Sharing Heritage - launched at the People's History Museum in Manchester

Sharing Heritage is a new funding programme to help people across the UK explore, conserve and share all aspects of the history and character of their local area.

With a commitment from HLF of £3m each year, grants between £3,000 and £10,000 will now be available to groups who want to discover their local heritage.

This new programme follows the unprecedented success of last year's one-off HLF grant scheme 'All Our Stories', which ran in tandem with BBC Two's The Great British Story: A People’s History, presented by historian, Michael Wood. The scheme was four times oversubscribed and convinced HLF of people's appetite to get involved.

Helping to launch Sharing Heritage today at the PHM are a selection of previously funded HLF projects from the North West, based in Salford, Oldham and Manchester, including the Lost Pubs of Chapel Street.

Pubs were once the heart and soul of Salford's Chapel Street. That may have changed, but regeneration work in the area is bringing hope for some of the surviving and even derelict establishments. Lost Pubs of Chapel Street, a community-driven digital and social media project, aims to capture the changes but also show how some pubs have adapted and thrived, using their upper floors as arts and music venues, or to show exhibitions, film and plays.

“In our experience older people love new technology and are keen to learn new skills,” says David Kay, media community producer at People’s Voice Media, based close to Chapel Street in East Salford. “Pubs are places to tell stories, and our project is almost an online version of the typical pub conversation.”

HLF's new Chair of the North West Committee, Tiffany Hunt, added: “This new scheme will help shed light on the fascinating heritage of the North West, and our islands', creating an unprecedented picture of our past. From remembering Salford's pubs and conserving the Huddersfield Canal to collecting stories from Holocaust survivors in Manchester, this investment will offer a wealth of opportunities for groups to explore and celebrate what's important to them in their local area. We are looking forward to receiving an exciting variety of applications, reflecting the breadth of heritage across the North West and the rest of the UK.”

Michael Wood, HLF's 'champion' for the new programme is speaking today at the People's History Museum in Manchester, said: “We have already seen just how much people want to be able to delve into their local history and what those fascinating explorations can reveal. Community projects from last year are now underway ranging from school children discovering how Sheffield FC, the world's oldest football club, has helped shape the modern game to looking at the lost pubs of Salford that were once at the very heart and soul of the town. I can't wait to hear about the surprising stories that will come out of this new scheme. It's the people who own history and this is a great opportunity to share that history with others and future generations.”

Projects are expected to cover a wide spectrum of subject matter but could include exploring local archaeology, a community's cultures and traditions, identifying and recording local wildlife and protecting the surrounding environment, collecting and digitising old photos, producing local history publications, conserving sites or items of local significance, managing and training volunteers, and holding festivals and events to commemorate the past.

Notes to editors

  • Sharing Heritage is for any not-for-profit group wanting to explore their community’s heritage. For further information, view our Sharing Heritage page.
  • All Our Stories was developed in response to HLF's Strategic Framework consultation with both the public and heritage sector. Based on this, HLF has made applying for funding simpler and easier for first-time applicants and community groups. Last year, All Our Stories grants were promoted through five BBC Learning events at flagship heritage locations and regional events across the UK which ran in tandem with BBC Two's The Great British Story: A People's History series which inspired people to get involved with their local heritage. These events provided opportunities for people to discover their place in history and uncover the history of their local area and encouraged applications to HLF.
  • The All Our Stories programme was four times oversubscribed with a total investment from HLF of £4.5m. Over 500 successful projects were announced in November 2012 and are currently underway.
  • Sharing Heritage is being launched at the People’s History Museum in Manchester on Tuesday 19 February by Michael Wood who will be accompanied by a range of HLF-funded community heritage projects, including the aforementioned Lost Pubs of Chapel Street, examples of which can be found below.
  • Huddersfield Canal Audio Landscape Project - Since its formation in 1974, Huddersfield Canal Society (HCS) has secured the canal's restoration and re-opening for public use, and now has an active role in its maintenance and promotion, including an on-going outreach programme to raise awareness of the heritage to both visitors and residents of the canal corridor. The Huddersfield Canal Audio Landscape Project will use digital technology alongside a local theatre group to promote the heritage of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal.
  • Triumph over Adversity: A Celebration of the lives of Holocaust Survivors in Greater Manchester - The Council of Manchester and Salford Jews Charitable Trust (CMSJCT) devised Triumph over Adversity: A Celebration of the lives of Holocaust Survivors in Greater Manchester to explore and celebrate the heritage of Holocaust survivors living in Manchester. The project focuses on the stories and memories of Holocaust survivors living in Manchester - all the survivors are now quite old, with the youngest in their eighties, and some are only now coming to terms with what happened to them.

Further information

HLF press office: Laura Bates or James Steward on 020 7591 6027 / 6056, mobile: 07973 613 820.

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