Great Dorset Steam Fair among nearly 140 heritage organisations to benefit from share of the £15.5 million latest round of awards

Great Dorset Steam Fair in Tarrant Hinton has received a grant of £156,000 from the Government’s latest round of the Culture Recovery Fund to help the organisation recover from the impact of the Covid pandemic.


Martin Oliver, Managing Director, Great Dorset Steam Fair, said:

“Following our recent application, we are delighted to have been awarded support from Round 3 of the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage. The Coronavirus Pandemic has been devasting to the event industry and this grant will help safeguard the sustainability of the event as we begin planning the next show in 2022. The grant will be used towards essential operating costs.

The Great Dorset Steam Fair (as The National Heritage Show) is unquestionably the keystone event which showcases Great Britain’s rich industrial, rural and leisure history. Being widely recognised as the World’s leading steam heritage and vintage vehicle event, its importance in the heritage events calendar is immeasurable. The event is, in effect, the largest working/living museum of its type in the world, inspiring and educating a whole new generation and attracting huge numbers of visitors each year into the local area from the UK and abroad.”


Nearly 140 heritage organisations in England will benefit from £15.5 million this Christmas thanks to the government’s unprecedented Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage.

This winter sites like Alexandra Park and Palace and The British Music Experience in Liverpool will receive a share of £14.8 million in continuity support grants as part of this next round of funding. Almost £1 million in emergency grants will also be awarded to 12 Heritage organisations struggling to survive, providing them with a financial lifeline.

A total of £138 million has been awarded to heritage organisations from the three rounds of the government’s £2 billion Culture Recovery Fund support package made available for arts, culture and heritage organisations during the pandemic. This third round of grants are part of the additional £300 million announced by the Chancellor at March’s Budget.


Heritage Minister Nigel Huddleston said:

“I’m delighted that this vital funding from our unprecedented Culture Recovery Fund is giving so many brilliant heritage organisations a helping hand this winter. I want everyone to enjoy what our fascinating and diverse heritage has to offer and with this money we’re safeguarding these organisations for generations to come.”


Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“This latest round of the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage provides a welcome Christmas boost for Heritage organisations. With the situation changing daily, the funding will be crucial in helping heritage sites navigate their seasonal activities ensuring the safety of their visitors and their communities. The grants will also support organisations in implementing business plans as they work round the challenges for the coming year, helping financial sustainability and driving tourism so that we can look to a bright future for our heritage sector.”


Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive, Historic England said:

“We are delighted that the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage grants continue to keep so many heritage organisations going. From major historic buildings to small community organisations promoting local heritage – all deserve this support, to continue to open up to everyone the opportunities that our shared history creates.”


Investing in heritage will support Covid19 economic recovery and make communities better places to live, creating jobs, driving tourism and improving wellbeing.

The Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage is administered by the National Lottery Heritage Fund, in partnership with Historic England on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

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