What we mean by place
‘Place’ can mean many things, and definitions vary depending on where you are or who you ask. But examples include a local community, a natural landscape or an entire city.
How heritage supports great places
Many areas across the UK have a ‘sense of place’ that inspires local pride and increases wellbeing.
Heritage sits at the heart of a place’s identity, adding depth, character and value. This can include buildings and monuments, landscapes, high streets and parks.
Heritage helps connect people and communities to a place and boosts local economic prosperity.
Our funding for heritage projects
We welcome projects that take a 'place-based approach'. Place-based working is about:
- identifying challenges and opportunities in the heritage of a place
- developing responses which bring about benefits for both the heritage and the place
- thinking beyond an individual project by considering how it relates to your local area and community
- partnering or coordinating with other organisations to increase the impact of your project
The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has made this way of working more important than ever. The pandemic has had a devastating impact on communities and local economies in places across the UK.
The heritage sector can play a leading role in their recovery, which is why we refocused our priorities for our National Lottery Grants for Heritage in 2021-22. We are now prioritising projects with outcomes that create better places to live, work and visit, and boost local economies.
See our funding programmes to find out how to apply.
A place funder, not just a project funder
We also support place-based working by:
- devolving decision-making, which enables locally based staff, with local expertise, to assess applications and make awards
- addressing under-representation in our funding of geographical areas experiencing deprivation
- working with local councils and others to connect our funding to wider local priorities
- working with national partners and agencies on major place-based initiatives
Running a place-based project
Need help or inspiration?
You can find useful guidance here:
And discover how heritage can create better places in the project examples below.
A derelict site in Cynon Valley has been transformed into a community garden full of people, nature and wildlife – and is now the perfect place for boosting mental health.
Running from March to September 2022, the £12million festival will feature hundreds of artistic commissions, engaging a local and national audience with Birmingham’s cultural heritage.
Sported Foundation have been awarded a £24,861 National Lottery grant to explore the history of sport and how it plays a part in Northern Ireland's identity.
We have awarded more than £8million to this ground-breaking project that addresses climate change, carbon emissions, biodiversity loss and the mental health and wellbeing of young people.
We have awarded nearly £12.5million to a life-changing project aiming to preserve the UK’s biggest National Park, bringing communities together to help nature and improve wellbeing.
We are granting £9.5million to support the creation of Plymouth Sound's 'Park in the Sea', helping communities and tackling the effects of climate change.
At an acute and immediate risk of loss, the UK’s last surviving historic winter gardens will be receiving an almost £10million grant as part of the Heritage Horizon Awards.