St David's Day joy for St Fagans Museum as HLF reveals funding hat-trick

By Culture24 Staff | 01 March 2010
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a photo of bearded man holding a wooden board of fish and herbs

Learning at the Iron Age Village, St Fagans: National History Museum

St Fagans open-air museum is celebrating a St David’s Day windfall as the Heritage Lottery Fund announces a trio of financial backing packages that also includes a Yorkshire textile hall and new galleries at the Science Museum.

St Fagans in Cardiff is one of the UK’s earliest open-air museums and has received initial support for a £8.7m HLF bid, including £450,000 in development funding.

Plans for redeveloping the site include the introduction of the National Archaeology Collection, gallery modernisation and new storage space. The main building will also be refurbished to create a ‘Green Pavilion’ where people will be able to watch archaeologists at work. The vision for the project is to produce ‘a world class museum of learning’.

a photo of a couple walking down a stone cloister

The Piece Hall will be transformed into a vibrant European-style piazza in keeping with its 18th-century Italian architecture. © Richard Moran

The St Fagans announcement was described by HLF Chair, Dame Jenny Abramsky, as a “fitting” St David’s Day tribute to a site which she described as being “pivotal in shaping Welsh cultural identity.”

In Halifax the Piece Hall has received initial support for a £7m HLF bid, including £239,700 in development funding. Each year, over one million people walk through the Grade I listed Hall’s open courtyard which was originally designed as a place for cloth manufacturers to trade ‘pieces’.

Calderdale Council hopes to transform the currently underused space into a vibrant European-style piazza in keeping with the Hall’s 18th-century Italian architecture. A space will also be created to explain the important role the Hall has played in Yorkshire’s history.

a photo of an old appplemac personal computer

A new Science Museum gallery will highlight revolutions in digital communications. © SSPL

London’s Science Museum is celebrating initial support for a £6.34m HLF bid, including £346,200 of development funding for two of its new Treasure Galleries. One will focus on the groundbreaking achievements of scientists and the other will highlight revolutions in digital communications.

The two galleries form part of a wider £100m master plan to reinvigorate a significant part of the Museum’s total public gallery space.

“These three major projects highlight the special role heritage can play in bringing people together and recognise the importance of creating wonderful places for learning and recreation,” added Abramsky.

More on the venues and organisations we've mentioned: