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Flagship Scheme - is now closed

A fond farewell to the Flagship Scheme


After 10 years of successful funding, the Flagship Scheme is now closed to new applications and will award its final year of funding at the Biffa Awards 2014, in October this year.  Two organisations will be chosen from a shortlist of projects to deliver regionally significant, unique and exciting projects within the UK, under either the Rebuilding Biodiversity or Cultural Facilities themes.   Each project will receive in the region of £150,000 - £500,000!


Over the last 10 years we have seen some amazing projects benefiting our communities and the environment, such as: the Great Fen project, which purchased and restored land to benefit species such as Lapwing and Snipe; and the restoration and reuse of one of Northern Ireland's most significant listed buildings, the 17th Century fortified Farm House, known as The White House.  We have helped to create Saltholme Wild Bird Discovery Centre, with its iconic building and cutting edge interpretive techniques that are used to provide extraordinary views of and unique insights into the wildlife of the International Nature Reserve.  Funding was also received by the National Museums at Chatham, which created a permanent maritime-themed gallery providing world-class exhibition facilities where material drawn from the two national museum's wide ranging collections is used to explore a variety of themes - trade, war, migration, exploration and science for example - evoking powerful human stories of the role our maritime past has played in shaping the Britain we know today.


From 2014 we will take a fresh approach to our funding, looking for nationally or regionally significant projects, that can deliver multi region or large scale projects across the UK.  For the past six years, in addition to the Flagship Scheme we have directed our national funding through our Partnership Scheme, project examples include: Association of Independent Museums (AIM) is managing a grant-making scheme of £1,500,000 over a three-year period that will result in the creation a network of landmark projects relating to industrial heritage; and the Million Ponds project that aimed to start the process of reversing the decline in the UK’s freshwater habitat by creating 5,000 new ponds in England and Wales including 1,000 specifically created for individual BAP species.  The Woodland Trust also received a Partnership grant for its Trees Enriching Communities project which will involve two million people planting a total of two million trees in their local areas, creating woodlands that will enhance local environments, store carbon, filter pollution, and help biodiversity.  The Biffa Award project will create 3,000 hectares of community woodlands over three years, for people and wildlife across the UK.  

Although the Partnership Scheme is not open for applications in the usual manner, we are keen to hear of any organisations that you think could deliver a multi region project, in partnership with other organisations.   As it is an invitation only scheme, the Programme Manager, Gillian French, will discuss potential project ideas with the applicant before taking it further with the Biffa Award Board. 

Examples of current Flagship projects 

Westonbirt Arboretum

The Friends of Westonbirt Arboretum in Gloucestershire have been granted almost £500,000 over two years to enhance the cultural heritage of the arboretum with a new interpretation zone and information plaza.  Westonbirt is the National Arboretum and houses a living exhibition of 16,000 trees and plants, each with its own story to tell about the site's history.  It is hoped that the new information area will provide the 350,000 annual visitors with a hugely enhanced experience, and allow them to learn more about its heritage.

Working Wetlands

Devon Wildlife Trust has been granted £500,000 over three years to help them continue their work to restore wetland areas in the north of the county.  Since 2008 the Trust has undertaken works to restore and recreate culm grassland habitats that occupied the area before the agricultural developments and neglect of the 20th Century caused 95% to disappear.  The Flagship grant will allow Devon Wildlife Trust to take their most successful and cost-effective techniques from the development phase, refine them further and apply them to a much larger area. 

Coventry Transport Museum

Coventry Transport Museum have been granted £498,240 over two years  tell the story of land speed records, set against a background of technological development and social change.  The Land Speed Records Gallery will feature audio and video information that highlights the very personal struggle it takes to bring a land speed record car to life and will incorporate the museum's two iconic land speed record cars, Thrust2 and ThrustSSC - currently the fastest car in the world!  It is also hoped that once the new Bloodhound vehicle – currently being developed – achieves a new record of 1000mph it will also be housed at the museum. 

International Centre for Life

Based in Newcastle upon Tyne, the International Centre for Life’s project  ‘You, the Scientist’ has secured £425,600 of funding to provide a permanent exhibition area where people can engage with science.  ‘You, the Scientist’ will provide a laboratory-style environment where visitors can step into the shoes of real scientists and carry out experiments for themselves. The practical activities will range from 'gateway' experiences, such as using microscopes and pipettes, to structured investigations where visitors follow a multi-stage set of instructions to answer a specific question.  Support for these scientists of the future will be provided by a team of 'Science Explainers', who will teach formal workshops to schools, present family science shows and assist visitors in the exhibitions.