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The Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability secures National Lottery support



22 October 2019

The Royal Hospital for Neuro-disability has received a grant of £69,700 from The National Lottery Heritage Fund for a two year heritage project to create a sustainable public engagement programme for the RHN’s new disability history archive.

Made possible by money raised by National Lottery players, the programme is aimed at local school children and people living with disabilities and begins in December 2019 and concludes November 2021.

The public engagement programme will provide insight into the lives of people living with chronic or long-term illnesses over the last 165 years. School workshops will enable local young people to learn about Victorian history and medicine. Patients at the RHN and people living in the community with disabilities will take part in art workshops to learn about and respond creatively to archive items. The workshops will be supported by our Therapeutic Art team and a cohort of specially trained heritage volunteers. Volunteers will also learn about archive preservation and storage.

Paul Allen, RHN Chief Executive, said, “We are delighted that the National Lottery are supporting this project, which will enable wider audiences to learn about the RHN’s important contribution to medical care over the last 165 years.”

There is growing interest in the history of medical care in the UK. One of the oldest medical charities in the UK, the RHN holds an important place in medical history, pioneering the provision of long-term care for people with chronic illnesses and more recently care and treatment for people with severe brain injuries. The RHN archive traces the history of the hospital from its origins as ‘The Hospital for Incurables’ in 1854. Now that the archive service has been established and following the appointment of an Archivist in 2018, we want to share our unique heritage with a wide public audience.

Stuart Hobley, The National Lottery Heritage Fund Area Director for London & South said “Thanks to National Lottery Players, we are thrilled to support the RHN in their project to make accessible and share their important archive collection with a wider range of people through an exciting public engagement programme.”