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Subject:

'Extracting the benefits' - £30m awarded to heritage & environment projects from minerals fund

From:

Alex Hunt <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

British archaeology discussion list <[log in to unmask]>

Date:

Thu, 16 Oct 2003 12:13:53 +0100

Content-Type:

text/plain

Parts/Attachments:

Parts/Attachments

text/plain (100 lines)

Below, a press release on the first 2 years of the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF) in England. You can find out about the full range of projects funded from English Heritage's portion of the fund via an online database at:

http://www.bytesparks.com/ALSFOnline/home.asp
_______________

English Heritage/ Countryside Agency/ English Nature
Press Release

16th October 2003

EXTRACTING THE BENEFITS
Aggregates Levy Fund celebrates almost 30m awarded to heritage and environment projects

Elliot Morley MP, Minister of Environment and Agri-environment was a special guest today (16 October 2003) at the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF) Milestone Event, held at the Museum of London. The event was staged to acknowledge the distribution 29.3 million of grants by English Heritage, English Nature and The Countryside Agency under the ALSF banner in under two years. These grants have helped finance ambitious environment, heritage and access projects across the country. 

The Aggregate Levy Sustainability Fund (ALSF) is financed by revenue raised by The Aggregates Levy. This levy was introduced by the Finance Act 2001 and came into force on 1 April 2002. The levy is a tax on the extraction of aggregates, such as sand, stone and gravel used in construction, which is then used to bring about environmental benefits that mitigate the damage such extraction might cause.

The event saw the presentation of the main projects that have been funded by the ALSF to Elliot Morley MP. Also present were Dr Edward Impey, Director of Research and Standards, English Heritage, Richard Wakeford, Chief Executive of The Countryside Agency and Andy Brown, Chief Executive of English Nature and members of the aggregates industry, the environment and heritage sectors and various universities who have benefited from the scheme. 

The first two years of the ALSF has confirmed that there is a strong demand from voluntary, community, research and public bodies to undertake projects whose scope and size falls outside the remit of other existing grant funds. All ALSF grants have been made to projects and areas which have been affected by past and present aggregates extraction.

The Museum of London, which hosted the event, is itself a recipient of a 303,00 ALSF grant which has enabled it to develop the important new London Before London gallery, where finds made during aggregates extraction are displayed.

The ALSF grants scheme is now waiting an announcement on whether the Government will sanction the Fund to continue beyond its first two years. The decision is due to be announced in the Chancellor's Pre-Budget Report in November 2004. 

Among the numerous schemes funded by ALSF money and presented at the Milestone Event were:

ENGLISH HERITAGE:

Alderley Sandhills

182,000 has funded this project by the University of Manchester who have been studying cottages at Alderley Edge, Cheshire, which were occupied from the 1740s to the 1950s. The area was later heavily quarried for sand. The project is combining excavation of the cottages with the memories of the surviving occupants to gain a better understanding of how the buildings were used and what life there was like in the first half of the 20th century. The site was made accessible to the public through site visits and a web site, and a popular publication is planned.

Multibeam swath bathymetry sea floor archaeology studies

Two projects, which use advanced underwater survey technique's have also received 454,000 to map the submerged valley of the palaeo-Arun river off the Sussex coast. The new work, building on previous research by marine aggregates extraction companies, will help researchers from Imperial College London to identify likely sites of early prehistoric occupation within this drowned landscape.

ENGLISH NATURE:

Ice Age woolly rhino

15,000 helped Birmingham University experts excavate a partial skeleton at Whitemoor Haye Quarry, Staffordshire. Further funding uncovered three more rhino skulls and remains of mammoth, horse, reindeer and wolf. 

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve

200,000 was used to introduce a new method of deterring predators, doubling the numbers of young waders and terns that were reared this breeding season on the internationally important site. Improved public access to the reserve was another of the project's achievements.

COUNTRYSIDE AGENCY:

Poole's Cavern

59,932 was given as a 75% grant to help Buxton and District Civic Association to provide access for all to this cave in Derbyshire. There will be access to the cave for wheelchair users, remote-controlled cameras to enable those in the visitor centre to follow the progress of family and friends in the cave, and audio interpretation of the guided tour for the hard of hearing. 

Croft, Leicestershire 

A 56,000 grant has enabled Croft Parish Council to establish a new playground for village children next to a quarry that extracts more than three million tonnes of crushed rock annually.

MORE INFORMATION:

For more information on the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund Grant Scheme Milestone Event, contact:
Seabury Salmon & Associates Media Relations 
T 01584 877442 M 07968 802619 E [log in to unmask]

English Heritage: 
Duncan Bainbridge English Heritage Corporate Communications T 020 7973 3297 M 07786 198542 E [log in to unmask]

Countryside Agency: 
Isobel Coy Head of the Parlimentary and Press Office
T 0207 340 2906 M 07973 942 892 E [log in to unmask] or Nicola Hall T 0117 910 2900

English Nature: 
Heather Wilkins or Stuart Burgess, English Nature Press Office 
T 01733 455190 M 07970 098005 E [log in to unmask] or David Hodson T 01476 584825 M 07970 738723 E [log in to unmask]

For more information on individual projects mentioned above, please contact:

Alderley Edge 
Duncan Bainbridge English Heritage Corporate Communications 
T 020 7973 3297, M 07786 198542, E [log in to unmask]

Multibeam Swath Bathymetry sea floor archaeology studies
Duncan Bainbridge English Heritage Corporate Communications
T 020 7973 3297 M 07786 198542 E [log in to unmask]

Whitemoor Haye mammoth excavation 
Simon Buteux 
T 0121 414 5513 or 01905 755888 M 07970 738723

Rye Harbour Nature Reserve 
Dr Barry Yates 
T 01797 223562 M 0771 581 2503 E [log in to unmask]

Poole's Cavern, Buxton 
Christine Turner/Rachel Howgate 
T 0161 237 1061, M 07900 608330

Croft, Leicestershire 
Rachel Simpson 
T 01223 354462 M 07900 608333

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