A NUMBER of worthy causes became winners last year when the National Lottery invested more than £1.3 million across Wychavon.

During 2013 a total of 32 grants were awarded in the district, providing a vital cash boost to local arts, sport and heritage and community groups helping the area’s most vulnerable people.

One of the lucky recipients was Gloverspiece Minifarm Limited in Droitwich, who were given £10,000 to install electricity cables that will supply power to their care farm which is used to develop people living with mental ill health and complex needs.

Actor John Barrowman, presenter of last year’s National Lottery Awards show, said: “National Lottery players raise £33 million every week for a wide range of projects which make a life changing difference to local communities.

"The awards are a great way of celebrating their work and the unsung heroes helping people with National Lottery funding."

He added everyone in the district who buys a ticket or scratch card had done their bit to help the worthy causes.

“Everyone in Wychavon who plays the National Lottery should be proud of the difference their money is making in the local community. If you know of a lottery-funded organisation that deserves to be nominated, we want to hear from you.”

Worcestershire Wildlife Trust also received £8,626 to upgrade the pathways in their gardens and to install raised beds for wheelchair users and improve the facilities so they are accessible to a wider range of people.

Pebworth First School, near Evesham, was granted £8,632 to provide a new creative play area for children and the community, creating a safe facility for the youngsters.

These projects, and any organisation which has received lottery funding, have a chance to gain national recognition for their work as the National Lottery Awards 2014 open for entries.

The awards have seven categories, with each reflecting an area of lottery funding: sport, heritage, arts, environment, health, education and voluntary/charity.

The winners of the awards will receive a £2,000 cash prize and national recognition at a star-studded event broadcast on BBC One later this year.

Since the National Lottery began in 1994, lottery players have helped raise more than £31 billion for good causes and more than 420,00 grants have been awarded across the UK For more information and to vote for a project by midnight on Wednesday, March 12, go to nationallotteryawards.org.uk or call 0207 293 3599.