MORE than 50 community representatives turned up to a meeting to register their interest in applying for tens of thousands of pounds.
Some 53 organisations are vying for grants from housing association Colne Housing to improve their communities.
The project, called Colne Community Builders, was launched on Wednesday at Firstsite, and will distribute the money to groups in Colchester, Maldon and Tendring.
Alistair Heron, community development officer at Colne Housing, said: “We want to hear creative ideas from groups that understand what’s needed in their community and are committed to making a lasting difference.
“We will also be talking to other local funders to see how we can work more effectively together.”