Big Lottery Fund
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Lottery first for Ardrossan castle carnival

The people of Ardrossan have recently been celebrating a Big Lottery Fund grant of £53,304 that will transport them back in time to enjoy a carnival with a difference.

On Saturday the 18 June 2016, Ardrossan Castle will come alive with the sights and sounds of medieval Scotland, a special celebration re-connecting people with their local heritage. The project, run by Ardrossan Castle Heritage Society, is the first in Scotland to receive funding from the Big Lottery Fund’s latest Our Place initiative, which supports local people to decide for themselves where Lottery money should be spent.

Welcoming the award Dr Amanda Simpson of the Ardrossan Castle Heritage Society, said: “We are utterly thrilled to be the first recipient in Scotland of the latest Our Place funding from the Big Lottery Fund. This incredible support will help us host the Carnival for at least three years. Ardrossan Castle Carnival 2016 will commemorate the recently uncovered story of the Privy Council of Scotland meeting in the castle, on June 18, 1546, to broker peace between two warring landowners. The meeting was presided over by Lord James Hamilton, the 2nd Lord of Arran and Regent for the 4-year old infant Mary, Queen of Scots. We believe this offers a tantalising clue to the historical significance of Ardrossan Castle in mid-16th century Scotland.”

She continued: “ACHS hope this event will help stimulate Ardrossan and the Castle as a place of local pride and a place to visit; for the local community as well as further afield. It is a fantastic opportunity to work with local community groups and businesses to host this amazing event together. Saturday 18 June - Save the date!”

Taking place on Castle Hill, the free-to-attend carnival will transport visitors back to medieval Scotland with archery, birds of prey, jesters, a gun-firing display and lots, lots more. Costumed tour guides and local performers will show visitors around the castle and church ruins sharing the unique Medieval and Bronze Age history of the site.

Local groups and volunteers will play an important role in the success of the carnival. One of those groups taking part is Les Amis d'Onno. Sue Martin from the group said: “All the team at Jousting Scotland are pleased to be a part of the Ardrossan Castle Carnival! It is fantastic to bring some real old fashioned entertainment into the 21st century!”

Announcing the first grant from the latest Our Place initiative, Big Lottery Fund Scotland Chair, Maureen McGinn, said: “I am delighted that families and individuals living in Ardrossan will be the first to benefit from Our Place. Through this initiative, the local community was empowered to decide for themselves their local priorities for Lottery funding. The Ardrossan Castle Carnival is a wonderful example of people using Lottery money to learn more about their local history, encourage volunteering, share skills and knowledge and above all have fun spending time with others in their community.”

For the latest details on the Ardrossan Castle Carnival 2016 follow Ardrossan Castle Heritage Society on Facebook to different website

Our Place is currently working with seven communities across Scotland, one of which is Ardrossan (Central and North East) in North Ayrshire. It supports communities to develop a common vision of how their own area could develop and grow, and how Lottery Funding could support these changes.

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Big Lottery Fund Press Office contact:
Telephone: 0141 242 1458
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Notes to Editors:

  • The Big Lottery Fund supports the aspirations of people who want to make life better for their communities across the UK. We are responsible for giving out 40% of the money raised by the National Lottery and invest over £650 million a year in projects big and small in health, education, environment and charitable purposes.
  • The Big Lottery Fund Scotland is focussed on helping people and communities most in need throughout Scotland through its five-year £250m funding scheme as well as small grants schemes Awards for All and Investing in Ideas.
  • Since March 2007 Big Lottery Fund Scotland has taken devolved decisions on Lottery spending, the Committee, led by Chair, Maureen McGinn plays a strategic role in the future direction of the Fund in Scotland.
  • Since June 2004 we have awarded over £8 billion to projects across the UK that change the lives of millions of people. Every year we fund 13,000 small local projects tackling big social problems like poor mental health and homelessness.
  • Since the National Lottery began in 1994, £34 billion has been raised and more than 450,000 grants awarded.


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