Historic environment financial support

The Historic Environment Division’s aim is to ‘support and sustain vibrant communities and a strong economy through realising the significant, ongoing value of our historic environment’. One way of doing this is through providing financial assistance.

Historic Environment Fund

A Fund to bring together the full range of support that the Department can offer in this area was launched in September 2016. Applications for work in 2016/17 have now closed. Subject to available budget the Department intends to open the Fund again in the spring of 2017 for work in the financial year 2017/18.

Ths Fund is divided into four streams each with a number of routes for support. The availability of routes is dependent on budget and these will vary between financial years. The routes underway in 2016/17 are as follows:

Heritage Research Stream

This aims to help Increase understanding of our shared resource and facilitate excellence. No funding routes opened this year pending the development of a research strategy to guide allocation. For more information see Heritage Research Guidance Notes.

Heritage Repair Stream

This aims to encourage sustainability and the preservation of the historic environment. Routes open this year are:

More information is available in the Heritage Repair Stream Guidance Notes. Applicants for Listed Building Repair will be expected to carry out work to a suitable standard. This is set out in the Advisory Standards of Repair and Guidance for work to Listed Buildings.

Heritage Regeneration Stream

This aims to strengthen and improve the physical environment and foster the positive identity of places among local communities. It also aims to support third sector capacity and regeneration initiatives. Routes underway this year are:

More information is available in the Heritage Regeneration Guidance Notes

Heritage Revival Stream

This aims to promote the social value of our historic environment and the innate contribution this can make to wellbeing and sustainable employment. Routes which opened this year are:

More information is available in the Heritage Revival Guidance Notes

Historic Environment Fund

Information on the overall Fund, including an indication of support routes that may be available in future years, is provided in a summarising document: Historic Environment Fund, an Overview

Frequently Asked Questions

We have prepared a list of questions that we have anticipated that you may ask in regard to the Fund. You should look at this FAQ list before contacting us for clarification in regard to its requirements.

Progress in 2016/17

The Department received 97 applications for support by the closing date of 10 October for work in 2016/17.  82 of these were for repairs to listed buildings.  The Repair Stream was heavily oversubscribed and the short listing process set out in its guidance notes followed. This states that applications from the following categories will be considered first:

  • Buildings on the Heritage at Risk register at the end of August 2016;
  • Thatched properties;
  • Buildings whose owners are on qualifying benefits. 

43 applications were in at least one of these categories. Because the stream was still oversubscribed further prioritisation of at risk structures was then undertaken. Applications were finally considered relative to their impact upon the HEF criteria:

  1. Conservation and enhancement of the historic environment
  2. Economic impact - contribution to tourism and to supporting communities
  3. Economic impact - supporting the construction and associated industries
  4. Social benefits – creating broader and deeper understanding of our heritage
  5. Social benefits – enhancing public engagement with the historic environment

The result is that 23 repair projects have passed to the next stage of the process- detailed professional assessment and consideration of costs.

36 projects across all three Streams have been passed to this stage and a list of the applications, with an indication of which have passed, is available below:

HEF Public Consultation

This fund was subjected to a public consultation. A summary of the responses received, with the Department’s consideration, is provided in the Historic Environment Fund Synopsis

Other Financial Support

Funds for Historic Buildings Database

Further information on sources of funding available is available through the Funds for Historic Buildings database. This has been compiled by the Architectural Heritage Fund with the support of the Department. It lists over 250 separate sources of funding available in the UK for historic buildings.

War Memorials Trust Small Grants Scheme

War Memorials Trust supports the repair and conservation of war memorials. Through the centenary of World War I, the Department of Media, Culture and Sport is making an additional £2 million in one-off grant funding available. Support is available at up to 75 per cent of eligible costs, up to a maximum grant of £30,000.

Further information on sources of funding available is available through the Funds for Historic Buildings

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