The Centenary of the First World War is a chance to understand the war, uncover its stories and explore what it means to us today. At a recent Parliamentary event, Alex Chalk MP found out more about how the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) supports projects across the UK that focus not just on the events of 1914–1918 but also on the lasting changes brought about by the Great War.
Alex is encouraging community groups in Cheltenham to consider applying to the Heritage Lottery Fund for projects relating to the First World War.
HLF is making at least £1million a year available until 2019 as part of the First World War: Then and Now programme for small, community grants of between £3,000 and £10,000. The money will enable groups across the UK and here in Cheltenham to explore, conserve and share their First World War heritage and deepen their understanding of the impact of the conflict.
Alex urges anyone who would like to apply for funding to think about how they would like to mark the Centenary. Successful projects will include:
• researching, identifying and recording local heritage;
• creating a community archive or collection;
• developing new interpretation of heritage through exhibitions, trails, smartphone apps etc;
• researching, writing and performing creative material based on heritage sources;
• conserving and finding out more about war memorials
Speaking after the event, Alex said: “I’m delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund is making this money available to local communities. Like many areas across the UK, the impact of the First World War on the people of Cheltenham was profound. The sheer number of names on the town's war memorials stand as a poignant reminder of the town’s sacrifice. For those who want to find out more about the legacy of the conflict or who wish to mark the Centenary, I would urge them to get in touch with the Heritage Lottery Fund.”
Nerys Watts, Head of Heritage Lottery Fund South West England, said: “The impact of the First World War was far reaching, touching and shaping every corner of the UK and beyond. The Heritage Lottery Fund’s First World War: then and now programme will enable communities to explore the continuing legacy of this war and help young people in particular to broaden their understanding of how it has shaped our modern world.”
Since April 2010, HLF has awarded over £70million to more than 1,300 projects – large and small – that will mark the Centenary of First World War. If a group have a project idea to mark the Centenary of the First World War, an online application pack is available http://www.hlf.org.uk/ThenAndNow. If a group needs a grant of more than £10,000 for a First World War project, it can apply to HLF through its open programmes.