Major grant will help promote South Pennines as the 'Place to Be' thanks to National Lottery players

Posted: 22.08.18

Lottery funded logo

Efforts to create a South Pennines Regional Park moved a step closer today with the award of a £183,500 grant to Pennine Prospects, the area’s regeneration agency.

Backing from the Heritage Lottery Fund’s (HLF) Resilient Heritage Programme scheme will last 18 months and will be used to improve sustainable management and build capacity in what would become the UK’s first designated park of its kind.

Pennine Prospects Chief Executive, Helen Noble explained:

“This National Lottery support, with partnership funding of £11,000, will build on our enviable track record of collaborative partnerships and support Pennine Prospects sustainable growth to become more resilient and secure sustainable resources and investments. We want to nurture a vibrant socially purposed South Pennines Regional Park – a people’s park for the 21st century.”

The South Pennines embraces parts of Yorkshire, Lancashire and Great Manchester – a land of steep-sided valleys, heather moorland, distinctive market towns, canals, rivers and reservoirs. Often described as ‘spectacular’, ‘breath taking’ and ‘dramatic’ it has inspired artists and writers over the centuries, from the Bronte’s to Angela Smyth.

The region is also home to internationally important wildlife species and includes a significant percentage of the UK’s blanket bog resource.

Despite all this it is the only upland landscape in England not to have statutory protection.

The funding will enable Pennine Prospects to recast itself as an innovative, dynamic and enterprising organisation that brokers and coordinates resources, partners, organisations and people to realise the vision for a South Pennines Regional Park. Specifically it will enable the organisation to:

  • Undertake a governance review and develop a new organisational structure.
  • Develop communication and advocacy strategies and plans.
  • Undertake a fundamental review of financial management systems.
  • Produce a new five-year sustainable delivery/business plan and to develop a framework through the business plan to progress a 10 year management plan.
  • Train directors/staff/volunteers in transition/change management, risk management, communications, partnerships, collaboration and management systems.
  • Helen Noble continued: “It is fantastic news to secure the long-term sustainable future and viability of the organisation. Distinctive landscapes such as the South Pennines are facing many management, development and funding pressures.

    “With the support from HLF and our partners, we want to co-create, demonstrate and give confidence on how investment can be aligned to deliver environmental, social and economic benefits. We aim to be the ‘go-to’ organisation, exploring innovative ways to champion the importance of our uplands to deliver clean water, carbon capture, flood mitigation and rich habitats. Investment in our local economies to create inclusive growth and local distinctiveness are also key aims, plus better access for everyone to our wonderful open spaces.”

    Pam Warhurst, CBE, and Chair of Pennine Prospects added: “The South Pennines is an incredibly important landscape. To have support from HLF to build a fit for purpose governance structure for our South Pennine Regional Park is a game changer for our countryside and the people who live here.”

    Set up in 2005, Pennine Prospects is a multi-sectoral partnership that promotes, protects and enhances the built, cultural and natural heritage of the South Pennines. Since then, it has secured over £10m investment and has delivered a wide range of projects to care for the heritage and enhance access and the appreciation of the landscape.

    For more information please contact Helen Noble on 01422 264 686 or at

    Lottery funded


    Heritage Lottery Fund

    Thanks to National Lottery players, we invest money to help people across the UK explore, enjoy and protect the heritage they care about – from the archaeology under our feet to the historic parks and buildings we love, from precious memories and collections to rare wildlife.

    Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram and use #HLFsupported.

    Pennine Prospects

  • Pennine Prospects was set up in 2005 as a champion for the South Pennines. It is a unique rural regeneration company that aims to promote, protect and enhance the built, natural and cultural heritage of the area.
  • It is at the heart of the sustainable development of the South Pennines, working with local authorities, government agencies, businesses, voluntary organisations and the local community to manage and enhance the area’s heritage assets so that they contribute to the social, economic and environmental wellbeing of the South Pennines.
  • Pennine Prospects is a well-established cross-sector partnership bringing together local authorities: Bradford, Burnley, Calderdale, Kirklees, Oldham, Rochdale and Rossendale with Natural England; major landowners such as United Utilities, Yorkshire Water and the National Trust and organisations from the private and voluntary sectors.
  • Pennine Prospects is the trading name of the Southern Pennines Rural Regeneration Company (Company No. 5432174). For more information please visit:
  • The South Pennines

  • The South Pennines form part of the Pennine ridge of hills, lying between the Peak District and Yorkshire Dales national parks. The landscape contains sweeping moorlands, pastures enclosed by dry stone walls and gritstone settlements contained in narrow valleys. The moorlands support rare species of bird such as merlin, short-eared owl and twite.
  • It has extensive areas of open access land and a dense network of rights of way, easily accessible from the conurbations of Greater Manchester, West Yorkshire and Lancashire. This dramatic landscape has inspired many including Ted Hughes and the Brontës.
  • More information about the South Pennines can be found in Natural England’s National Character Area profile at:

    N.C.A Profile: 36 Southern Pennines (NE323)