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Celebrating 28 years of National Lottery funding with our ‘People’s Portraits’ campaign

28th Tachwedd 2022

Last week, we unveiled the final artwork in our People’s Portraits series, which is part of our UK-wide campaign celebrating the impact National Lottery funding has had on communities around the country since it began 28 years ago.

We focused on individuals who have done great things in their communities, including raising awareness about important topics, making sport more inclusive and making art more accessible to everyone, with the help of funding from National Lottery players.

Manchester Laces’ Helen Hardy, Lionesses' captain Leah Williamson, and artist Charlotte Archer with mural at Wembley Stadium
Leah Williamson, Helen Hardy, and artist Charlotte Archer in Wembley Stadium

Leah Williamson, captain of the Lionesses, honoured coaching champion with Wembley Way artwork to support women in sport

Leah Williamson helped us to unveil an art installation at Wembley Stadium that celebrated the success of women in sport, honouring Helen Hardy, the founder of Manchester Laces – one of the first inclusive women’s and non-binary football clubs in Manchester.

Leah Williamson, said: “I’m so proud to be a part of a project that champions women in football, something incredibly close to my heart and central to my life. Projects like Manchester Laces are so important in encouraging women to pursue their passion for football, and the funding from the National Lottery is integral to making these passions a reality; it enables everyone to have the opportunity to get involved and find the sport that they can love, whilst bringing them together with others.”

Helen Hardy said: “I’m delighted to be involved in this important project and honoured to be featured on the steps of such an iconic venue for football, ahead of the World Cup. The Women’s Euros this year showed how far football has come in its support of women’s role in the sport, and the support of The National Lottery is vital in helping projects like Manchester Laces come to fruition.”

Read the full story here.

Chris Packham and Milly Revill Hayward next to her portrait at The Eden Project.

Environmentalist broadcaster Chris Packham celebrates climate change champion with a mural at The Eden Project

Chris Packham helped us to unveil a mural at the Eden Project. Created by Jody Thomas with CO2 absorbing paint, it highlights Milly Revill Hayward, who was part of the group that worked to restore one of Europe’s largest areas of bogland in Scotland.

Chris Packham said: “Across the UK, people are doing incredible work to tackle climate change and one such example is Milly, whose fantastic work in Scotland has been beautifully captured through this striking piece of art created by Jody Thomas. It was a privilege to unveil the artwork and I hope this will inspire people across the UK to create or support other environmental projects in their community, as the smallest step can have the biggest impact on the world around us”

Milly Revill Hayward said: “I am honoured to be featured in this beautiful mural, sitting in one of the most important spaces in the world for nature research and conservation. Funding from The National Lottery has been instrumental in the Flows to the Future project, and thanks to them we have been able to restore approximately 7 square miles of blanket bog that have been severely damaged, and as a result key peatland species such as greenshank, golden plover and dunlin have been able to flourish. I hope this artwork inspires others to get involved in initiatives to help protect our environment so future generations can enjoy the natural world for years to come.”

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Signkid with NLA trophy.

Deaf rapper celebrated with unique installation at London's Roundhouse

We celebrated the work being done to make the arts accessible for all by unveiling a piece of artwork that represents the achievements of deaf British writer, producer and sign song rapper, Kevin Walker, aka Signkid, who won the2022 National Lottery Awards in the Arts, Culture & Film category. The artwork, made by Lazerian Studios, is an interpretation of Signkid’s work, story and legacy. It shows two hand-shaped sculptures that make the ‘V’ shape, representing the BSL symbol for ‘Visual’.

Signkid said, “It’s an honour for my work to be recognised with such an incredible piece of art, at one of the most iconic music venues in the world, and to win a National Lottery Award. I’ve been able to achieve amazing things with the help of The National Lottery funding, so I would love this campaign to inspire others from the deaf community and beyond to not to let any barriers stand in their way”.

Read the full story here.

Chris Tarrant and Vladyslava Zhmuro in the first intallation of the People's Portrait at the Royal Albert Dock in Liverpool.

Broadcaster Chris Tarrant honoured a Ukrainian refugee with a spectacular projection in Liverpool

Chris Tarrant, who recently welcomed a Ukrainian family into his home, teamed up with us to unveil a striking artwork at Royal Albert Dock in Liverpool. Liverpool is to be the host city for the Eurovision song contest 2023 on behalf of 2022 winners Ukraine. The projection highlights Vladyslava Zhmuro, a refugee who fled the Ukrainian war and now works to help others at the Welsh Refugee Council.

Chris Tarrant said: “The work from Ukrainian artist Sergey Piskunov is breath-taking and to see the portrait projected onto the iconic Royal Albert Dock in Liverpool – which will show its support of Ukraine next year by hosting the Eurovision song contest on the country’s behalf - honours Vladyslava’s story beautifully. I’m incredibly proud to unveil the artwork and shine a light on the work that the Welsh Refugee Council is doing with the help of The National Lottery funding.”

Vladyslava Zhmuro said: “There are so many people displaced in this world, and I feel incredibly lucky to have found safety in the UK. I want to thank everyone who has helped me so far and everyone who supports Ukraine. I’m honoured to be featured in such a powerful artwork drawing attention to the refugee crisis. It’s been a privilege working with The National Lottery and the talented Sergey Piskunov. Only together can we help those in need.”

Read the full story here.