National Lottery Heritage Fund Development Grant

Trust awarded £368,000 grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund to restore Chamberlain’s Highbury

The Trustees of the Chamberlain Highbury Trust are delighted to have received a grant from the National Lottery Heritage Fund, to support the Trust’s plans to restore Highbury, Joseph Chamberlain’s family home in Birmingham.

Highbury – the mansion and the gardens – needs a lot of work to restore and refurbish the estate. The Trust has made a good start, with the gardens improved thanks to significant grants obtained from Historic England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund . Now, the announcement of this new Lottery grant means that the Trustees can start planning for a programme of major improvements over the next four years.

Former Chair of the Trustees, Les Sparks, says:

We have worked as a Trust for 6 years to get to this very significant position. In that time we have demonstrated our ability to manage Highbury and deliver improvements on time and to budget. We are all thrilled that the National Lottery Heritage Fund has recognised this and entrusted us with a Development Grant.”

Obtaining funding from the National Lottery for the restoration works is a two-stage process, the first stage being this Development Grant. The Trust will receive £ 368,000. This is 59% of the total approved development work cost of £619,000 towards the Development Phase of the restoration project. The Trust has in place the 41% matched funding required to carry out the Development Phase.

Provided the Trust manages the Development Phase competently, this will open the door for a second stage Lottery grant of a more substantial sum for the Delivery Phase.

Les Sparks, has just retired from the Chair and David Kidney was appointed a Chair of Trustee following the AGM in October. David says he is excited to take on responsibility for the Trust at such a momentous time in the Trust’s development:

“I am fortunate to be taking on my role as the Trust’s Chair at just the time when we as a Trust will have the wherewithal to undertake a major restoration project at Highbury. Our ambition is to restore the estate to a sound condition and a sustainable economic future.

“But in addition, we want to welcome into Highbury modern Birmingham. We will continue to build our youth leadership programme and our engagement with our neighbouring communities such as Kings Heath, Moseley and Stirchley. We will offer opportunities for our neighbours to join us and make use of these beautiful surroundings.

We also intend to work to high standards of environmental sustainability. We want to be this generation’s custodian of a visitor attraction and working environment that Birmingham can be proud of.”  

Anne Jenkins, Director, England, Midlands & East, National Lottery Heritage Fund, said:

“We are delighted to support this project that aims to restore Joseph Chamberlain’s family home of Highbury to its former glory, whilst also adapting it for 21st century use. Funding will help The Trust develop a programme of exciting events to attract visitors, as well as create space for local, small businesses. Many thanks to National Lottery players for their help in supporting the Trust’s initiatives like the youth leadership programme, that will enable people from neighbouring communities to add their footprint to this historically important Birmingham heritage site.”

Thank you to all our volunteers and supporters who have made this possible.