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12 December 2005
Grant to bring Eden Neolithic heritage to life

Eden District Council's Penrith Museum (England) is celebrating news that they have been awarded over 24,000 from the Local Heritage Initiative, a scheme run by the Countryside Agency on behalf of the Heritage Lottery Fund and Nationwide Building Society.
     The funding will allow the Museum to run a series of events during 2006 aimed at broadening awareness of, and accessibility to, prehistoric heritage in the Vale of Eden. This area is a major focus for Neolithic and Bronze Age monuments, including stone circles, henges, burial cairns and rock art sites. The project aims to forge new interest in these monuments that have survived for over four thousand years.
     Working with local communities is an important part of the project and 'Living Among the Monuments' will facilitate a unique opportunity for local people to interact with their prehistoric heritage. There will be a season of educational events and experiences centred on an interpretive exhibition that will run from 14 April - 31 October 2006. In addition the Museum will organise a major field-walking survey, publish the results and hold two 'finds' workshops to facilitate access to any finds. There will be guided walks to key prehistoric sites and a free informative booklet providing an overview of heritage information and places to visit. Teachers packs will be distributed to all Eden primary schools and the Museum will run a series of schools workshops. Together these events will enable the public to become directly involved with the interpretation of their prehistoric past on an unprecedented level, from the act of discovery through to publication.
     The Curators are particularly keen to encourage community participation in the field-walking survey and volunteers are invited to contact the Museum for further information. Gillian Woodcock, the Countryside Agency's Local Heritage Initiative representative in the North West said : "We would be pleased to see more The Local Heritage Initiative projects coming forward from Cumbria."
     The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) is the main funder of the LHI scheme. Stephen Boyce, Deputy Director of Operations at HLF, said: "We know that people are passionate about their local heritage. LHI is a very special funding programme which enables smaller community groups to come up with innovative and imaginative projects to celebrate their diverse local heritage. Further details can be found on the LHI website: www.lhi.org.uk or by contacting Gillian Woodcock on 01768 895931.

Source: Eden District Council (5 December 2005)

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