Historic England

Historic England emergency fund seeks to save heritage sector from Covid cliff edge

Image: © Historic England

A second emergency fund to support the heritage sector’s recovery from the coronavirus pandemic has today been unveiled by Historic England.

The new fund, which could be worth up to £3 million across the heritage sector, will award grants to help fund urgent maintenance, repairs and investigations on the nation’s most significant historic sites.

Grants of up to £25,000 will be offered to fix urgent problems so that heritage attractions can be ready to welcome as many visitors as possible at the earliest possible point.

The hope is that this investment will also generate work for heritage specialists whose livelihoods have been severely affected by the pandemic.

How to apply

Interested parties are invited to apply for grants of up to £25,000 towards a maximum project size of £30,000 for urgent minor repairs, maintenance or development works which must be started before 31 October 2020.

The deadline for expressions of interest is midnight on 28 June 2020. Those successful at this stage will be informed by 27 July 2020 and invited to submit a full application by 31 August 2020.

Who is eligible?

Owners, leaseholders (with a 21 year full repairing lease), and charitable bodies and trustees responsible for the maintenance and repair of:

  • Buildings and structures listed at grade I and II*, that are publicly accessible for a minimum of 28 days per year
  • Buildings and structures listed at grade II that are publicly accessible for a minimum of 28 days per year only if they are situated in either:
    – a conservation area and are a significant component of the character of that conservation area
    – a grade I or II* registered park and garden
  • Scheduled monuments that are publicly accessible for a minimum of 28 days per year

Further detailed information can be found here.

The latest announcement follows the launch of Historic England’s initial fund in April – which has already provided vital support to 70 organisations. Both strands of the Covid-19 Heritage at Risk Response Fund have been informed by research carried out by the organisation to determine where money is most urgently needed.

“Informed by the findings of our survey, this emergency fund aims to generate new work for those professionals and small businesses most vulnerable within the heritage sector as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, at the same time protecting significant historic sites where our support is most needed,” explains Duncan Wilson, Historic England’s chief executive.

“It is vital that we keep the wheels of the sector turning in order to protect livelihoods and save our heritage, which enriches people’s lives and is a source of national and local pride,” he adds.