Kicking the Dust

The future of the Scotland’s historic collections will be shaped by young people thanks to National Lottery funding of £776,000 for a new project being led by National Museums Scotland.

Scotland’s national youth information and citizenship charity, Young Scot is supporting the National Museums Scotland’s project through the Young Scot co-design service, alongside Project Scotland.

As creators, decision-makers and trainers, young people will be devising and testing fresh approaches to exploring the country’s incredible heritage collections so that their peers are inspired to join in.

Whether through stories, crafts, dance or social history, exploring heritage provides a unique route to intercultural understanding. With young people at the helm new events, interpretation and technological innovation will make those messages relevant to today.

As well as the National Museums Scotland project, £868,600 has also been awarded to the British Council for a project with Glasgow City Council.

The money has been awarded through HLF’s new Kick the Dust programme, HLF’s pioneering new grant programme distributing £10m from the National Lottery to youth organisations across the UK. At its core is a group of young Heritage Ambassadors, who are on a mission to ‘stir up heritage’, and have helped advise on how the money should be allocated.

HLF’s Heritage Ambassadors played a major part in allocating the grants. The 17 young people aged 16-25, recruited from across the UK to work with HLF on making heritage more inclusive for people of their age group, advised HLF’s decision panel on the projects they found to be most useful and appealing.

Eleanor Styles, Heritage Ambassador from Edinburgh, said: “It has been a brilliant experience learning how grants are awarded, and helping HLF to allocate £10m to projects involving more young people in heritage. I’m thrilled that two Scottish projects have won funding, as we found National Museums Scotland’s and British Council’s plans to involve young people in both Scottish and wider cultural heritage especially appealing. Making heritage easier to participate in for more people my age is very important to me, and I’m looking forward to seeing how the projects progress in the future particularly as Scotland celebrates the Year of Young People next year.”

Ruth Gill, Director of Public Programmes at National Museums Scotland said: “We are absolutely delighted to receive such generous support from the Heritage Lottery Fund for this project. Kick the Dust will enable us to engage young people across Scotland with their heritage. We are delighted to be working with and learning from the expertise of our partners, Young Scot and Project Scotland, and other specialist agencies. I am hugely excited about the possibilities for this project both for our young participants and for the future of our heritage and national collections”.

Louise Macdonald, Chief Executive of Young Scot said, “Scotland’s heritage is a deep and wonderful subject that every generation interprets for themselves. This will be a fascinating project and we can’t wait to start working with young people, the National Museums of Scotland and Project Scotland to get a contemporary take on Scotland’s national collections.”