The UK Shared Prosperity Fund (UKSPF) has launched two new grant schemes aimed at promoting and enhancing the county's cultural and heritage sites, as well as bolstering creative programming across the region.

This announcement follows the launch of the Events and Festivals grant scheme in May. The latest funding initiatives are part of a substantial £7.3 million allocation for Herefordshire Council from the UKSPF, earmarked to boost local pride, improve living conditions, and support the growth of businesses and skills in the county until March 2025.

The first of the two schemes, the Cultural Development Grant, is geared towards fortifying the operation of existing cultural, historical and heritage institutions in the region. The scheme will allow these organisations to enrich their visitor offerings and launch additional programmes that are intrinsically linked to their sites or assets.

The Cultural Programming Grant Scheme plans to bolster the county's overall delivery of local arts, culture, heritage and creative activities. This scheme hopes to stimulate community engagement and inject vitality into local communities through vibrant creative programmes.

Applications for the first round of both cultural grants schemes are now open and must be submitted by 5pm on the of August 3. The Herefordshire Sustainable Growth Strategy Board (HSGSB) will serve as the partnership/advisory board for the UKSPF within Herefordshire, overseeing the investment plan's development and monitoring its delivery.

The board comprises representatives from diverse sectors including business, public services, voluntary organisations, and community groups. It also includes chairs of other local stakeholder groups such as the Herefordshire Business Board, Skills Board and Climate and Nature Partnership.

For more information and details on how to apply, interested parties can refer to the council's website.