HES in the Draft Budget 2018-19

Details of funding for Historic Environment Scotland in the Scottish Government’s draft budget.

The Scottish Government published its Draft Budget 2018-19 on 14 December with details on the funding of Historic Environment Scotland within the Culture, Tourism and External Affairs portfolio.

The total budget for HES in 2018-19 is £92.2 million, an increase of just under 9%.

Capital Expenditure is increased to £6 million but the rest of the grant is reduced to £32.6 million, a drop of almost 11% following a 4% reduction the previous year. This is against HES generating a forecast income of £57 million, a 27% increase over the previous period which should be in line with their record breaking summer season.

While the Draft Budget states that HES will continue to dispense grants it does not specify the amount: the Cabinet Secretary for Culture, Tourism and External Affairs has directed them to offer grants totalling £14.5 million each year for the last 11 years and we understand this will be maintained.

The overall increase is to be welcomed but is built upon a very successful couple of years due to increased tourist activity with Outlander and the Year of History, Heritage & Archaeology and a weak Sterling no doubt playing a part. Raising 62% of its annual costs is a first.

Historic Environment Scotland Priorities

In 2018-19 HES will:

  • continue to lead the delivery of ‘Our Place in Time’: The Historic Environment Strategy for Scotland;
  • promote and deliver a range of events in support of Scotland’s Year of Young People;
  • offer grant support to help regenerate and promote the active use, care and maintenance of the historic environment, promoting sustainable economic development and reinforcing local identity;
  • provide expert advice and guidance to deliver the right balance between conservation and sustainable change; and
  • promote learning and education to enhance knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of the historic environment, delivering learning programmes linked to the Curriculum for Excellence, to National and Vocational Qualifications and to opportunities in further and higher education.

Historic Environment Scotland (HES) Spending Plans (Level 3)

Level 3 2016-17
Draft Budget
Operational Costs 81.6 84.8 92.2
Capital Expenditure 3.4 5.6 6.0
Less Income (40.0) (44.9) (57.1)
Total 45.0 45.5 41.1
of which:
Fiscal Resource 38.3 36.6 32.6
Non-cash 3.3 3.3 2.5
Capital 3.4 5.6 6.0 

What the Historic Environment Scotland budget does

Historic Environment Scotland is the lead public body for the historic environment in Scotland, and takes the lead in delivering Scotland’s historic environment strategy ‘Our Place in Time’, in addition to having delegated responsibility for the care and management of Scottish Ministers’ Properties in Care. A significant portion of the grant-in-aid funding which HES receives is passed on to Scottish communities by way of grant schemes which fund the regeneration of Scotland’s town centres and the repair of historic buildings.

Full details.