SINCE beginning 25 years ago the National Lottery has raised more than £17m to preserve Wirral's heritage - but what projects have benefitted?

The first National Lottery draw took place on November 19, 1994 and in a quarter of a century more than £40bn has been raised for good causes across the UK.

Cash from every ticket sold has been invested in areas such as arts, sport, community and heritage.

In Wirral the money raised by National Lottery players has helped to preserve some of the crown jewels of the borough's heritage.

The Lady Lever Art Gallery, which is the only major public galleries in the UK built by its founder to house a private collection, was returned to its former Edwardian glory thanks to cash from the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

Other projects include encouraging volunteers to help save and protect wildlife on their doorstep as part of Cheshire Wildlife Trust's groundbreaking Natural Futures and seeing the UK's last remaining steam tug-tender the Daniel Adamson, which was first built at Cammell Laird in 1903, take to the waters again after a full restoration.

David Renwick, a director at The National Lottery Heritage Fund, said: “It’s the National Lottery’s 25th birthday and a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the impact of National Lottery funding across the UK and in Wirral.

"From saving historic buildings and helping nature to thrive to celebrating our diverse cultures and shared stories, there is so much that quite simply would not be possible without National Lottery players.”

Across the UK, the National Lottery Heritage Fund has invested £900m in places of worship, £2.4bn to more than 1,200 museums and galleries, £115m into community heritage and £1.6bn in landscapes and nature all since 1994.

National Lottery funded sites across the country will be offering free entry or special offers between November 23 and December 1 to say thanks.

To find your nearest offers visit