The Vindolanda Charitable Trust receives lifeline grant from Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund.

Released 17th October 2020

The Vindolanda Trust has been awarded £250,000 as part of the Government’s £1.57 billion Culture Recovery Fund (CRF) to help face the challenges of the coronavirus pandemic and to ensure they have a sustainable future, the Culture Secretary has announced today.

The Vindolanda Trust is one of 588 cultural and creative organisations across the country receiving urgently needed support – with £76 million of investment announced today. This follows £257 million awarded earlier in the week to 1,385 organisations, also from the Culture Recovery Fund grants programme being administered by Arts Council England on behalf of the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport. Further rounds of funding in the cultural and heritage sector are due to be announced over the coming weeks.

The £250,000 grant from this fund will secure the financial viability for the Vindolanda Trust, contributing c 66% towards critical recovery factors, and allow the Trust to remain partially open during the traditionally low-income October to March ‘shoulder’ season. The Trust is confident that with this Grant the shoulder season can be survived without jeopardising the reserves needed for salaries, fixed operational and property maintenance costs, and a successful recovery can be achieved without further staff redundancies and place the Trust in a good position for the continuation of its aims and objectives.

Culture Secretary Oliver Dowden said:

“This is more vital funding to protect cultural gems across the country, save jobs and prepare the arts to bounce back. Through Arts Council England we are delivering the biggest ever investment in the arts in record time. Hundreds of millions of pounds are already making their way to thousands of organisations.

“These awards build on our commitment to be here for culture in every part of the country.”

 Chair, Arts Council England, Sir Nicholas Serota, said:

“Culture is an essential part of life across the country, helping to support people’s wellbeing through creativity and self-expression, bringing communities together, and fuelling our world class creative industries. 

 “This latest set of awards from the Culture Recovery Fund builds on those announced recently and will help hundreds of organisations to survive the next few months, ensuring that the cultural sector can bounce back after the crisis.  We will continue doing everything we can to support artists and cultural and creative organisations, with further funding to be announced in the coming weeks.”

Dr Andrew Birley, The Trust's CEO, said: "The Vindolanda Trust is extremely grateful and delighted that it has been successful in its application to the Culture Recovery Fund through the Arts Council England. This substantial grant of £250,000 will have a significant impact to our ability to survive through the winter of 2020 and push positively ahead into 2021.  It protects jobs, skills and expertise, the Designated Museum Collection and the ancient site. Importantly, by supporting the Vindolanda Trust this award also helps the surrounding cultural and tourism ecosystem in the central part of Hadrian's Wall."

Trust Patron, Robson Green said "This really is wonderful and extraordinary news. This money will secure financial viability, covering the core costs over the long and uncertain winter. The Vindolanda Trust reminds us all that knowing our origins not only teaches us about the past and the world we live in today but more importantly it allows us learn so much about ourselves".



notes to editors:

The Vindolanda Trust is an independent archaeological charitable trust, founded in 1970. The Vindolanda Trust does not receive any annual funding and relies on the visitors to both Roman Vindolanda and the Roman Army Museum to fund its archaeological, conservation and education work.  Roman Vindolanda is regarded as the most exciting archaeological site in Europe with its wealth of archaeological remains and ongoing excavations. Vindolanda is home to the world famous Vindolanda Writing Tablets, voted as Britain’s top archaeological treasure by the British Museum, these thin hand written wooden notes have revealed an astonishing amount of first-hand information from the people who lived at this site 2000 years ago. In May 2016 the Vindolanda was awarded Designated status by the Arts Council England recognising the collection as being of national significance.

Arts Council England is the national development agency for creativity and culture. We have set out our strategic vision in Let’s Create that by 2030 we want England to be a country in which the creativity of each of us is valued and given the chance to flourish and where everyone of us has access to a remarkable range of high quality cultural experiences. We invest public money from Government and The National Lottery to help support the sector and to deliver this vision.


Following the Covid-19 crisis, the Arts Council developed a £160 million Emergency Response Package, with nearly 90% coming from the National Lottery, for organisations and individuals needing support. We are also one of several bodies administering the Government’s Culture Recovery Fund and unprecedented support package of £1.57 billion for the culture and heritage sector. Find out more at