A selection of heritage sites from across the British Isles are set to receive the prestigious Sandford Award for heritage education at a virtual ceremony on Wednesday 7th December.

The Sandford Award recognises the enormous range of learning that happens outside of the classroom, and the memorable, often life-changing experiences that the participating visitors enjoy.

The Award is administered by Bishop Grosseteste University, in partnership with the Heritage Education Trust. The Trust is the only body in existence to provide independent, quality assurance for sites that offer formal learning programmes, with recognition also given to family programmes and other informal learning.

The Award scheme was conceived in 1975 as a result of the European Year of Architecture. Founder members were Lord Montagu (English Heritage), Lord Sandford (representing the Department of the Environment) and Commander Michael Saunders Watson (Historic Houses Association). Their purpose was to raise the profile of the educational value of historic properties.

Since the first awards were made in 1978, over 500 heritage sites and services have received a Sandford Award.

Professor Scott Fleming, Deputy Vice Chancellor, Bishop Grosseteste University commented:

"At Bishop Grosseteste University we are delighted to be able to continue our support for the Heritage Education Trust. Many of our programmes in the humanities, social sciences and teacher education are linked directly to this important element of the visitor economy. The Sanford Awards recognise immense hard work and sector-leading excellence. We are especially grateful to the team of colleagues who make it all possible."

This year we will be joined by broadcaster, author, cultural campaigner and Chair of the Royal Parks, Loyd Grossman, CBE, who is the guest speaker at the ceremony. Among the winners are Lincoln Castle, Rosslyn Chapel, The Tower of London, Jackfield Tile Museum and Carisbrooke Castle.

Michael Maddison, Chair of the Heritage Education Trust, stated:

This year’s winners of the prestigious Sandford Award have demonstrated yet again the determination of heritage sites to provide the highest quality of learning for all who visit and especially for young people. The focus on ensuring that everyone can access the treasures existing at each site helps us all to appreciate that heritage matters and that the sector serves to enrich the lives of all who visit”.

Sandford Award Winners 2022

Abbey House and Kirkstall Abbey


Blenheim Palace

British Motor Museum

Carisbrooke Castle, English Heritage

Cromford Mills

Dover Castle, English Heritage

Experience Barnsley Museum and Discovery Centre

Geevor Tin Mine

Gressenhall Farm and Workhouse

Jackfield Tile Museum

Jewish Museum London

National Trust, Knole

Leeds Castle

Leeds City Museum

Lincoln Castle

M Shed, Bristol

Murton Park

Museum of London Docklands

Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery

The Old Royal Naval College Greenwich

The Robert Burns Birthplace Museum

Rosslyn Chapel

National Trust, Sutton Hoo

Tamworth Castle

The Judge's Lodging

The Museum of English Rural Life (The MERL)

The Navan Centre and Fort

Historic Royal Palaces, The Tower of London

Valence House Museum

Verulamium Museum

Warner Bros. Studio Tour London: The Making of Harry Potter

Weald and Downland Living Museum

Weston Park

Winding House Museum

Wroxeter Roman City, English Heritage

York's Chocolate Story

Congratulations to all our winners, and we can't wait to celebrate your outstanding work next week.

Entries for the 2023 Sandford Awards will open on Monday 5th December.

For more information or to register interest in applying please contact:

Jayne Ellis

Sandford Award Administrator

Email: sandford@bishopg.ac.uk

Website: Heritage Education Trust: Home of the Sandford Award

Twitter: @sandfordaward Sandford Award (@sandfordaward) / Twitter

Facebook: Sandford Award Sandford Award | Lincoln | Facebook

Instagram: Sandford Award

Photo Credit: Historic Royal Palaces, The Tower of London.

30th November 2022

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