Grants and Funding

Historic Environment Repair Grant

Grants to support the cost of conservation-standard repair projects for buildings, places of worship or ancient monuments which are of special architectural, historic or archaeological interest.

Exzterior of Inverness Creative Academy

1 Overview

The next application deadline is 15 January 2023. For more information, please see the How to apply page. If you are interested in apply for a project involving repairs after the January 2023 deadline, you should apply under our new open programme, Historic Environment Grants (HEG), which is scheduled to launch in late 2022. An overview of the HEG can be found on Page 9 of our 'Grants Framework 2021 Onwards'.

Under the Historic Environment Repair Grant programme we normally offer grants from £10,000 - £500,000 to support conservation-standard repair projects across Scotland which secure the original fabric of historic buildings and ancient monuments using traditional materials and skills, in line with our Advisory Standards of Conservation and Repair. HES grant support will form part of a wider package of partnership funding. Contact us to discuss the potential level of grant for your organisation.

If your application is accepted for initial assessment will let you know if your project has passed initial assessment checks within 4 months.

Please note that the HES grant assessment process is separate from the statutory planning consent process.

2 Eligibility

Under this programme we expect to fund:
  • Not-for-profit organisations such as charitable trusts, local authorities or religious bodies;
  • Partnerships led by not-for-profit organisations
Applicant organisations must be formally constituted with a clear governance and financial structure and have their own bank account.
If you are applying as a partnership you will need to nominate a lead applicant. The lead applicant should provide a signed partnership agreement showing the involvement of each partner and how the project will be managed financially.
Private owners or commercial organisations are eligible to apply, but are not a priority for support under this grant programme. These applicants would need to demonstrate that wider benefits to the public significantly outweigh their private gain.
We can fund projects whereby the applicant organisation:
  • owns the heritage asset or;
  • holds a full repairing lease which has at least 21 years to run or;
  • in the case of an ancient monument, has the written permission of the owner to carry out conservation works on the monument;
  • in the case of a place of worship, has written permission of the governing body
We can fund projects which meet all of the following:
  • delivering conservation-standard repair works to significant historic assets
  • professional team including Conservation Accredited Professional Advisors (or Advanced Conservation Accredited Professional Advisors for A-listed buildings)
  • yet to begin
  • timetabled for five years or less
  • achieving one or more of our grant outcomes
  • not funded by a City Heritage Trust (as their funding is via HES grants)
Owners must insure and maintain the building, or agree to maintain the ancient monument, and allow an agreed level of access to the public in return for financial help.

HES grant intervention rate:

HES awards a grant based on a percentage of the total grant eligible costs, which will be determined in discussion with HES as part of the process of agreeing the repair scheme. Applicants are expected to maximise opportunities to secure match funding and should be aware of the following intervention rates which are normally used for different types of applicants:

  • Charities: normally a maximum of 40%
  • Local authorities: normally a maximum of 25%
  • Private owners: dependent upon financial circumstances, but normally a maximum of 33%

3 Eligible costs

We can fund:

  • historic fabric repair costs
  • traditional skills training for professional craftspeople and construction workers
  • fees for conservation accredited professional advisors
  • evaluation and maintenance planning costs
  • contingency
  • inflation allowance
  • non-recoverable VAT

We do not fund:

  • demolition
  • repair or installation of services
  • extension
  • alterations
  • internal works
  • routine maintenance
  • minor repairs

4 Application assessment

Historic Environment Repair Grant bids are assessed in competition with each other. We will assess how well your project achieves our grant outcomes (below), how well planned and deliverable it is and how you plan to sustain the scheme benefits in the longer term. We will assess the urgency and level of risk facing your heritage asset.

We will consider the overall value for money your project offers against all of these factors as well as the grant intervention level requested and the need for grant support. You should apply to us at outline design stage.

5 Outcomes

We assess how well your project will achieve our grant outcomes. In your application tell us in detail how your project will achieve one or more of our grant outcomes listed below:

HERITAGE AND SOCIETY: The historic environment makes a real difference to people’s lives

HERITAGE AND THE ENVIRONMENT: The historic environment is looked after, protected and managed for the generations to come

HERITAGE AND THE ECONOMY: The historic environment makes a broader contribution to the economy of Scotland and its people

HERITAGE AND CREATIVITY: The historic environment inspires a creative and vibrant Scotland

6 How to apply

The next application deadline is 15 January 2023. If you are interested in apply for a project involving repairs after the January 2023 deadline, you should apply under our new open programme, Historic Environment Grants (HEG), which is scheduled to launch in late 2022. An overview of the HEG can be found on Page 9 of our 'Grants Framework 2021 Onwards'.

Please note that due to limited budget availability, funds are only likely to be available for projects with expenditure commencing from April 2023. However, the normal scheme development undertaken with HES architects will be able start as soon as projects are accepted on the programme in September 2022.

Expressions of Interest

If you are interested in applying for a grant from HES, you will need to submit an expression of interest first to receive feedback on your proposal. You can submit an expression of interest form at any time, and we aim to respond within 10 working days. We recommend you do not start work on your application form until you’ve received a response to your expression of interest.

Submit expression of interest


Applicants will be expected to have an outline project design, with an estimated funding package and programme. 

We will let you know if your application has been accepted for full assessment within three months. If your bid is accepted, we will work with you to agree appropriate conservation-standard repair works and associated traditional skills, evaluation and maintenance plans so that you and your professional advisors can incorporate these into your project design, programme and funding plans.

The following process is used to reach a final decision on your grant award:

Application is through our Grants Online Application System. New users must register to use the system.

Apply now

Useful links

Projects which relate to repair work must be carried out in accordance with conservation best practice. You can find more about what we consider best practice in our Advisory Standards of Conservation and Repair.

Historic Environment Scotland is bound by the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act. This means that any information that you send us or which is provided to help process your application may be made publicly available. However, any sensitive information you give us will be covered by the relevant legislation and will be dealt with accordingly.