Newcastle Cathedral Wins National Lottery Support

9th May 2017

Categories: Convention Bureau latest news

Newcastle Cathedral, Church of St Nicholas, in Newcastle upon Tyne has received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) for their ‘Common Ground in Sacred Space’ development project. Newcastle Cathedral has been awarded £358,000 in a first-round pass from the HLF, the body which distributes a share of the income from the UK’s National Lottery to projects aimed at preserving and making accessible the nation's heritage.

The Anglican Cathedral’s bid was their third attempt at securing once-in-a-lifetime funding to conserve the historic fabric of Newcastle Cathedral and its churchyard. The ambitious project totals £5.8M and is aimed at re-establishing the Cathedral’s medieval role as a community hub and to embrace the needs of the people of Newcastle and the region. The Cathedral now has up to two years to submit a fully developed project proposal to compete for a firm award. If successful, a further £4.2M will be unlocked from the HLF to complete the project.

The vision is "to bring 900 years of history into the 21st century by reviving the medieval role of Newcastle Cathedral’s unique building as a distinct space for worship, events, and activities. The transformed Cathedral will be a dynamic hub for community engagement as well as a special place of prayer and spiritual discovery." In these financially-challenging times, the Cathedral also needs to be financially sustainable, so transforming the interior into a beautiful and viable events space is vital.

In particular:

  • A new Nave floor and under-floor heating will create a stunning, open, and flexible space.
  • Historic ledger stones will be protected, preserved, and their stories revealed.
  • Landscaping of the south and east churchyards will create a series of beautiful, accessible, and engaging public spaces.
  • New visitor facilities will be created in the Cathedral Hall complex.
  • New interpretation will engage visitors in the fascinating history of the Cathedral and its civic role throughout the centuries.
  • A creative programme of activities and events will engage with schools, community groups, and city-wide organisations.

The Dean of Newcastle, the Very Reverend Christopher Dalliston, said, "We’re absolutely delighted that the National Lottery has given us this support. Our project will deliver a sustainable future for Newcastle Cathedral, an incomparable and historically significant building whose full potential is gravely jeopardised by failing infrastructure."

The Very Reverend Christopher Dalliston continued, "In partnership with Newcastle’s Medieval Quarter and the wider city, we will capture the Cathedral’s historic role within the community, meeting the needs of new and diverse audiences including the vulnerable, residents, and tourists, and reclaiming its role as Common Ground in Sacred Space. This really now puts what was the medieval core of Newcastle on the map."

David Lawrence, a congregational member of Cathedral Chapter, added, "This is very welcome news for Newcastle Cathedral and an incredible boost for the heart of the medieval city. The Cathedral has been very generously supported by so many over the years, and we are extremely grateful to all those who have made initial transformative work possible. Now, with significant financial support from the HLF, Newcastle Cathedral will be able to move forward to the next level of regeneration and bring our exciting redevelopment plans to life."

Explaining the importance of the HLF support to the Cathedral, the city, and the wider community, Adrian Waddell, Operations Director at NE1 Ltd, said, "It is great news that another city centre project has attracted National Lottery funding. It is a mark of the city's architectural heritage and importance to the whole of the UK that it has been granted four major HLF grants in recent years: the Bigg Market, the Castle Keep, the Mining Institute, and now the Cathedral – all in close proximity to each other so really building on the area’s cultural importance."

Newcastle Cathedral is actively committed to engage with all stakeholders. To find out more and to get involved in the Cathedral’s Common Ground in Sacred Space development project, please register your interest by emailing: or telephoning: 0191 232 1939. Newcastle Cathedral will keep you up to date with project milestones; notify you of Engagement Days, and let you know about ways in which you can support the project, for example, through match funding and chair sponsorship.


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