We have received £49,800 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund to support the essential operating costs of Wheal Martyn in the short term, which will ensure we can continue to protect Cornwall’s china clay heritage and provide opportunities to inspire and educate our communities beyond the current crisis.

Since the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown began, we had to close our doors, which meant no income from visitor admissions or the café and shop, all of which we rely upon as a charity to support our work. The funding will help to support unavoidable costs during the closure period and retain our employees to plan and prepare for the future. Wheal Martyn is now open, providing a sanctuary in a safe and historic setting.

During lockdown, we invited the local community to share images of the clay landscape via social media, to celebrate the place they live. Many of these will be shown in an outdoor exhibition during August.

Colin Vallance, Director at Wheal Martyn, said: “Thanks to the National Lottery and its players, we can now confidently plan for the future and work to ensure Wheal Martyn remains a focal point at the heart of Cornwall’s clay area - for our community, visitors and volunteers to enjoy, discover and share the heritage of the industry that shaped the place we live, whilst gaining from the wellbeing benefits of spending time in an inspiring historic setting. We’re grateful that The National Lottery Heritage Fund is supporting us at this crucial time – it’s a lifeline to us and others who are passionate about sustaining heritage for the benefit of all.”

The funding, made possible by National Lottery players, was awarded through The National Lottery Heritage Fund’s Heritage Emergency Fund. £50 million has been made available to provide emergency funding for those most in need across the heritage sector.

The UK-wide fund will address both immediate emergency actions and help organisations to start thinking about recovery.

Ros Kerslake, Chief Executive of The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “Heritage has an essential role to play in making communities better places to live, supporting economic regeneration and benefiting our personal wellbeing. All of these things are going to be even more important as we emerge from this current crisis.

Thanks to money raised by National Lottery players we are pleased to be able to lend our support to organisations such as Wheal Martyn during this uncertain time.”

Like Wheal Martyn, other charities and organisations across the UK that have been affected by the unprecedented impact of the coronavirus outbreak are being given access to a comprehensive package of support of up to £600 million of repurposed money from The National Lottery. This money is supporting some of the most vulnerable people in our communities and span the arts, community, charity, heritage, education, environment and sports sectors.

Thanks to National Lottery players, £30 million is raised every week for good causes, including heritage of local and national importance. By playing The National Lottery, people up and down the country are making an amazing contribution to the nationwide-response to combatting the impact of COVID-19 on local communities across the UK.

The National Lottery Heritage Fund is currently open to applications for its Heritage Emergency Fund. To find out more click here.

To find out more about the National Lottery Good Causes click here.