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Wales’ largest and most popular heritage attraction, St Fagans National Museum of History, is appealing for votes after reaching the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards - the search for the UK’s favourite ever National Lottery-funded projects.  

It is the only project representing Wales in the Best Heritage Project category.  They beat off stiff competition from more than 700 organisations to reach the public voting stage in this year’s National Lottery Awards, which celebrate the inspirational people and projects who do extraordinary things with the help of National Lottery funding.

The project with the most votes will be crowned the winner and receive a £10,000 cash prize, an iconic National Lottery Awards trophy and attend a star-studded glittering awards ceremony to be broadcast on BBC One in November.

St Fagans National Museum of History is one of Europe’s leading open air museums. The Museum, which celebrated its 70th birthday last year with a major National Lottery funded makeover, showcases how the people of Wales have lived – from the world of a 230,000-year-old Neanderthal child to present day.

The makeover at St Fagans was part of the £30 million ‘Making History’ project to redevelop the museum with three new galleries, a creative workshop - Gweithdy, the recreation of two new buildings based on archaeological evidence and improved visitor facilities for schools and the public. The grant of £11.5 million from the National Lottery towards the project is the largest grant ever awarded by the National Lottery Heritage Fund in Wales.

David Anderson, the Director General of National Museum Wales, says:

We are thrilled that St Fagans has been shortlisted as a finalist in the Heritage Category in The 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards.

“St Fagans holds a special place in the hearts of the people of Wales and is one of the nation’s most treasured heritage sites. This is because it is a people’s museum, exploring

history through everyday lives. Following our major redevelopment, which we unveiled to the public last year, we have preserved everything that people love about St Fagans, but introduced important new dimensions which make it fit for the future.

“To win this award would be a huge thank you to the dedication of the hundreds of volunteers and community groups who made this redevelopment project possible.”

Jonathan Tuchner, from the National Lottery, added:

It’s thanks to National Lottery players, who raise more than £30 million each week for good causes, that brilliant projects like those in the finals of the National Lottery Awards are possible. 

“St Fagans is doing an incredible job in its local community and the work they do is hugely impressive. They thoroughly deserve to be in the finals of the 25th Birthday National Lottery Awards and with your support they could be a winner.”

To vote for St Fagans go to OR use the hashtag #NLAStFagans on twitter. You can also follow the campaign on Twitter: hashtag #NLAwards. Voting runs from 9am on 24 July until midnight on 21 August.  

The award categories reflect the main areas of National Lottery funding: heritage, sport, arts, culture and film, community and charity, sporting legend which will be decided by a public vote alongside lifetime achievement, young hero, special recognition, and twelve local legend awards, which will be selected by a panel made up of representatives from the National Lottery family.

The first National Lottery draw took place on 19 November 1994.  The 25th birthday is a moment to celebrate the extraordinary impact The National Lottery has had on the UK and, most importantly, to say thank you to National Lottery players for contributing tens of millions of pounds every week to good causes.

Whilst The National Lottery is all about winning – with more than 5,100 millionaires created since 1994 – its primary purpose is all about giving. National Lottery players have raised more than £40 billion for good causes in the areas of arts, sport, heritage and community over the past 25 years. More than 565,000 National Lottery grants have been awarded since 1994, the equivalent of around 200 life-changing projects in every UK postcode district helping to strengthen communities, deliver sporting success, protect the environment, unleash local creative talent and look after the elderly and those at risk.