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Architectural feature lighting grants

We are offering grants of up to £30,000, to owners and occupiers of Leicester buildings of architectural merit, who wish to install architectural feature lighting to improve our city.

The programme has a budget of £200,000, and each applicant can apply for up to a maximum of £30,000 on a 50% match funding basis.

The scheme is aimed at owners and occupiers of buildings that are of architectural merit in the City, an investment is being particularly encouraged in the following zones:

  • St Georges Cultural Quarter
  • The Old Town
  • The Lanes/St Martins
  • Town Hall Square through to, and including Market Square
  • The wider City Centre area

The objectives of the scheme are as follows:

  • To create inviting, atmospheric spaces after dark;
  • to denote arrival into the city;
  • to celebrate Leicester’s built heritage;
  • to heighten the appeal of visitor attractions, and;
  • to aid pedestrian orientation; particularly between heritage and retail areas.

Please see the attachments at the bottom of this page for more information on the scheme, application forms and terms and conditions of acceptance.


How do I apply for a portion of the available grant?

The application process includes two stages to approve the funding:

  1. To apply for Architectural Feature Lighting grant funding, you must first submit an Expression of Interest. This will be reviewed by a panel and if successful, you will be asked to complete a full application form.
  2. The full application form should be submitted with two quotes and designs of what the final scheme will look like. Please note that the onus lies with the applicant to organise the production of the designs of the scheme and a lighting designer should be used to produce these. Once the full application, quotes and designs have been submitted, the panel will review these and decide if your application has been successful and therefore awarded the grant.

Both the Expression of Interest and Full Application should be sent via email to

If my application is successful, how much grant am I eligible for?

The programme has a budget of £200,000, each applicant can apply for a maximum of £30,000. The amount of grant given to the applicant will be determined by the quote approved by the panel and any amount approved by the panel must be matched on a 50% basis by the applicant.

For example, if the scheme in its entirety will cost £40,000, the Council will contribute £20,000 in grant towards the scheme and the applicant must also match this by contributing £20,000.

I am spending money on works to other aspects of the building, does this work contribute towards match funding?

If the applicant is carrying out additional works to improve the aesthetics of their premises, then it may be possible for the additional works to constitute match-funding.

What should the final lighting scheme look like?

As above, the final scheme should be designed by the applicant using a lighting designer and should highlight the key architectural features of the building. Examples of the type of work that may be eligible include:

  • Illumination of selected; architectural and sculptural features
  • Ground-based floor lighting on buildings
  • Dynamic lighting/projected images onto buildings
  • Cross-lighting, up-lighting and back lighting on buildings
  • Lighting of public realm space

Please note that these are indicative examples and not exhaustive of what your lighting scheme could include.

Do I need to apply for planning permission?

Due to the nature of the works, it may be that your project requires planning permission or listed building consent. We would advise that you contact the Planning Department to find out if these applications need to be completed for your scheme. If planning permission or listed building consent is required, an application should be completed and submitted by the applicant following the full application being approved and awarded by the panel. Please note if the Council ask for a planning application and/or listed building consent, it can take up to 8 weeks to process and no works should commence until permission has been granted.

To discuss this further and for information regarding planning lighting regulations, please contact

Does it matter if I leasehold the property?

No, it does not. However, you must have written permission from the freeholder which must be provided to the Council.

What happens once the lighting is installed?

Once the lighting is installed, a Council lighting officer will review the lighting to check that it meets the agreed standards and design. If the scheme meets the agreed design, the applicant will be asked to complete a payment request form for the agreed grant amount (50% of the overall quote) and will be paid in arrears. Following payment, the lighting must be maintained and supplied by the applicant from a metered source.  This will not be funded by the Council.

Contact us

Write to us: Development Team, Leicester City Council, 1st Floor Rutland Wing, City Hall, 115 Charles Street, Leicester, LE1 1FZ

Email us: