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Stoke-on-Trent to benefit from share of £200m Heritage Places Funding

Stoke-on-Trent is one of the first places in England to benefit from a share of The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s £200 million Heritage Places initiative, receiving £249,332 to develop a Heritage Collaboration Framework for the area.

Known as the World Capital of Ceramics, Stoke-on Trent and its six towns form the centre of the renowned pottery-producing region of Staffordshire, alongside award-winning museums and visitor centres.

The funding will support extensive community and stakeholder engagement across Stoke-on-Trent to map out and develop heritage needs, current activities, and future opportunities. Convened by Stoke-on-Trent City Council, activities will include convening forums, workshops, focus groups, and digital participation platforms to ensure expertise and experiences are shared across each of the six towns.

Smaller voluntary groups and organisations will also be supported to participate. Additionally, fundraising advisory sessions will be provided to help groups prepare funding bids and business cases for heritage projects.

The goal is to co-create a shared vision and strategic roadmap to guide future heritage regeneration funding and programmes. This will aim to bring together community, heritage and cultural leaders to create a tangible long term plan.

The framework also aims to integrate with other Stoke-on-Trent heritage initiatives underway such as the establishment of a Heritage Steering Group, development of a wider Heritage Strategy for the city, and plans for a Stoke-on-Trent Heritage Trust working with Re-Form Heritage who have recently been awarded funding from the Architectural Heritage Fund to form a Development Trust for Stoke-on-Trent.

Robyn Llewellyn, Director of England Midlands and East at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“At the Heritage Fund, we believe in the power of heritage to create positive and lasting change, now and in the future. We also believe that working at scale in an area can deliver profound impact for its local community, visitors, and economy.

“This is why we are delighted to be investing £250,000 through our Heritage Places initiative to develop strategic and long-lasting partnerships in Stoke-on-Trent so that community-led placemaking and heritage can thrive.”

Alasdair Brooks, chief executive of Re-Form Heritage, commented:

“I am delighted to learn that Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s application for early development funding from The National Lottery Heritage Fund has been successful.  This funding to develop a Stoke-on-Trent Heritage Collaboration Framework through commissioning and undertaking extensive consultation and engagement with communities and stakeholders across the city will play an important role in working toward a shared town/city-wide vision and focus aligned to, and in support of, the Council’s new Heritage Places initiative.

“This is an exciting time for heritage initiatives in Stoke-on-Trent.  Between this latest successful application, the recent announcement that Stoke-on-Trent would be one of the first nine priority locations in the UK set to benefit from a share of £200 million from the Heritage Fund targeted to unlock the potential of their heritage under the new Heritage Places scheme, and our own recently successful application to have Re-Form Heritage designated as a Heritage Development Trust for Stoke-on-Trent under a new Architectural Heritage Fund and The National Lottery Heritage Fund programme, there is a real feeling of forward momentum when it comes to improving the future of this remarkable city’s internationally significant heritage.”

Heritage Places is one of the long-term initiatives The National Lottery Heritage Fund will be introducing as part of its new 10-year strategy, Heritage 2033, to help address the challenges heritage faces and increase the contribution it makes to people and places.


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