UNIVERSITY bosses have been given a major boost in their bid to celebrate the return of the Lindisfarne Gospels to the region.
Durham University is hoping to stage Lindisfarne Gospels Durham 2013 and Beyond project, which will focus on an exhibition and festival surrounding the visit of the famous manuscript to the region next summer.
The university was given a boost when the Heritage Lottery Fund gave its initial support to the project.
Dr Keith Bartlett, Lindisfarne Gospels programme director, said: “We are delighted that the Heritage Lottery Fund has given us this initial support.
“In 2013, Lindisfarne Gospels Durham will be at the heart of a North East-wide celebration of the region’s cultural heritage.”
The exhibition will take place on Durham’s Unesco World Heritage Site and brings together many objects found in St Cuthbert’s tomb. Thousands of people are expected to flock to see the Gospels.
Lindisfarne Gospels Durham will be accompanied by a festival throughout the North East including a learning project that will connect people to the story of the manuscript.
The Lindisfarne Gospels is one of the world’s oldest books and has a unique place in the culture and heritage of the North East.
The manuscript has survived wars, the dissolution of the monasteries and ravages of time. The Lindisfarne Gospels and St Cuthbert’s Gospel will be on loan from the British Library.
Dr Bartlett said: “The project aims to provide opportunities for everyone across the North East to learn about our most famous saint, St Cuthbert, and the creation and importance of this awe-inspiring manuscript.”