Lincoln Cathedral launched an urgent fundraising appeal as it tries to reach a target of £1.5million to stabilise its finances.
The cathedral has been hit hard by the coronavirus crisis, including visitors numbers and event cancellations, and staff redundancies.
It is also unlikely that there will be a return to pre-COVID visitor numbers in the near future as footfall is still well below the expected levels.
Between April 1 and July 31, 2020, the cathedral lost £768,972 income from visitor admissions, events, donations and commercial activity in the shop and Refectory.
The cathedral has entered a period of consultation over closing the Refectory cafe too.
Income from endowments and restricted funds that support the running of the cathedral have shrunk by about one third as investments have been hit.
Many of the fixed costs have remained consistent and the government schemes have not been enough to ensure the viability of the organisation looking after the landmakr.
The ‘Provide Protect, Preserve’ recovery appeal aims to help secure the cathedral’s future as a place of worship and visitor attraction.
There are a number of ways people can support the appeal, including direct debit (six-month pledge), ongoing direct debit or to pledge a legacy gift in your will.
Matthew Tarling, Grants and Data Officer at the cathedral, said: “As a charity, unrestricted funds are incredibly important, as they support every aspect of the Cathedral’s activities – including conservation and music.
“Our heritage, traditions and people are under threat today more than ever before. This is why we need everyone’s help to try and raise £1.5 million in order to minimise the negative impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The Very Revd Christine Wilson, Dean of Lincoln said the appeal will “help us to protect Lincoln Cathedral’s tradition of choral and musical excellence at a time when the arts are under threat more than ever”.
She added that it will also help to “preserve the precious built heritage we have in the Cathedral, and the craftspeople, and professionals whose passion and skill we rely on to sustain the building”.