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A world centre for the environment based in Yorkshire and a major redevelopment of Portsmouth harbour are the first...
A world centre for the environment based in Yorkshire and a major redevelopment of Portsmouth harbour are the first two landmark projects to receive funds from the Millennium Commission.

Other successful projects in the second round of grant awards announced today by the Millennium Commission chairman, Virginia Bottomley, include a programme for recreating the native woodlands of Scotland, a conservation and education centre for London Zoo and the restoration of the Welsh Highland Railway.

'Today's awards demonstrate again the range and diversity of work that the commission will be supporting,' Mrs Bottomley said. 'These are projects that will appeal to people of all ages, all backgrounds and in all parts of the country. They reward the imagination and enthusiasm of the applicants.

'All the projects we are supporting today share a clear emphasis on the environment, on conservation and on providing new public access to the world around us for present and future generations.

'We are delighted to confirm two national landmark projects, both of which could become internationally recognised symbols of the UK as we move into the third millennium.'

The Millennium Commission has awarded grants totalling £109m to 54 projects throughout the UK, the total cost of which will be £252m.

The projects are:

The Earth Centre - Conisbrough, nr. Doncaster, South Yorkshire: Grant of up to £50m, towards a total project cost of £125m, establishing a state-of-the-art world centre for environmental research and sustainable technology.

The Renaissance of Portsmouth Harbour - Portsmouth and Gosport, Hampshire: Grant of up to £40m for an £86m harbour development focusing on the creation of an international maritime leisure complex.

The Millennium Forest for Scotland - Throughout Scotland: Grant offer of £5.75m towards an £11.5m series of 45 individual projects aimed at significantly extending native woodlands and conserving wildlife in Scotland.

Trans Pennine Trail - Liverpool to Hull & coast to coast from Southport to Hornsea: Grant of £5.33m a £13m linked route for walkers and cyclists extending 714 kms across the country from Merseyside to Humberside. Part of the Sustran national cycle network, the scenic route will be largely accessible to disabled people.

Welsh Highland Railway Restoration - Porthmadog, Gwynedd, N. Wales: Grant of £4.3m towards the £9.47m restoration of a vital railway link between Porthmadog and Caernarfon, first established in the Welsh Highlands over 160 years ago.

London Zoo Conservation Education Centre - Regent's Park, London: Grant of £2.2m for the construction of a £4.4m education centre promoting conservation in the natural world and serving as a catalyst for change in our approach to zoos in the 21st century.

The Courtyard Community Project - Goole, Humberside: Grant offer of £462,000 for a £924,000 flagship project to create a community centre through the renovation of a former Victorian school.

Restoration of the Glan-Llyn Youth Centre - Nr. Bala, Gwynedd, North Wales: Grant of £390,000 towards the £900,000 restoration and upgrading of Glan-Llyn, a residential multi-activity outdoor centre on the shores of Lake Bala, run by Urdd Gobaith Cymru, one of Wales' largest youth charity organisations.

Meanwood Valley Urban Farm - Meanwood, Leeds: Grant of £175,000 for the development of a £350,000 enviromnent centre designed as a local visitor attraction in an inner-city area.

Lawrenny Village Hall and Youth Hostel - Lawrenny, Dyfed, Wales: Grant of £131,000 towards a £262,000 community project to regenerate the isolated community of Lawrenny with a refurbished and upgraded village hall and Youth Hostel dormitory accommodation.

The commission also announced a feasibility study grant of £30,000 to Larne Borough Council in Northern Ireland in connection with its £3m application to recreate the Gobbins Cliff Path, along the spectacular coastline of Island Magee, County Antrim. On completion of the feasibility study, towards which the commission will contribute 50% of the cost, the commission will decide whether to award a grant to the project early in 1996.

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