The project is being funded under the Arts and Humanities Research Council’s (AHRC) Connected Communities initiative, which aims to encourage understanding of the changing nature of communities and community values and the impact which their heritage and cultural contexts have on our quality of life.
The University of Nottingham has been awarded £25,000 by the initiative, £5,000 of which has been earmarked as a ‘Challenge Fund’ specifically for community projects. The voluntary organisations will be able to join forces with a Nottingham academic to bid for a grant of £500 which will fund a specific local heritage project for a period of six months.
The money could support site visits, the costs of gathering research materials, recording people’s memories, documenting customs and traditions, and presenting the results of the project. It is hoped the money will also put the groups in a stronger position to bid for other pots of cash available through organisations such as the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF), and particularly the HLF All Our Stories programme, to allow their project to continue on in the future.
The Connected Communities funding will also be used by arts and humanities academics at the University to deliver a series of open days and workshops outlining opportunities for local groups and to further develop their university’s links with organisations including Derbyshire County Archives and Derby City Council local libraries, Yorkshire Archaeological Trust, the National Trust and Durban House, home to the DH Lawrence Heritage Centre.