The National Lottery Awards 2006 put film projects in the spotlight

The regional and country finalists for The National Lottery Awards 2006 have just been announced, and some of the UK’s most innovative film projects will now be competing in a public vote against a wide range of Lottery funded initiatives to decide the UK’s favourite National Lottery funded projects.
The National Lottery Awards aim to celebrate and recognise the difference that people have made with Lottery funding. Over £1.9 billion of National Lottery funding has been invested in film throughout the UK, and the projects short-listed for the Awards really demonstrate the breadth and scale of these initiatives. They include:
Talking with Hands, a Northamptonshire project which is the first to ever place deaf interpreters in cinemas, ensuring those with hearing difficulties fully enjoy the magic of cinema.
YourLocalCinema.com, which provides the five million people in the UK with hearing and sight problems with information on the 180 cinemas across the UK which show subtitled and audio described movies.
Mobile Media, an unique arts project taking digital technologies to young people in the Swindon area and offering them the chance to try their hand at film, animation, digital photography and the web.
Each of the projects has an amazing story behind its Award nomination. For example, Dean Rhodes Brandon, a deaf schoolboy from the South East, set up YourLocalCinema.com after struggling to enjoy the cinema.
Until recently, few realised that over 180 cinemas across the UK screen subtitled and audio described versions of films for people with hearing and sight difficulties. YourLocalCinema.com provides a service via internet, email, talking website, web-over-phone service and a call centre to ensure people can find out when and where subtitled and audio described films are being shown. This allows people with sight and hearing problems to enjoy a social experience many people take for granted.
Dean’s father, Derek Brandon, said:
“I was exceptionally proud when my son set this project up whilst at school, and it’s great that so many cinemas have got involved to make cinema going more accessible to so many people. Now Dean and his friends are looking forward to catching all the summer blockbusters together.”
The regional and country Awards shortlist consists of four projects in each English region, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales, which have been chosen by a panel of high profile judges. The short-listed projects will go head to head in a public vote for the title of their region’s or country’s National Lottery Project of the Year.
Each of the regional or country winners will earn a place in the UK final, set to be broadcast on national television later this year. Now these inspirational film projects need your help to be in with a chance of winning.
The winning project from each of the regions will be chosen by public vote. The project with the most votes in its area will go forward to the UK final to compete against winning projects from other English regions, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
To register your vote for your favourite project log on to http://www.lotterygoodcauses.org.uk and click on National Lottery Awards. Telephone voting is also available and voting lines are open from now until 11 August 2006. Calls cost no more than 1.5p.
Since The National Lottery began in 1994, £18.5 billion has been raised for projects across the UK and over 240,000 grants have been given out across arts, sport, heritage, charities, health, education and the environment.

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