After a period of wide consultation, Ed Vaizey MP, Minister of State for Culture and the Digital Economy, has announced final Government approval for the separation of English Heritage into two organisations.
A new charity, retaining the name English Heritage, will run the National Heritage Collection of historic properties. A newly-named non-departmental public body, Historic England, will be dedicated to offering expert advice, championing the wider historic environment and providing support for stakeholders in the heritage sector. The changes will come into effect on 1 April 2015. The Minister confirmed that the Government will provide additional funding of £88.5m to invest in the National Heritage Collection. You can find the full details of the announcement here
The English Heritage Charity will be responsible, under an operating licence from Historic England, for the care of the National Heritage Collection. Whilst all of its properties will remain in public ownership, it will be able to make the most of commercial and philanthropic opportunities. The additional Government investment will deal with urgent conservation defects and enable the upgrading of visitor facilities including the renewal of outdated displays. This will provide a better experience for visitors which will increase visitor numbers and grow membership. A summary of the business plan for the English Heritage Charity, which anticipates financial break even in 2022/23, has been agreed by Government and published today (Oct 14).