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Restorer Mark Roberts with Hugh Douglas Hamilton’s portrait of Lord St.Helens following restoration and now back on display at Tissington Hall in Derbyshire- funded by HCT
Herbert Thompson junior school’s gardening project at Tredegar House, © Gateway Gardens Trust.  Opening All the Gates, a legacy project of the GGT is currently being funded by the HCT
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The Heritage Conservation Trust

The HCT supports the conservation of works of art at historic houses open to the public as well as education, access and research initiatives in and about these special places.

Britain’s historic houses, castles and gardens are amongst the most visited and best loved places in the UK; they are an integral part of our national life, conserving cultural treasures in their historical setting and creating inspiring places for learning. Public interest in heritage is very strong and is continuing to grow, especially where houses remain as family homes and are alive and lived-in. The Trust may be able to help where support cannot otherwise be found to help conserve and make accessible these vital parts of our unique heritage.

The Heritage Conservation Trust (HCT) was created as a charity in 1990 on the initiative of historic house owners, to support the restoration of works of art and also to assist educational initiatives and research related to the contents of historic buildings. During its life so far, the Trust has focused on the first of these objects, granting £280,000 of aid to assist the restoration of paintings and drawings in over 50 historic houses open to the public.

Within the last year the HCT has expanded its activities to support access and educational initiatives in historic houses and gardens and to help research projects linked to the conservation of the historic or artistic contents of houses, alongside its continuing work to assist restoration of works of art.

The HCT’s own resources have been limited as a result of low interest rates.  However, generous donations, from individuals and  regional heritage groups, have continued to enhance its activities and the Trust is dependent on these for its future development.

The HCT financial year runs from April to March. During the financial year the HCT made grants totalling £16,698. Since the beginning of the current financial year a further £16,750 had also been approved.
At its meeting on 20 November 2013, the HCT awarded £3,000 to Great Dixter House, Garden & Nurseries to contribute towards an ongoing education project.
In July 2013, the HCT gave a grant of £1,900 towards a combined education and restoration project at Chawton House Library in Hampshire.