A project behind plans to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the twinning of Bristol and Hannover received a huge surprise when former EastEnders and Holby City star Don Gilet, revealed to the group that they are to receive a £6,800 National Lottery grant.
Millions of viewers will witness the exciting moment which is being broadcast as part of the National Lottery Awards show on BBC One on Wednesday 27 September at 10.45pm.
In Someone Else’s Shoes, Myers-Insole Local Learning CIC will use the funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund to create a touring exhibition celebrating the links between the cities, which were the first from Britain and Germany to be twinned after the Second World War.
The group were invited to London to attend the recording of the BBC One National Lottery Awards show, which celebrates the nation’s favourite Lottery-funded projects.
They were not aware that their funding application had been successful until Don Gilet delivered the shock news in front of a star-studded audience which included Richard Blackwood, Martin Clunes, Kimberley Walsh, Tamzin Outhwaite and double gold medal winning Paralympian Libby Clegg.
Ruth Myers, co-director of Myers-Insole Local Learning CIC, said: “We were absolutely blown away when Don Gilet told us the news that we’d received our funding live on camera. We had no idea that was the real reason we’d been asked to attend the event.
“In 1947, while Germany was still recovering from the war, children from Bristol sent shoes to the poverty stricken children of Hannover. Having no money, Hannover ‘paid’ for the shoes with music – a gesture which developed into a formal twinning relationship.
“In partnership with the Bristol-Hannover Council, we will use this funding to work with the Bristol exchange alumni to capture the personal stories of this relationship over the last 70 years and present these stories to a wider audience through a touring exhibition.”
Sports presenter and Strictly Come Dancing champion, Ore Oduba, is presenting the show for the first time. He said: “It was brilliant to see the delight on the faces of the group when they were told they had received their National Lottery funding.
“National Lottery players raise £30 million every week for good causes which make a life-changing difference to communities right across the UK.
“The National Lottery Awards show shines a light on the work of these projects and the transformational power of Lottery funding. Everyone who plays the National Lottery should be very proud of what they are helping to achieve.”