Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust receives £149,900 National Lottery support

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust has received £149,900 National Lottery support to help address the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on heritage

Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust has received £149,900 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund. The money will help cover essential running costs of our Volunteer Training Centre at Rutland Water Nature Reserve. The centre is a vital resource; providing a space to carry out volunteer activities, support the development of Trainee Reserves Officers, run conservation and nature based training courses, amongst other areas of our work and strategic development.

Volunteer Training Centre

Volunteer Training Centre at Rutland Water Nature Reserve

With the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown in place, Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust was forced to put a halt to all volunteering activities and events due to social distancing measures. Thanks to this funding, we will be able to restart activities safely and provide volunteering opportunities for the local community securely for the next year.

The funding will also help secure the future of our biggest annual event, The Birdfair. Dubbed ‘the birdwatcher’s Glastonbury’, it is a premier event in the natural history calendar, drawing in thousands of visitors from across the world every year. For the first time in 31 years, during which £5 million has been raised for nature conservation, we made the difficult decision to cancel this year’s event, losing a significant amount of money.

Tim Graham, CEO at Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust said:

“Thanks to the National Lottery and its players we can now feel assured that our Volunteer Training Centre will continue to provide a place for volunteering and training at Rutland Water Nature Reserve. We can also start to plan for the next Birdfair and get ready to bring back a bigger and better event for 2021. We’re grateful that The National Lottery Heritage Fund is supporting us at this crucial time – it’s a lifeline to us and others who are passionate about sustaining heritage for the benefit of all.”

The funding, made possible by National Lottery players, was awarded through The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s Heritage Emergency Fund. £50million was made available to provide emergency funding for those most in need across the heritage sector.

The UK-wide fund aimed to address both immediate emergency actions and help organisations to start thinking about recovery.

Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive of The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “Heritage has an essential role to play in making communities better places to live, supporting economic regeneration and benefiting our personal wellbeing. All of these things are going to be even more important as we emerge from this current crisis.

“Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players we are pleased to be able to lend our support to organisations such as Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust during this uncertain time.”

Like Leicestershire and Rutland Wildlife Trust, other charities and organisations across the UK that have been affected by the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus outbreak are being given access to a comprehensive package of support of up to £600 million of repurposed money from The National Lottery. This money is supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and span the arts, community, charity, heritage, education, environment and sports sectors.

Thanks to National Lottery players, £30 million is raised every week for good causes, including heritage of local and national importance. By playing The National Lottery, people up and down the country are making an amazing contribution to the nationwide-response to combatting the impact of COVID-19 on local communities across the UK.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s Heritage Emergency Fund is now closed for applications. To find out more about how The National Heritage Emergency Fund is supporting the sector at this time please visit: https://www.heritagefund.org.uk/responding-coronavirus-covid-19

To find out more about the National Lottery Good Causes , visit: www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk/coronavirus-pandemic-response

Volunteers at Birdfair

Volunteers at Birdfair - Eric Renno