World-famous Stonehenge illuminated in dedication to the unsung champions of heritage

·3-min read
The 5,000-year-old sarsen stones of Stonehenge have been illuminated with images of unsung heritage champions from across the UK, who with the help of National Lottery funding, have kept heritage accessible during the pandemic and beyond.
The 5,000-year-old sarsen stones of Stonehenge have been illuminated with images of unsung heritage champions from across the UK, who with the help of National Lottery funding, have kept heritage accessible during the pandemic and beyond.

Britain's most recognisable heritage site has been lit up with the faces of those who've gone above and beyond for their communities during the coronavirus pandemic.

The prehistoric stones of Stonehenge were illuminated to pay tribute to unsung champions of heritage across the UK - a first for the world-famous attraction.

Heritage sites across the UK are being supported by the National Lottery through the Covid-19 pandemic with some of the £30m raised each week for good causes by players.

“The illumination of Stonehenge is a tribute to key project workers and volunteers acknowledging all they have done to keep heritage accessible to all using National Lottery funding,” said TV historian Sir Tony Robinson.

“Without the hard work and tireless efforts of these people, our much-treasured heritage would be at risk more so than ever this year.

“As a nation we have a deep affinity for our treasured open spaces, historic places and our heritage. Understanding our heritage brings us closer to where we live and can bring a great deal of joy.

“Many of us have spent valuable hours enjoying our culture and heritage over the past months and these findings show what a positive impact it can have on many people’s happiness and wellbeing, especially so in such challenging times.”

New insights released today from The National Lottery, which helps fund heritage sites and projects across the UK, reveals that 72% of people say outdoor spaces have had a positive effect on their mental wellbeing during the pandemic.

And a further 62% say this period of change has made them value places of historical and local importance more than ever.

Those recognised at Stonehenge include:

James Rodliff

James Rodliff, operations manager at Stonehenge
James Rodliff, operations manager at Stonehenge

Operations manager at Stonehenge who oversees the day to day running of the world-famous site and meticulously planned the reopening of the site as well as vital online education sessions for young people.

Jade West

Jade West, from Skylark IV Recovery Trust, Scotland
Jade West, from Skylark IV Recovery Trust, Scotland

The Skylark IV Recovery Trust in Scotland runs boatbuilding and textile work restoring one of Dunkirk’s Little Ships, a fleet of boats which rescued over 600 men during the Second World War as part of one of the greatest ever rescue missions.

Luke Strachan

Luke Strachan, from Silver Saplings, Scotland
Luke Strachan, from Silver Saplings, Scotland

Silver Saplings in Scotland helps to tackle loneliness, isolation and mobility issues in vulnerable older people by using the natural environment.

William Colvin

William Colvin, from Cushenden Old Church, Northern Ireland
William Colvin, from Cushenden Old Church, Northern Ireland

From Cushenden Old Church in Northern Ireland, Colin and his team are working to save the deconsecrated church, which acts as a vital community arts and culture venue at the heart of an isolated rural village.

Uzo Iwobi

Uzo Iwobi OBE, from Race Council Cymru, Wales
Uzo Iwobi OBE, from Race Council Cymru, Wales

She founded Race Council Cymru and despite the pandemic delivered the first ever Black History Wales initiative – an ambitious year-long educational and celebratory programme of events.

Lee Turner

Lee Turner, from Penllegare Trust, Wales
Lee Turner, from Penllegare Trust, Wales

From the Penllegare Trust in Wales, Turner works towards restoring a heritage woodland, who throughout the pandemic has been running the project single handily whilst also keeping the space open for visitors during lockdown and beyond.

Susan Pitter

Susan Pitter, from Jamaica Society, Leeds
Susan Pitter, from Jamaica Society, Leeds

From the Jamaica Society, Leeds, Pitter and her team provides a voice and value to unheard and sometimes challenging stories of the Jamaican community in Leeds

Mick Byrne

Mick Byrne, from National Arboretum, Staffordshire
Mick Byrne, from National Arboretum, Staffordshire

From the National Arboretum, Staffordshire, Byrne has dedicated himself to maintaining the National centre of remembrance looking after 150 acres displaying 30,000 trees and 300 memorials to the fallen.

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