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Culture Recovery Grant for Navy Wings

The Government’s Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage has made a headline grant of £280,000 to Navy Wings as part of a £1.57 billion rescue package for culture and heritage organisations across the UK.

Navy Wings is one of 445 heritage organisations to have been awarded financial assistance from the first round of the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage helping safeguard the Nation’s culture and heritage organisations from the economic impact of the coronavirus pandemic.

The vital funding is from from the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage and the Heritage Stimulus Fund, funded by Government and administered by Historic England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Both funds are part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund which is designed to secure the future of Britain’s cherished heritage attractions, helping with the costs of operating, reopening and recovery and supporting those working in the sector.

“This funding is a lifeline for Navy Wings” said Commodore Jock Alexander OBE, the Chief Executive of Navy Wings. “We are absolutely delighted. With all air shows and events cancelled this year, the aircraft have remained grounded and we have lost thousands of pounds of income. The money will be used to keep essential staff working to maintain our historic aircraft and continue our vital fundraising work allowing us to emerge from the pandemic with renewed strength and resilience. With aviation and heritage among the sectors most severely impacted by the crisis, Navy Wings has faced a double hit of challenges and we could not be more grateful for this transformational grant.”

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said “As a nation it is essential that we preserve our heritage and celebrate and learn from our past. This massive support package will protect our shared heritage for future generations, save jobs and help us prepare for a cultural bounce back post Covid.”

Duncan Wilson, Historic England’s Chief Executive said “It is heartening to see grants from the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund helping heritage sites and organisations across the country which have been hit hard by the effects of Covid-19. These grants range from giving skilled workers the chance to keep their trades alive to helping heritage organisations pay the bills and to kick start restoration and repair work at our best loved heritage sites. The funding is an essential lifeline for our heritage and the people who work tirelessly to conserve it for us all, so that we can hand it on to future generations.”

Navy Wings had stepped in to save the Royal Navy’s rare and important collection of historic naval aircraft keeping them flying on behalf of the nation, when the pandemic struck. “The timing could not have been worse!” said Jock Alexander. “Although we took all mitigating actions possible to ensure we could continue to take on the financial and operating responsibilities for this priceless collection, there is no doubt, we would have faced an uncertain future without this grant.”

“Our heritage aircraft are of great historical significance to our national heritage, embodying not only the story of Britain’s naval air power, but the world leading achievements of British engineering, design, and manufacture through the most exciting and innovative decades of aviation history. They are beacons of hope for the future and the Culture Recovery Fund will enable us to keep them flying as a source of pride for communities up and down the country, bringing the history of naval flying alive to modern audiences and making a strong contribution to the wider cultural and heritage sector at the national level.”

Heritage attractions may be about the past, but in countless important ways they are about the future too, providing life enhancing learning and inspiration across wide sectors of society. Other heritage organisations benefitting from the Culture Recovery Fund for Heritage include Blyth Tall Ship, the Severn Valley Railway, Bomber Command Centre, Lincoln and the Piece Hall in Halifax.

Here for Culture is a movement that unites the public, government and cultural organisations in support of our fantastic cinemas, theatres, music venues, museums, galleries and heritage.

Whether on the global stage or quietly in our own lives, culture inspires, uplifts, comforts and entertains us. Now, in these challenging times, it’s our turn to provide a lifeline and show our support. The government is #HereForCulture with an unprecedented £1.57 billion of funding coming through on top of the furlough scheme, bounce-back loans and emergency grants. The public has been #HereForCulture as organisations have innovated online and outdoors.