years had made.
He said: “Hall and Woodhouse funded a ceiling hoist for one young man and he was able to access parts of his classroom that he was not able to before. The difference the grants have made to our young people is immeasurable. If that is what barley and hops does for you then it is wonderful!”
Caroline Nicholls, the High Sheriff of West Sussex, spoke of her admiration for the community chest.
She said: “Every single grant has made such a huge difference to so many people and I would really encourage other companies to follow the lead of Hall and Woodhouse.”
Mark Woodhouse said: “We do not think being a big company is good enough but we think being valued by our communities is. We never cease to be amazed by what the successful applicants manage to achieve with the money they receive.”