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Sumburgh Head secures support from Historic Environment Scotland

Published: 26 January 2021

Shetland Amenity Trust is pleased to announce that is has secured funding for Sumburgh Head Lighthouse from Historic Environment Scotland as part of its recovery fund to support Scotland’s historic environment sector from the impacts of Covid-19.

Sumburgh Head Lighthouse, Visitor Centre and Nature Reserve


The amount of £73,743 has been awarded to Shetland Amenity Trust, which manages the Five Star Visitor Attraction, and will be used to address building maintenance as a result of storm damage, install COVID adaptations and develop a new business plan to re-engage the Shetland public and any tourist market to the site.

Davy Cooper, Head of Development at Shetland Amenity Trust said: “We are grateful for this support which has come at a significant time for us. The care of the site at Sumburgh Head is entirely funded by ticket sales and donations, and receives no public funding. Covid-19 restrictions meant that Sumburgh Head was only able to open for a limited period of time last year. We are hopeful that the restrictions may be lifted to a point that the site can reopen for a full summer season in 2021. In order to do so we will need to re-engage with the public. This project, which includes essential repairs and the enhancement of Covid-19 adaptations, proposes the development of a summer activities programme which reflects the whole range of natural and cultural heritage on the site, with a particular focus on the 200th anniversary of the first lighting of Sumburgh Head Lighthouse.”

Alex Paterson, Chief Executive at HES, said: “From museums in the Highlands to historic venues and buildings in central Scotland and the Borders, we are pleased to support a diverse range of projects the length and breadth of Scotland as part of the Historic Environment Recovery Fund. By helping to protect jobs, reopen historic sites and maintaining investment in traditional skills training and apprenticeships, we hope to support the wider recovery of the sector and Scotland’s economy.

“While historic sites and visitor attractions have been impacted by the closure of sites throughout the 2020 visitor season and the loss of revenue, other organisations in the sector have also had to adapt the way in which they carry out their work, put crucial traditional skills training and educational activities on hold and look at new ways to generate income, and we hope that this funding will allow the recipients to prepare for the future.”



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