RESIDENTS in an area blighted by anti-social behaviour are being asked for their ideas on how to tackle the problem.

Groups or individuals in Farnworth can bid for up to £15,000 for any project they put forward.

£10,000 comes from money seized from criminals under the Proceeds of Crime Act (POCA) and £5,000 from the council’s Community Safety Budget.

Applications will be vetted by a committee, and those who meet the criteria will go through to a Dragons’ Den style presentation before members of the public in March.

The Giving Back scheme will particularly focus on the deprived area of New Bury, which police have identified as being the area of Bolton worst hit by anti-social behaviour.

Sergeant Alex Metcalfe, of GMP’s Bolton Borough, said: “All the divisions across GMP are given £10,000, and we look at where our biggest issues for anti-social behaviour are.

“It has been identified that Farnworth, and in particular New Bury suffers from anti-social behaviour more than elsewhere and there’s a real opportunity with the residents to make some changes.

He continued: “We know there’s massive under-reporting. People tolerate behaviour they shouldn’t have to. We are looking to use this funding to reduce anti-social behaviour, with the community deciding what projects best deliver that.

“POCA is ultimately money we have taken the off criminals and putting it back into the community.”

Sgt Metcalfe stresses that police ‘don’t have all the answers’ when it comes to tackling the issue of anti-social behaviour.

He said: “We want them to come forward and tell us how we can help. It’s a case of ‘we have got some funding, how do you want us to spend it?”

Applications for funding need to be made by midnight on Wednesday, February 7.

They must be made online, but anyone who needs assistance can go along to a ‘support day’ at New Bury Ucan Centre, in George Street, on January 24.

The final event, where members of the community will decide which projects receive the money, is to be held at St James’ High School, in Lucas Road, on Saturday, March 3.

To apply, and for more information, visit