APPLICATIONS opened last week for the £92 million Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage, which is aimed at helping heritage organisations to recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Funds will be distributed by The National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic England on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.
The new Fund is part of the wider £1.57billion Culture Recovery Fund announced by Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden earlier this month, which is the Government’s biggest ever one-off investment in the sector.
The Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage is open to:
- Heritage organisations managing a heritage site or visitor attraction
- Private owners of a heritage site, venue or attraction
- Organisations managing, maintaining or caring for culturally significant assets or collections
- Businesses that are a vital part of the heritage ecosystem, including conservators, contractors, specialists and suppliers
- Organisations that manage culturally significant assets or collections
- Non-accredited museums are eligible.- (Accredited museums and those working towards accreditation should apply to the Culture Recovery Fund through Arts Council England.)
Organisations are urged to apply swiftly before the deadline of midday on Monday 17 August.
Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:
“For many heritage organisations this funding will be the lifeline they have been waiting for and I urge them to apply as soon as possible. As the lockdown has lifted, and the public begins to return to some of our much-loved places, the true value of our heritage is more obvious than ever. It is vital in creating economic prosperity, in making local communities better places to live, and in supporting our own personal sense of wellbeing. We remain dedicated to helping the heritage sector emerge from this crisis with strength and resilience so that it can thrive once again.”
Sir Laurie Magnus, Chairman of Historic England said:
“The effect of COVID-19 on our heritage has been wide-reaching. The historic places that help define us are at risk of being lost forever. This Government emergency funding package of £92m, which we will deliver in partnership with the National Lottery Heritage Fund, will be a lifeline for the heritage sector. England’s heritage is worth £31 billion to the economy, supports nearly half a million jobs and engages even more volunteers. It has a central role to play as the country moves towards a sustainable recovery. This crucial funding will help the organisations and businesses who look after our locally-cherished historic sites. It is a recognition that investing directly in historic places can bring wide-ranging social benefits, inspiring communities to engage with their past and encouraging creativity, regeneration and growth.”
Successful applicants for grants need to have an innovative plan for how they will operate and be sustainable for the remainder of this financial year. They also need to be able to demonstrate their international, national or local significance. Smaller, local organisations should demonstrate the role they play in cultural engagement with people from all backgrounds, the opportunities they create and how they benefit their local community and area. It doesn’t matter if they have received funding before. Grants are available from £10,000 up to £3million.
Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:
“Help is on the way to our much loved cultural and heritage organisations with our £1.57billion fund. This support package will protect buildings, organisations and people to help ensure our wonderful institutions, big and small, pull through COVID-19.
“Today we’re publishing guidance so organisations know how to access help. We’re also calling on organisations to be creative in diversifying their income streams and the public to continue supporting the places they love so this funding can be spread as far and wide as possible.”
The guidance and application process, which has been made as straightforward as possible, is available at https://www.heritagefund.org.uk/funding/culture-recovery-fund-for-heritage. After applications close at midday on Monday 17 August, decisions on awards will be made in late September.
The wider Culture Recovery Fund is the biggest ever one-off investment in UK culture. Grants of up to £3 million will be allocated to arts, cultural and heritage organisations to protect important cultural assets and ensure arts and heritage continues to play a key role in levelling up the country. Separate portions of the funding are being distributed by Arts Council England for arts and culture, and the British Film Institute for film and cinema – and in collaboration with The National Lottery Heritage Fund.