University of Bedfordshire secures funding for heritage project

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University of Bedfordshire Arts & Culture Projects - artist & community (Rachel Cherry)
Image: Rachel Cherry

The University of Bedfordshire has been awarded £250,000 to fund a development project for communities across Bedfordshire.

Funded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund and overseen by the Arts & Culture Projects team, the project will launch this spring and run for about two-and-a-half years.

The project will continue the previous enterprise activity by TestBeds activity, extending this to support cultural and community organisations working within Bedfordshire’s heritage sector.

Emma Gill, Arts & Culture Projects Manager, who was the driving force behind the University’s successful application said the funding has arrived at the perfect time.

“COVID-19 has illustrated how vulnerable non-tangible and community heritage is if not supported.

“This is especially the case in Bedfordshire… where we have rich community heritage that is nationally and internationally applicable.

“But without local support and investment, stories will continue to be untold and practitioners will seek opportunities elsewhere.

“I am grateful to the National Lottery Heritage Fund which has supported the realisation of this project.”

April 2021 launch

While a Heritage Impact Accelerator programme will launch in April, and provide support for entrepreneurs and creatives in Luton, a Heritage Enterprise Hub will provide training sessions and events for people in Bedford and across Bedfordshire from the summer.

“I am passionate about the role the University of Bedfordshire can provide in delivering capacity-building programmes…

Equally, local communities have knowledge and specialisms that we as an institution can learn from, and the local ecology as a whole can be enriched through transactional dialogue and partnership-working.”

The National Lottery Heritage Fund helps to resource the UK’s heritage to create positive and lasting change for people and communities.

You can find out more about the University of Bedfordshire’s Heritage Project on the Arts & Culture Projects webpage.

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