Culture Secretary Maria Miller has announced a further £5million of Government funding – on top of the £80million already committed (see NSS June issue) – ahead of English Heritage getting a new status as a charity that has to raise its own funds.
Details of proposed changes to English Heritage and the way in which the 400 or so historic properties it cares for are managed, conserved and made accessible to the public were unveiled this month (December) in a public consultation paper (click here to read the paper) following an announcement of the decision to set up the charity earlier in the year.
The Government money, intended to be matched by private donations raised by English Heritage, is to bring the English Heritage properties into good condition ahead of converting English Heritage into a privately funded charity. The new charity, which will retain the name of English Heritage, will manage all of the historic sites. It is proposed that the sites will remain in public ownership, at least initially.
Being a charity will mean English Heritage has to raise its own funds to look after the properties in the future rather than the Government providing the money out of taxes.
The Government money and the £83million English Heritage is charged with raising from third parties, will allow the heritage body to undertake a huge programme of conservation of its properties and works as it undergoes the changes. English Heritage properties currently receive more than 6million visits a year.
English Heritage’s current duties and responsibilities for advising on and helping to conserve England’s wider historic environment will remain unchanged under the new proposals but will be carried out under the new name of ‘Historic England.’
The new funding underlines the Government’s commitment to the heritage sector and will further protect the statutory functions of Historic England in these difficult economic times, asserts Culture Secretary Maria Miller.
English Heritage Chief Executive Simon Thurley says: "I welcome the Government’s proposed New Model for English Heritage. It offers an opportunity for English Heritage to move forward with confidence and continue to deliver our important services both in leisure and tourism, and also in the vital job of ensuring that our nation’s heritage continues to play a positive part in our future.
To comment on the consultation document email [email protected]
- Or write to:
- English Heritage New Model Project Team
Department for Culture, Media and Sport
100 Parliament Street