Attractions industry news

14 Jul 2017

Heritage Lottery funding secured to establish Paralympic heritage centre at Stoke Mandeville

The Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) has awarded the National Paralympic Heritage Trust £1m (US$1.3m, €1.1m) to establish a heritage centre in the UK chronicling the history of the Paralympic movement.

Paralympic sport dates back to 1948, when Dr Ludwig Guttman, director of the UK’s first specialist unit for treating spinal injuries, organised the first Stoke Mandeville Games. Guttman was a figurehead for the establishment of the Paralympic Games, which were held for the first time in Rome in 1960.

The new heritage centre will tell this story, right up to today’s modern Paralympic athletes and the recent Paralympic Games in Rio, Brazil.

The centre's exhibition will be developed by Mather & Co at the Stoke Mandeville Stadium – the National Centre for Disability Sport in the United Kingdom – in Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire. Exhibitions will include artefacts including Guttmann’s surgical box, medals from the first games and a wide range of equipment and memorabilia.

As part of the centre’s funding, its entire collection will be digitised to be preserved for future generations. The collection will also be archived, catalogued and shared to reach the widest audience possible. Additionally, a nationwide programme of regional exhibitions will also be rolled out in Norwich, Manchester, Bradford, Bath, and London to share the Paralympic story with people across the UK.

“My first recollection of Stoke Mandeville was from the 1967 National Games when as a 17-year-old I saw wheelchair basketball being played. Looking back, I recall a small area of not too attractive land sandwiched between the back of a large hospital and a railway embankment,” said Sir Philip Craven, president of the International Paralympic Committee.

“To think that this is where the unique paralympic sporting spirit was born, fuelled by the human energy of the athletes, coaches and volunteers, and to know now that this fiery furnace of positive human energy will be remembered forever makes me very happy.”

In addition to HLF funding, the Trust has also received support from the Wellcome Trust, Aylesbury Vale Community Chest, Spirit of 2012, Association of Independent Museums, Heart of Bucks/Bucks Freemasons, Transform Foundation, the Rothschild Foundation and Arts Council England.

“Sports heritage has a wide appeal to the British Public and we are enormously grateful to the Heritage Lottery Fund for their continuing support, enabling us to bring the story of Dr Guttmann and the development of the Paralympic movement to a wide range of audiences,” said Paul Mainds, chair of the National Paralympic Heritage Fund.

“While our first job is to protect the unique heritage that could so easily be lost, the real satisfaction will be to share the inspiration of the history which is literally ‘life changing’ and to help break down some of the surviving barriers.”

Over the course of the next five years, the National Paralympic Heritage Trust – made up of the British Paralympic Association, WheelPower Sport, Aylesbury Vale District Council and Buckinghamshire County Council – will continue in its fundraising effort, seeking a further £400,000 (US$518,000, €454,000) to further expand the project.

<< Back

News powered by

Google brings back Glass tech with focus on improving job productivity

Google’s Glass smart wear technology has been resurrected with job productivity in mind, two years on from the company scrapping its original consumer model. [more...]

Freeman expands sports and entertainment reach with acquisition of BaAM

Brand experience provider Freeman has announced the acquisition of creative production company BaAM, expanding its business into the sports and entertainment markets. [more...]

Strong Q1 shows increases in key visitor markets for British tourism

New figures released by VisitBritain have shown strong growth in overseas visits from markets including China, Australia, France and the US. [more...]

Exclusive: Chester Zoo MD details £100m redevelopment masterplan

Chester Zoo will develop 100 acres (405,000sq m) of its existing site into grassland and forest areas as part of a £100m (US$130.4m, €113m) development project. [more...]

Dublin's Guinness Storehouse announces €16m expansion

Ireland’s most popular visitor attraction is seeking to draw even more visitors after the Guinness Storehouse in Dublin announced €16m (US$18.5m, £14.2m) expansion plans centred around doubling the size of its Gravity Bar. [more...]

Tourism projects receive funding in latest round of VisitEngland's £40m Discover England Fund

Development of a London/Bristol tourism route, a tour of Britain’s world famous horse- racing courses, travel packages for 18-35 year olds, and an urban food and drink hub have been named as the latest projects to receive funding from VisitEngland’s £40m Discover England Fund. [more...]

In brief:

Alton Towers opens world-first CBeebies hotel @altontowers [more...]
Five in contention to be UK City of Culture 2021 #culture [more...]
HLF funding awarded for Paralympic heritage centre @ParalympicsGB @heritagelottery [more...]
Longleat eyes extended stays with hotel and waterpark plan set for approval @Longleat [more...]
New icon for @NHM_London as Dippy is replaced by giant blue whale skeleton @CassonMann [more...]
Plan launched to improve Snowdon and safeguard mountain from increased tourism [more...]
Unesco launches fundraising platform for World Heritage projects @UNESCO [more...]
.@FosterPartners @ALA_tweets @snohetta @RPBWARCHITECTS in running for London concert hall [more...]
Unesco makes 23 new additions to World Heritage list @UNESCO #41whc [more...]
More news from>>
<< Back