Scotland: committee meeting minutes March 2021

Minutes of the meeting of the Committee for Scotland held virtually on 10 March at 9.30am.


  • Ray Macfarlane (Chair)  
  • Sam Anderson 
  • Liz Davidson 
  • Gillian Findlay  
  • Stuart Housden 
  • Alice Mayne 
  • Beltus Ojong Etchu 
  • Martyn Wade 


  • None

Committee Business

  1. Welcomes and apologies

The Chair welcomed everyone to the final meeting of the financial year for the Committee for Scotland noting that this meeting was again being held virtually due to the Government restrictions in relation to the pandemic. 

The Chair extended a warm welcome to:

  • Eilish McGuinness,  Executive Director, the Executive representative for the meeting.
  • Amanda Feather, Head of Built Heritage and Regeneration Policy UK invited to update members on the Place framework.
  • Anne Young, Director of Strategy and Innovation attending to provide an update on the re-opening of the National Lottery Grants for Heritage.
  • The Chair noted that Paul Parry, Head of Business Delivery Support Services and Leo Seymour, ROSS Framework Manager will join the meeting at item 8 to provide an update on the ROSS framework.
  1. Minutes from the last meeting held on 2 December 2020 and matters arising

  • Martyn Wade requested that the minutes relating to René Olivieri’s discussion of the impact of the Covid 19 pandemic and the longer term issues facing the heritage sector be corrected to read: the Fund should consider misinformation; ‘contested’ heritage and decolonisation of heritage and how to achieve the balance of competing ideas and interpretations.   This was agreed and the minutes subsequently signed by the Chair.
  1. Chair’s Report

The Chair noted the following:

  • Sincere thanks to both Beltus Ojong Etchu and Gillian Findlay for their time; commitment and expertise that they have brought to the Fund during their time as Committee for Scotland Members.  She noted that they will both be greatly missed, and this was echoed by members of the Executive, Committee and Staff.   Gillian expressed her thanks for the kind words.   Beltus too noted his thanks to Committee and staff, noting the learning journey that the Committee has provide. The Chair noted that the Committee and staff had, in return, learnt a great amount from both Beltus and Gillian’s expertise. 
  • Stuart Housden has been appointed for a second term as a Committee for Scotland member. Stuart noted that he was delighted to have his term extended and to continue to be involved in the inspirational work of the Fund.
  • The Chair expressed her thanks  to everyone involved in the Race and Heritage Series with particular thanks  to Sam Anderson  for her continued involvement in hosting the meeting and involvement in the Steering group.
  1. Corporate Update

Eilish McGuinness, Executive Director of Business Delivery, provided an update on corporate activity,  Key points noted were as follows:

  • Eilish thanked both Beltus and Gillian for all their great work with the Fund and also offered her  congratulations to Stuart for his reappointment for a second term.
  • Dr Simon Thurley CBE has been appointed as the new Chair of the Fund and will take over from the interim Chair, René Olivieri from 1 April 2021.  It was highlighted that Simon brings with him an in-depth knowledge of the heritage sector and extensive leadership experience across a wide range of heritage organisations.
  • A wider proposition on Place is being developed to create an offer to partners and places on how they can work with the Fund to deliver sustained change in their communities.
  1. Country Director’s Report

The paper was presented by Caroline Clark, Director for Scotland and the following key areas were highlighted:

  • This financial year has seen significant investment to organisations across Scotland which has been critical to supporting the survival of organisations caring for heritage of all types many of which have faced unprecedented challenges due to the pandemic.  
  • This forthcoming financial year will see the Scotland team host a 2027 intern, a 12-month salaried programme which recruits frontline workers from working-class communities, and prepares them for decision-making roles in grant-making organisations.  It is hoped that the position will be filled by July 2021.
  • Caroline thanked Stuart Housden, Committee for Scotland member for offering his insight into environmental sustainability and how we may drive this through our grant making in the future.  Liz Davidson was thanked for her support using her expertise to inform the Fund’s Place-making Framework.
  1. Country Budget Overview

The paper was presented by Riona McMorrow, Head of Investment and noted the following.

  • There are no cases for decision or discussion due to the pausing of the National Lottery Grants for Heritage.  Our open programmes are now re-opened and the first cases for decision will be presented at the forthcoming June meeting.
  • There is an expectation of increased demand against the Committee budget for the next financial year in relation to grant  increases on projects in delivery due to COVID related costs.
  1. Re-opening of the National Lottery Grants for Heritage

Anne Young, Director of Strategy and Innovation and Caroline Clark, Director for Scotland updated members about the re-opening of the National Lottery Grants for heritage (NLGH) which launched in February 2021.   Applications for NLGH were paused due to the pandemic and the Fund’s emergency response for the heritage sector, and have now opened up again for applications.

  1. Ross Framework Presentation

The Chair welcomed Paul Parry, Head of Business Delivery Support Services and Leo Seymour, ROSS Framework Manager who joined the meeting to provide an update for attendees on the Register of Support Services (ROSS) framework.

  1. Place Framework Update

Amanda Feather, Head of Built Heritage and Regeneration Policy UK at the Fund provided an update about the Place framework and what work has been done to date and what will be done in Scotland in the coming year.   

  1. Reflections of the Race and Heritage Series and Decolonisation session

Committee members reflected on the Race and Heritage Series of Curated Perspectives to date. The work undertaken by the Scotland Committee and team fits with and enhances the work of the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) review which is currently being undertaken by the Fund and which will be presented to the Board of Trustees at this month’s meeting. 

  1. Any other business

No further business was noted.

The next meeting will be held on Wednesday 9 June 2021