Historic England has announced funding for more than 50 creative projects to highlight working-class stories from “overlooked” parts of the country.
Fifty-seven projects will benefit from £774,000 split into grants ranging from £6,000 to £25,000, including stories from West Yorkshire’s boxing clubs, Leicester’s hidden nightclub scene and Deptford’s 19th-century slaughter houses.
Historic England said the money will further the “collective understanding of the past” and “address the imbalance over which histories are remembered”.
The projects will take various forms, with some producing films, online articles, artwork and oral history recordings and others hosting celebratory events and exhibitions.
After an open call for applications in February, the 57 projects were selected from more than 500 proposals.
Among the criteria for successful bids were projects that provided volunteering opportunities for young people or those facing loneliness and isolation, and projects that contributed positively to participants’ wellbeing.
Duncan Wilson, chief executive of Historic England, said: “I’m excited to see the wide range of creative approaches and subjects proposed for Everyday Heritage Grants: Celebrating Working Class Histories.
“These community-led projects demonstrate that heritage is all around us and accessible to everyone. They will highlight that wherever people live they are surrounded by historic buildings, landscapes and streets, industrial and coastal heritage that can help bring communities together.”
Heritage minister Nigel Huddleston said: “This inclusive and accessible project clearly demonstrates that heritage belongs to all of us.
“This is a fantastic initiative that will help communities from across England engage with the working-class heritage in their area in new and exciting ways and see these untold stories being put into the spotlight.”
Other projects to benefit include:
– Peel Street Mill in Heywood, Greater Manchester.
– Easington Colliery in Co Durham.
– Working-class communities in Bodmin, Cornwall.
– Disabled people at Ripon Workhouse in North Yorkshire.
– The history of the Dunston Staiths, a coal drop for ships in Gateshead.
– The stories of the colliers, iron workers and traveller communities who used tin chapels in the Forest of Dean.