Heritage sites to be open all year thanks to extra funding

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ALMOST all Jersey Heritage sites will be open all year round from next month.

The only exception is Elizabeth Castle, which will still close for winter owing to the difficulty reaching the attraction in bad weather.

Previously the sites only opened between March and October.

The change in policy was ‘largely’ down to increased government funding for the charity, according to Jersey Heritage, which is responsible for landmark sites such as Mont Orgueil Castle and La Hougue Bie.

Jersey Heritage chief executive officer Jon Carter said: ‘The introduction of year-round opening marks an exciting new chapter for Jersey Heritage and the extra government funding available as a result of the landmark States decision has undoubtedly been a catalyst.’

The government’s funding increase follows a decision by the States Assembly in 2019 to commit 1% of its overall annual budget to support the Island’s arts, heritage and culture sector.

Mr Carter added: ‘Knowing the 1% is there for our sector every year has emboldened us to take the decision to open the sites daily all year round.

‘The incredible local support we have received over the past few years has also played its part; visits by Islanders to our sites have tripled and now account for about 30% of overall visits.

‘We have also seen a significant increase in the number of people becoming Jersey Heritage members and expressing their support for our work.’

Economic Development Minister Kirsten Morel called it ‘great news’, which he said tied in with the government’s heritage strategy launched last year ‘and will be welcomed by Islanders and by visitors to the Island, who now have even more opportunities to learn about and benefit from Jersey’s rich history’.

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