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Ceòlas Uibhist is appealing for local votes as it strives for nationwide acclaim on BBC One in this year’s National Lottery Awards.

The project beat off stiff competition from over 600 organisations to reach the public voting stage in this year’s National Lottery Awards – the annual search for the UK’s favourite Lottery-funded projects.

South Uist-based Ceòlas is competing against six other projects to be crowned the winner of the Heritage category.

Winners of the seven National Lottery Awards categories will each get a £3,000 cash prize to spend on their project, an iconic National Lottery Awards trophy and attend a star-studded glittering Awards ceremony in London, broadcast on BBC One in September.

Ceòlas Uibhist is an annual week-long music and dance school which preserves and celebrates Gaelic heritage in South Uist.

The event marks its 20th anniversary this year and the charity behind it has grown into one of Scotland’s leading cultural, heritage and arts groups.

Iain MacDonald, Artistic Director of Ceòlas Uibhist, says winning the prestigious National Lottery Award and having their work showcased on national television would be an honour.

He says: “We’re delighted to have reached the finals of The National Lottery Awards.

“Lottery money has really helped us to run our Summer School each July.

“It’s easy to vote, so we’re hoping people support us, as it would be a fantastic reward for everyone involved in the project to receive national recognition for their hard work.”

TV star and actor John Barrowman will be presenting the National Lottery Awards for the sixth time this year.

He says: “The National Lottery Awards are a great way to shine a spotlight on outstanding Lottery-funded projects.

“Now in their 13th year, the Awards celebrate the talent and dedication of the amazing staff and volunteers that run incredible life changing Lottery-funded projects for the benefit of their communities and the people who live in them.

“Your local project has worked very hard to become a finalist and they now need your support because the project with the most votes in each category will be crowned the winner.

“Projects receive funding thanks to National Lottery players who raise £36 million every single week for Good Causes across the UK such as Ceòlas Uibhist.”

To vote for Ceòlas Uibhist, please go to or telephone 0844 836 9676 and follow the campaign on twitter: hashtag #NLAwards.

Voting runs until midnight on Wednesday 20 July.

There are seven projects competing for votes across seven categories, reflecting the main areas of National Lottery funding: arts, sport, heritage, health, environment, education and voluntary/charity.