A charity operating in the south west of England has been awarded a £370,000 grant for its work with lesbian gay bisexual and trans people in Cornwall, Devon, Dorset and Somerset.

The Intercom Trust will use the National Lottery money to provide infrastructure support for independent lesbian gay bisexual and trans community groups and help local LGBT people set up new groups to provide local services through the Lynx South West project.

The Trust faced stiff competition across the whole country for a BASIS grant from the Big Lottery Fund, which will support Lynx projects for the next three years.

Paul Roberts, Intercom’s community development manager, said:

“This is fantastic news, and will be welcomed by all who care about building stronger rural communities and combating isolation and social exclusion.

“It means that we can not only continue providing the services that are being asked for by the independent groups, but we can now develop the new services that have identified.

“A secure intranet for sharing local information resources, a Standing Council of independent groups to help identify the needs of the communities and shape our partnership work, and better networking between the community groups and with the public authorities and other voluntary organisations.”

The £370,343 grant is the second major piece of funding the Trust has secured this year.

In August the Home Office gave the Intercom Trust £28,290, to fund their work in rural south west England supporting victims of homophobia and other forms of hate crime.

They will create a network of LGBT agencies and develop partnerships with Criminal Justice System agencies.