Iconic Edinburgh venue to benefit from £240,000 recovery funding

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AN ICONIC Edinburgh Venue, is set to benefit from £240,000 of COVID-19 recovery funding.

The Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh will receive the  funding which aims to help it reopen its doors safely to the public.

Further funding, worth over £1.9m has also been announced to over 40 organisations across Scotland to help with the recovery of Scotland’s historic environment sector.

The Queen's Hall - Clerk Street Panorama - Business News Scotland
(Image supplied) The Queen’s Hall

Historic Environment Scotland (HES) has announced funding in total of £1,916,238 to multiple  organisations across the country.

The funding, set up last October aims to assist with internal adaptions to facilitate social distancing and make the historic theatre safe for visitors when it is able to re-open.

The first funding stream stream  the Reopening Historic Buildings and Sites stream,  offers support to help sites reopen to the public including repairs and PPE equipment and adaptions to facilitate social distancing.

£240,000 from this stream has been awarded to the A-listed Queen’s Hall in Edinburgh.

Queen's Hall interior - Business News ScotlandThe Historic Environment Recovery Fund is administered by HES on behalf of the Scottish Government.
(Image supplied) Queen’s Hall in Newington, Edinburgh

Chair of The Queen’s Hall Board of Trustees, Nigel Griffiths says, “Alongside much-needed support for loss of income from Creative Scotland, and the Job Retention Scheme allowing us to pay staff, this funding means that The Queen’s Hall can reopen for musicians when restrictions allow, with facilities audiences expect in a venue in the 21st century.

“We have played an important role in live music in Edinburgh for over forty years and will continue to provide a much needed and beloved home for Scottish and international artists to showcase their talent.

“We are grateful to Historic Environment Scotland for their generous support of our vision for the future of The Queen’s Hall.”

The A-listed Cockenzie House and Gardens in East Lothian has also been awarded £12,112 to cover repairs which will ensure continued public access to the building.

£17,625 has also been awarded to Duart Castle Partnership to assist with works at the 13th century Duart Castle on the Isle of Mull as they start to plan for the next visitor season.

Meanwhile, £73,743 has been awarded to Shetland Amenity Trust for works to the A-listed Sumburgh Head Lighthouse on Shetland.

The funding will be used to address building maintenance as a result of winter storm damage, install COVID adaptions and develop a new business plan.

The Trust says it will also deliver a community art project and video to promote the site and re-engage with the local community.

The second stream of funding announced is: “The Sector Resilience and Recovery Stream.”

The funding aims to help organisations to protect jobs or skills training posts, as well as assist with activities to help them adapt to the ongoing impacts of COVID-19.

Organisations which HES is supporting under this stream include The Scottish Lime Centre, based in Fife.

£25,000 has been awarded to upgrade The Scottish Lime Centre’s website, to help improve their online presence and develop four training videos for traditional building skills.

The Strathspey Railway Company, has also  been awarded £57,700.

The funding is said to safeguard the development of traditional skills including three engineering apprenticeships as well as PPE equipment to allow the museum to safely re-open.

In addition, £39,575 has been awarded to the Friends of Dundonald Castle.

Alex Paterson, Chief Executive at HES, said: “The historic environment sector provides countless benefits to local communities – including providing jobs and generating tourism spend – and it is vital that we support these organisations and ensure their important work can continue as we face the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and seek to harness opportunities ahead.”

Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: “I am pleased that a wide range of projects will benefit from Scottish Government funding as part of the Historic Environment Recovery Fund.

The support delivered through this fund will safeguard our shared heritage for future generations, protect jobs and help to strengthen Scotland’s wider economic recovery.”

A full list of the institutions awarded the grants can be found on HES’s website