WINCHESTER civic chiefs met to discuss the security of nearly three quarters of a million pounds for local charities.

Councillors agreed £722,825 be allocated for voluntary and community organisations across Winchester.

Keystone Winchester Churches Housing, Winchester Churches Night Shelter and the Winchester Rent Deposit Scheme retain their core funding.

Cllr Keith Wood, chairman of the cabinet, said: “At the moment we are guaranteeing that the existing charities do as well as they can and maybe even better.”

Elosie Appleby, assistant director for economic prosperity, said: “I hope it will help is get money out to places that it will really help. This year will see a pretty thorough review of the whole situation. This could be quite a big year.”

The bulk of these funds comes from Core Funding which covers such costs as overheads. In addition, the council provides one-off grants for various projects often helping organisations to attract match-funding from elsewhere.