Heritage Crafts has received funding from Sussex Heritage Trust to provide a grant of up to £2,000 through the Heritage Crafts’ Endangered Crafts Fund, which was launched in 2019 to increase the likelihood of endangered crafts surviving into the next generation.
Heritage Crafts published the fourth edition of its ground breaking Red List of Endangered Crafts in May this year, the first research of its kind to rank the UK’s traditional crafts by the likelihood that they will survive into the next generation. The report assessed 259 crafts to understand those at greatest risk of disappearing. Sadly, four were classified as ‘extinct’, 84 as ‘endangered’ and a further 62 as ‘critically endangered’.
As a result of this alarming threat to our cultural heritage, Heritage Crafts set up its Endangered Crafts Fund in 2019. Nationally, 59 grants have been awarded through the Fund since 2019.
Applicants based in Sussex can apply for a grant for any amount up to £2,000 which can cover or contribute towards:
● training to learn a new craft or technique;
● training for an apprentice to pass on skills and knowledge;
● investing in more efficient tools and machinery;
● developing reduced-carbon routes to market;
● exploring the use of alternative materials while maintaining the heritage character of your practice; or
● innovative approaches to supporting and promoting endangered crafts.
Only crafts listed as endangered or critically endangered on the 2023 edition of the Red List of Endangered Crafts are eligible. In addition to the funding recipients will also receive support from the Endangered Crafts Manager and the Heritage Crafts team to ensure that their project is a success. This will be unique to each project but could include mentor support, business support or signposting to other opportunities.
Mary Lewis, Endangered Crafts Manager at Heritage Crafts, said:
“A combination of COVID, Brexit restrictions and spiralling energy costs have put additional pressure on the craftspeople who nurture some of our most important cultural traditions and skills. We are delighted to be working in partnership with the Sussex Heritage Trust to address the specific challenges to endangered skills and knowledge in Sussex.”
Helen Reeve, CEO at Sussex Heritage Trust, said:
“Protecting the future of building conservation skills and crafts is at the centre of the work of the Sussex Heritage Trust. It is more important than ever that the many craftspeople in Sussex, working in endangered crafts and skills, are supported and nurtured.”
The fund is now open for applications via the Heritage Crafts website at www.heritagecrafts.org.uk/ecf-apply, with a closing date of Friday 6 October 2023. In addition to the Sussex grant there are also grants available in the rest of the UK.
For more information about the Endangered Crafts Fund, email Tessa Osman, Heritage Crafts Grants and Awards Officer, at firstname.lastname@example.org.