At the end of 2017 and early 2018, Heritage Lottery Fund delivered a pilot scheme in Barrow-in-Furness for grants under £3,000. [see our press release on the launch here and here] Since the programme closed to applications, we have awarded 20 grants totalling £51,000. We been thrilled to fund a really wide range of projects, from supporting local churches and creative ways of engaging with the natural heritage of the areas. to exploring the LGBT Heritage of the area and capturing peoples stories of working and living in the area [read about all the funded projects on our #BarrowsHeritage blog]
It has been a great learning curve for everyone involved, both as the grant funder and for our applicants. We received really useful and valued feedback on HLF’s application process and have been evaluating how we might use this approach in our forthcoming new Funding Framework.
There are more blog posts about the process and approach we took, and the sorts of sessions we ran for local groups and organisations to come and talk to us about their project ideas. We thought it would be useful to share some of top tips that emerged from our work on the microgrant approach that could help your organisation apply to one HLF’s smaller grant programmes, Sharing Heritage or First World War, which are open until January 2019 [more info on that here]
- You don’t need to cram lots and lots of things into one project – your activities and plans should link up
- Don’t feel you need to fill in your application in ‘funding speak’ – let the passion you have for your project come through, it will make it easier to read for the assessing officer
- Plan your time – think about the order in which you need to do things and how long everything is going to take
- If you have a question, speak to the funder – we love to hear from you and if you have a question, it is better to ask before you submit an application
- Finally, we always say this, but read the guidance and make sure you are answering the question in the form. It is not there to catch you out but we do need to know what you plan to do with National Lottery money
NB: this discussion has been reposted after the original version was unintentionally deleted.