Preet Kaur Gill, MP for Birmingham Edgbaston has welcomed the news that Birmingham Botanical Gardens has received a development grant of £590,814, with the option of securing a further £4,409,186.
The initial £590,814 funding will help develop plans for the Botanical Gardens project, ‘Growing our Green Heritage’. As the project progresses, the Botanical Gardens will have the chance to secure an additional funding amount of £4,409,186.
‘Growing our Green Heritage’ aims to restore the garden’s historic glasshouse estate, alongside additional visitor and community recourses, in order to create place of horticultural excellence and outstanding green space.
Preet Kaur Gill MP said, “I am delighted to see this investment coming to such a wonderfully important heritage asset, the Birmingham Botanical Gardens. The difference this money will make to the gardens, where the historic glasshouse estate has become extremely fragile, and to the wider city of Birmingham cannot be understated.
"For this reason, I was more than happy to work with and write a letter of support for the bid. I am extremely grateful to everyone at the Botanical Gardens, and I would like to thank everyone I’ve had the pleasure to meet and work with. It is their passion and enthusiasm to preserve our gardens that shines through this bid.
“The £5 million that has been awarded is transformational and I look forward to seeing how communities will be able to continue their longstanding 200-year relationship with the gardens as part of the engagement work this funding will support. I firmly believe that there has not been a more important time for our communities to engage more with plants, with nature, with green space, and to better understand environmental issues.”
Sue Beardsmore, Chair of Trustees at Birmingham Botanical Gardens said, “Our uniquely biodiverse natural environment is one of the UK’s most significant historic Botanic Gardens and part of Birmingham’s richly diverse cultural history and way of life. This safe, peaceful space is part of the green heart of Birmingham and a hugely treasured place to the city and its communities.
“The historic glasshouse estate is at risk. It needs urgent extensive repairs to continue to provide the right environment for our important living plant collection.
“Support from The National Lottery Heritage Fund will mean that we can preserve this historic estate and iconic glasshouses for future generations. A place of sanctuary, learning and inspiration, bringing people and plants together for another 200 years.
“We know that a meaningful relationship with nature has significant benefits for health and well-being and we are immensely grateful to the Fund for this unique opportunity to restore an important part of Birmingham’s heritage, champion biodiversity and the environment, and reconnect people with nature.”
This important funding into the West Midlands comes after a successful year for the region, which included Coventry City of Culture, itself a recipient of £3 million funding from the Heritage Fund, and the Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games, of which the Birmingham 2022 Festival also received £3 million in Heritage Fund support, all made possible thanks to National Lottery players.