YOUTH groups in Crewkerne, Chard and Ilminster are set for a happy New Year after receiving a cash boost.

South Somerset police and organisers of youth clubs are jumping for joy after being awarded grants totalling £3,500.

The money is coming from Somerset Crimebeat, a charitable trust supported by Avon and Somerset Police, local authority Youth and Community Services, and the Probation Service.

The application for cash was made by Crewkerne neighbourhood Sergeant Richard Barnett and colleagues from Active Learning & Skills, a not-for-profit organisation which runs the district’s youth centres.

Sgt Barnett said: “It will allow us to do much more in 2014 to really engage with young people and help them make their community a better place to be.”

He urged more youth groups to take advantage of opportunities and grants available from Somerset Crimebeat.

He said: “Any youth project can apply for cash funding and I’d encourage more to do so. The money’s there – all you have to do is present your case.

“Anyone who wants to apply should contact their local beat team for advice, and we can support your application in partnership to the sheriff of Somerset’s office.”