The funding will strengthen the work already being put in place by the Hull 2017 team to develop skills and demonstrate the city as a significant centre of culture.
Winning the City of Culture could boost the local economy for the city, bringing in financial support, the creation of jobs and increasing the city’s tourism.
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey said: This funding will help ensure that Hull's year as City of Culture 2017 will be engaging and exciting, bringing people together and putting on fantastic events at some of the city's most well-loved locations."
Sir Peter Luff, chair of HLF, added: “We’re proud to be supporting this year-long cultural event and look forward to working closely with the City of Culture team as they develop their programming ideas.
“The Heritage Lottery Fund’s involvement is thanks to National Lottery players and we hope that our £3m investment will help make a positive impact on Hull’s public profile and economic wellbeing.”
The funding will also enable the city’s museums, archives, libraries and heritage learning service to host an ambitious programme of events for 2017 and create long-term benefits for residents.
Cllr Terry Geraghty, portfolio holder for culture and leisure, and chair of Hull Culture & Leisure commented: “This investment is great news, acknowledging the significant role the city’s museums and libraries can play in 2017 and beyond.
“This is a real boost to help existing and emerging projects, all of which contribute to Hull’s creative and cultural offer.
“It will also help us build on what is already on offer and look at new ways of engaging people – irrespective of their backgrounds – in our activities throughout our popular libraries and museums."