News from the Geopark

Torbay's new Local Heritage Grant Scheme is open for applications

26 Jun 2023

The Torbay local heritage grant scheme will support grassroot heritage projects with grants of up to £7,500 available.

From Monday 26 June local groups can apply for grant funding to support their heritage project.

Made possible after securing £250,000 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund, with an additional £12,500 of funding from us, the aim of the new scheme is to enable more people to get involved in Torbay's heritage and celebrate the Bays UNESCO Global Geopark designation.

The funding is specifically aimed at smaller-scale grassroots heritage projects, which otherwise may struggle to access support.

The scheme is an opportunity for local groups to think creatively about how they would like to encourage more people to be involved in heritage and as a result the area will be a better place to live, work or visit. Proposals should also demonstrate an understanding of environmental and social responsibility and be as inclusive as possible to the community.

Examples of project areas could be; a heritage society wants to fund a programme of local events which celebrate themes in the Heritage Strategy and wants to present these events during the Geopark festival in 2024 to encourage people to learn more about our UNESCO designation, or a youth group wants funding to buy equipment to create films celebrating less-known local stories so people can discover new facts about their history.

Cllr Chris Lewis, Cabinet Member for Place Services and Economic Growth for Torbay Council, said; "The aim of this scheme is to encourage people to seek support for their local heritage projects, and to involve people and communities. It may be that you have an idea that may be the start of something which you want to develop over time, but you have never had the chance to initiate before.

"Perhaps you have the start of an idea, but you want funding to develop this into something which you think may be bigger in the future. Whatever you are thinking of good luck, and we look forward to receiving your applications."

Jacob Brandon, Chair of Torbay Culture, said; "This much appreciated investment from the Heritage Fund is an important part of the collaborative approach Torbay Culture and partners have worked hard to develop in recent years. Working with Torbay Council, we look forward to seeing projects come forward for this small grant scheme to increase access to heritage in the local area and raise awareness of our UNESCO Global Geopark designation."

Stuart McLeod, Director, England - London & South, The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said; "Investing in heritage means investing in the community it belongs to, which is why we are proud to support Torbay Council with their local heritage small grants scheme. Thanks to National Lottery players, the scheme will strengthen the community by helping local people better understand the heritage and history and help others discover their own. We're lucky to have a fascinating heritage on our doorstep and we know it is a great way of bringing people together and creating a sense of pride in place, that in turn can deliver wider economic benefits."

The Torbay local heritage grant scheme will run between 2023 and 2025. Funding will be awarded in three rounds. Round 1 runs from June to August 2023, Round 2 runs from January to March 2023 and Round 3 runs from November 2024 to January 2025. All projects need to be delivered by the Autumn of 2025.

All applications will be checked for eligibility and passed to a Decision Panel for reviewing and scoring.

A Heritage Grants Advisor is in place to offer pre-application advice to potential applicants.

Further information on the scheme, along with the application process can be found on the local heritage grant scheme webpage

Torbay’s local heritage grant scheme is a collaboration between Torbay Council, Torbay Culture, and the English Riviera UNESCO Global Geopark, and made possible thanks to investment from The National Lottery Heritage Fund.