Essential information

The information in this section should be read in conjunction with our Standard Conditions of Grant, which contain the standard terms to which all awards are subject.

We reserve the right to make awards subject to further terms and conditions on a case-by-case basis.

Award activation

Awards may only be activated after we have received the Grant Acceptance Form and satisfactory written acceptance of the terms upon which they are made.

1. Subject (field of research)

Basic or applied clinical research relevant to the cardiovascular system. Collaborative research between clinicians and basic scientists is encouraged.

2. Principal investigator - applicant and co-applicant(s)

Unless applied for in the application, the salaries of the principal investigator and co-applicants must be guaranteed during the term of the grant.. There must be one principal investigator only, employed at a UK research institution, who will be held responsible for managing the grant, both scientifically and financially, and will be our point of contact.

Co-applicants are expected to make a significant contribution to the proposed research, providing expertise or skills not otherwise available to the PI. Their role(s) should be stated clearly in the application and they would usually be expected to contribute an effort of at least 5%.

3. Administering an award

The principal investigator is responsible for the administration of the grant on behalf of the host institution, and the host institution must be an academic research institution (not an NHS trust). Where two or more institutions are involved, the host institution has responsibility for the administration of the grant on behalf of the other centres.

4. Salaries

Salaries for research staff should be calculated on current nationally agreed pay scales. Institutions operating local pay scales should supply a copy. We will cover the employer's costs (i.e. basic salary, national insurance, superannuation and, if applicable, London allowance), and single annual increments to the top of the scale. We will honour nationally agreed cost of living increases only. A provision should not be included for these. Senior researchers (at least 3 years post-doctoral) and medically qualified staff should be named. Support for PhD students (clinical or non-clinical; full or part-time) may not be applied for on any grant other than a training fellowship or non-clinical PhD studentship. Advertising and interviewing costs will not be met by us.

Salaries for researchers wishing to work part-time may be included on Project Grants and Programme Grants. Part-time researchers may also apply for fellowships, providing they meet the criteria for the fellowship and can remain internationally research competitive.

See guidance on costing salaries and stipends.

5. Stipends for PhD students (non-clinical)

Stipends are set by us and are listed separately. University tuition fees (UK rate) may be applied for, but no other allowances. Support for PhD Students may not be applied for on any other grants.

See guidance on costing salaries and stipends.

6. Consumables

Applicants may apply for funding to cover research consumables such as reagents, materials, animals and animal feed etc. A detailed breakdown of the amount requested with a written justification should be supplied. We will only cover direct research costs and will not reimburse for university or research institution overheads and infrastructure costs (e.g. heating, lighting, institute staff, advertising, secretarial, office expenses, library and publication charges etc). An exception can be made for secretarial assistance and office costs for epidemiological studies.

7. Equipment

Items of equipment may be included in an application if specifically required for the project. Details required are: type of equipment, specification, preferred manufacturer and supplier, cost per item. A written justification should also be provided. Costs may include delivery but should exclude VAT (unless the item is non-exempt), installation, maintenance and insurance. Applicants should ensure that the host institution has agreed to be responsible for these costs at their own expense.

8. Travel to conferences and scientific meetings

Costs should not be included in grant applications. Travel funds to present at or attend scientific meetings relevant to the grant will be provided with the award if eligible. 

9. Supplementary funding

Supplementary funding following an award is not normally permitted. It is important, therefore, to provide accurate costings when applying for funding.

10. Deferred applications

BHF accepts no responsibility for interim funding as a consequence of delays however caused.

11. Curricula vitae of applicants and research staff

Brief CVs should be submitted where required. These should not exceed two sides of A4 and as a minimum must include the following information:

  • Full name, age, date of birth and nationality
  • Degrees, diplomas etc (subject class, university, dates)
  • Current post and source of funding (e.g. HEFC/other, with dates)
  • Current basic salary (if salary is being requested from us)
  • Career history (with dates)
  • Recent relevant publications (full papers, list abstracts separately).
Full CVs where requested should be more detailed to include prizes, awards, a complete career history, career intentions, and a list of peer reviewed papers with abstracts listed separately.

12. Lay summaries

The summaries should be written in a non-technical style for use in publicity material. They should explain clearly the problem being addressed, the aims and expected benefits of the research project in terms understood by the general public. Please read Lay summaries for further guidance.

13. Ethical approval

A research proposal involving investigations using healthy volunteers, patients or patient material will require ethical approval from the Local Research Ethics Committee (or Multi-centre Research Ethics Committee, where five or more centres are involved in the research). The relevant questions on human details must be completed on the online application form. An awarded grant may not begin without full ethical approval, a copy of which must be forwarded to us in advance. For paper applications, our questionnaire on the involvement of human subjects (Form EXH) must be completed and enclosed with the application.

14. Use of animals

Applicants must be familiar with and apply the principles for reduction, refinement and replacement of use of animals laid out in the NC3Rs guidance and adherence to these principles will be a Condition of Award.

The relevant questions on research involving animals must be completed on the online application form. For any paper grant applications where animals will be used, Form EXA must be completed and enclosed with the application.

The form asks for power calculations. Applicants must provide sufficient information for reviewers to be able to check these calculations. This includes estimation of the standard deviation of the dataset being collected, the degree of change expected, the statistical test to be used, and the level of power. If the experimental design relies on the replicate use of single cells or cell cultures from each animal, the numbers of replicates and animals must be given.

15. Intellectual property rights and commercial exploitation

Applicants must state whether or not the work arising from a BHF award is likely to lead to commercial exploitation. We encourage this to try and ensure that research findings are translated swiftly into patient benefit. For further information, refer to our Standard Conditions of Grant.

16. Consultancies, third party relationships and arrangements

Applicants and the institution need to review all existing consultancies and third party arrangements to check for compliance with our Standard Conditions of Grant prior to application and prior to acceptance of any award.

17. Current grants

Applicants should list current research awards from both the BHF and other funding organisations giving the award reference number, title, sum awarded and end date.

18. Overlap with existing projects

Applicants need to explain how this application differs (i.e. does not overlap) scientifically or financially with other current grants of whatever source. It is not sufficient to simply state “no overlap”.

19. Continuation and subsequent grants

An application for renewed funding must include a final report detailing the aims and achievements of the previous grant with a list of publications arising from that award.

20. Re-submitted applications

If an application is being re-submitted having been rejected by us, in whole or in part, by the same or a different committee, this must be made clear and previous feedback should be included with an explanation of how the application has been changed in response to it. Unidentified re-submissions risk automatic rejection.

21. Closing dates for applications

There are no closing dates. Please submit the application when it is ready. Please refer to the specific grant guidelines for advice on when results will be available as this varies depending on the type of application. Sometimes applications are deferred for further information.

22. Number of paper copies of applications

Personal Chair, Infrastructure and Strategic Initiative grants only:

For paper grant applications for Personal ChairInfrastructure and Strategic Initiative grants, the number of copies required is stated on the relevant application form and also in the specific grant guidelines. No paper copies are required for online grant applications.

23. Reviewers

Applicants may supply names with full contact details of suitable reviewers; these may or may not be used. Applicants may also name those they consider to have a conflict of interest with their application.

For paper grant applications for Personal Chair, Infrastructure and Strategic Initiative grants, this information should be supplied with the application in an envelope marked ‘Confidential'.