The Don Catchment Rivers Trust has received initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) to fully develop plans for its proposed Living Heritage of the River Don project, it was announced today. The project aims to reconnect people, communities and decision makers back to the River Don by enhancing and celebrating its rich natural, built and industrial heritage

The support represents an HLF endorsement of an initial project outline produced by the Trust, and includes funding of £81,646 to be used to prepare an application for a full grant at a later date.

The Trust’s proposed project involves work in the river to encourage the once prolific salmon to return to the River Don. The project will also formalise a long-distance heritage trail from Doncaster to Sheffield and provide opportunities for people and communities to learn from the heritage that surrounds them, helping to develop new skills and interact with their heritage in new ways.

South Yorkshire owes much to the rivers that run through the area and yet we have, until recently, turned our back on them as dirty, lifeless places.  Since the 1990s water pollution has been reduced, transforming the natural heritage of the river into something that should be more valued, enjoyed and celebrated.

David Rowley, Chairman of Don Catchment Rivers Trust said: “We’re delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this support. The rivers of the Don catchment historically provided prosperity to South Yorkshire, it’s time to recognise, restore and celebrate their contribution to our heritage. We hope to capture the imagination of the people of South Yorkshire with the return of salmon to the River Don and the creation of a long distance heritage trail along the river and canal.”

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