Former Eastender Larry Lamb Swaps Albert Square For St George's Market To Celebrate National Lottery Award
28th August 2014
TV star Larry Lamb joined traders behind the stalls at Belfast’s St George’s Market to celebrate their victory as Best Heritage Project in this year’s National Lottery Awards.
St George’s Market is one of Belfast’s oldest visitor attractions dating back to the 1890s and was renovated and restored thanks to a National Lottery grant of more than £2 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund.
Since it reopened its elegant Victorian doorways in 1999 it has trebled its trading days and welcomes more than 600,000 visitors each year.
St George’s Market received 4,355 votes to be named Best Heritage Project in the annual search to find the nation’s favourite National Lottery projects.
Larry Lamb, no stranger to market traders from his time on long running BBC soap EastEnders, joined stall holders at Saturday’s City Food and Craft Market.
He said: “St George’s Market is a living, breathing market place which bustles with energy and activity.
“It was terrific to meet the many characters who help create such a vibrant atmosphere which makes St George’s Market such a unique place.
“They thoroughly deserve their award and I would like to congratulate them on this wonderful achievement.
Jackie O’ Sullivan, from the National Lottery, added: “It is fantastic to see St George’s Market be recognised with a National Lottery Award.
Its restoration has had such a positive impact both socially and economically on its community.
“National Lottery players can be proud to have helped regenerate such an iconic landmark.”
St George’s Market will feature on a special star-studded ceremony broadcast on BBC One on 19 September. They will also receive a £2,000 cash prize in addition to a coveted National Lottery Awards trophy.
More about St George’s Market:
St George’s Market is one of Belfast’s oldest attractions dating back to the 1890s.
Its two-year renovation project, funded by a grant of more than £2 million by the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund, preserved its Victorian architecture and created a modern market place providing space to trade and grow for more than 170 small local businesses which has had a massive and sustained positive impact on the local area.
Since its restoration, the market has gone from strength to strength, trebling the number of days it trades from one day a week to three and the huge variety and quality of products on offer helps attract more than 600,000 visitors each year
More about the Awards:
National Lottery players raise over £33 million a week and that money goes to support people and projects across the UK. The Awards are a great way to show National Lottery players where their funding has gone and the life-changing difference playing the Lottery every week is making to communities across the UK.
There are seven categories in the Awards, reflecting the main areas of Lottery funding: arts, education, environment, health, heritage, sport, and voluntary/charity.
Notes to editors
For more information contact Ruairi O’Kane on 07788 612804 or email Ruairi.O'Kane@lotterygoodcauses.org.uk