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Northern Heartlands

One of sixteen Great Place Schemes in the UK funded by Heritage Lottery Fund and Arts Council England, Northern Heartlands use creativity, culture and heritage to work with communities, encourage a sense of place and enable those who live and work in that place to have the confidence and resources to be able to influence policy and decision-making.

Northern Heartlands is using a ‘cultural landscape’ approach, aiming to make people aware of how their landscape has been shaped by everything that has happened in the past, everything that is happening now and everything that might happen in the future.

Our Great Place is in County Durham and includes the catchment of two rivers – the Tees and the Wear – extending from their sources in the North Pennines to the lowland arc through which they flow.   The area includes the towns of Barnard Castle, Bishop Auckland, Shildon, Crook, Tow Law and Willington, all of which serve a hinterland of smaller towns and villages, isolated farms and wide expanses of open moorland.

The Great Place Scheme is a National Lottery-funded programme to ensure that investment in arts and culture also has the biggest possible impact on local economies, jobs, education, community cohesion and health and wellbeing.

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