View of harbour at Hartlepool
View of harbour at Hartlepool © Cornwall Archaeological Unit
View of harbour at Hartlepool © Cornwall Archaeological Unit

Heritage Protection Commissions and Capacity Building

We want to work with others to support Historic England’s purpose of improving people’s lives by championing and protecting the historic environment.

We offer funding for strategic research that will help us to know what our historic environment comprises, which aspects of it are the most significant, and what innovations in science and approach will help us to look after it for the future. We want to fund projects which develop sector capacity, capability and resilience, and/or help more diverse people engage with heritage and the historic environment.

Projects must be rooted in, and about, place to reflect Historic England’s statutory remit.

Heritage Protection Commissions and Capacity Building (HPC)  funds projects that directly address the priorities outlined in Historic England's Corporate Plan and where relevant address  our current Research Agenda, which sets out our broad research themes.  

Please note that we assess all the projects that we fund on how they will achieve outcomes that deliver public value. Historic England has adopted a public value framework (PVF) to provide assurance to its stakeholders, including the taxpaying public, that it invests public money in ways that optimise value. Please refer to our public value framework page for more information.

Who can apply?

All organisations including local authorities, universities, charitable trusts and limited companies are eligible for funding.

Individuals are also eligible provided they can demonstrate that they are registered as self-employed.

How and when to apply

There are three ways to apply for funding, please follow the links for information on how to apply.

1. We run an Open Proposals Programme which means that applications can be submitted at any time.

2. We also issue Calls for Proposals where the subject for grant aid is specifically defined but where your own creativity and expertise shape your application. New calls may be added throughout the year, so please check regularly.

3. We also advertise Tender Opportunities with very specific project requirements. New opportunities may be offered throughout the year, so please check regularly.

Help and advice is available from the Heritage Protection Commissions Team.

After you apply

We run a two-stage application process for Open Proposals and Calls for Proposals.

A short Project Proposal should be submitted to the Heritage Protection Commissions team. We test all proposals to check whether they meet the priorities in the relevant part of our Corporate Plan. For those that do, we then assess:

  • the methods proposed
  • the expertise and experience of the proposed team
  • the amount of grant needed
  • the impact the project will have on its intended users

We aim to tell you our decision on your Project Proposal within two months of receipt.

If successful, you may be asked either to provide some further clarification in a revised Project Proposal, or you may be invited to develop a detailed Project Design (for which we will provide funding). 

The development of a Project Design and its subsequent appraisal can take several months for a large and complex project, so please bear this in mind.

For Tender Opportunities, we will issue a Brief, and your response will be in the form of a Project Design. We do not fund Project Designs produced in response to Tenders.

Heritage Protection Commissions