Heritage lottery blues

August 25, 2000

Kingston had a similar experience to Durham University with the Heritage Lottery Fund ("Lottery rejects castle repairs", THES, August 11).

Last January, I applied for Pounds 78,000 to support the work of the Kingston local history project. The project met the criteria set by the HLF for a revenue grant, but by early April the application was rejected (without a visit) on the grounds that "support of education institutions for services, which are part of their core business are a low priority for funding" and because our project was already underway.

Is the latter a reasonable ground for rejection? Our application made it clear we were proceeding in stages, and, having successfully completed stage 1 and demonstrated that we could deliver stated outcomes, we were looking for funding for stages 2 and 3.

If there is "discrimination against universities", we should be told so.

Christopher French

Director, centre for local history studies, Kingston University

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