BIRMINGHAM Botanical Gardens has been awarded £47,500 from the National Lottery Heritage Emergency Fund to help it meet its running costs after closing because of the coronavirus pandemic.
The funding to the charity was awarded after the National Lottery made £50million available to those most in need across the heritage sector.
Birmingham Botanical Gardens, a 15-acre oasis in Edgbaston, just two miles from the city centre, closed its doors on March 24 when the country was put into lockdown.
It meant the nationally important heritage site has since received no revenue income from visitors, schools, events, weddings or conferences.
Elizabeth Frostick, Development Director at the Gardens, described the award as a lifeline and hugely significant for the organisation.
“This funding is enormously helpful as it supports our running costs while the Gardens are closed to the public,” she said.
“As an independent charity that relies solely on revenue from our visitors, members and charitable donations, this has given us the financial breathing space we needed. We are thrilled that the Gardens has received support from the National Lottery Heritage Fund in a highly competitive national process.
“Thanks to the National Lottery and its players we can now meet our running costs and we are now also in a position to start preparing to reopen soon, subject to social distancing rules. We’re hugely grateful that The National Lottery Heritage Fund is supporting us at this crucial time – it’s a lifeline to us and others who are passionate about sustaining heritage for the benefit of all.”
During the lockdown, the charity also raised £1,265, taking part in the 2.6 Challenge in April, the online campaign to support UK charities, with more than 30 donations from supporters.
Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive of The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:
“Heritage has an essential role to play in making communities better places to live, supporting economic regeneration and benefiting our personal wellbeing. All of these things are going to be even more important as we emerge from this current crisis.
“Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players we are pleased to be able to lend our support to organisations such as Birmingham Botanical Gardens during this uncertain time.”
Like the Gardens, other charities and organisations across the UK that have been affected by the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus outbreak are being given access to a comprehensive package of support of up to £600 million of repurposed money from The National Lottery. This money is supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and span the arts, community, charity, heritage, education, environment and sports sectors.
Thanks to National Lottery players, £30 million is raised every week for good causes, including heritage of local and national importance. By playing The National Lottery, people up and down the country are making an amazing contribution to the nationwide-response to combating the impact of Covid-19 on local communities across the UK.