ONE of the North-East most famous heritage sites is trying to raise awareness about its need for money to maintain it for future generations.

Durham Cathedral is holding a “giving day” to try and raise money for its Foundation 2020, a public fundraising campaign with a target of £10million.

It is being held on Wednesday, April 18, to mark Unesco’s International World Heritage Day, aimed at encouraging people to think about the importance of cultural heritage and how it is conserved.

Gaye Kirby, the cathedral’s head of development, said: “If we are able to create a £10 million endowment fund by 2020 this will support the day to day maintenance and conservation costs of the cathedral in perpetuity, helping ensure it is cared for in an appropriate way for future generations to enjoy.”

“Being able to share our faith and heritage globally is part of the cathedral’s vision.

On Thursday, all donations to the cathedral will go towards Foundation 2020 and will be matched by the Durham branch of Barclays Bank, which in turn will be match funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, effectively quadrupling donations made on the day.

The cathedral is also putting on a series of 15 minute pop-up talks, which take place in the North Transept and will illustrate different aspects of life at the historic place of worship.

These range from the cathedral’s clerk of works, Scott Richardson speaking about the cathedral tower repairs; the Very Reverend Andrew Tremlett, Dean of Durham, talking about the changing face of Christianity and the significance of cathedrals; and cathedral chapter members, Reverend Canon Professor Simon Oliver talking about the liturgy and history of evensong.

Visitors will be able to take photographs inside the cathedral, and are encouraged to share them on social media using #GivingDay and #Foundation2020.

Ms Kirby added: “We are hugely appreciative of the support for Foundation 2020 by National Lottery Players via the Heritage Lottery Fund, who are match funding all donations to Foundation 2020 up to £1million, and to Barclays Bank who are matching funding donations made on Wednesday, April 18 as well as providing staff who are helping on the day itself.”

World heritage celebrations continue on Saturday, April 21, with a heritage skills fair that includes public tours of the cathedral’s works yard and talks about the challenges of conserving the cathedral.

In additional there are public tours of the newly opened north-west tower, as well as family activities at the Durham World Heritage Site Visitor Centre, in Owengate.

Full details can be found at