World Heritage UK’s latest workshop, ‘Commercial Best Practice in World Heritage’ took place last week in the magnificent setting of the Kew Gardens UNESCO World Heritage Site. Beating the inclement weather the week before, the participants enjoyed a bright couple of days (with the occasional shower) exploring some of the treasures this remarkable place holds. Travelling on the explorer bus through budding narcissi and spring crocus, the party of thirty delegates were transported to The Pagoda, Queen Charlotte’s Cottage and the Temperate House so see behind-the-scenes restoration work and special privilege access to areas not open to the public. Climbing three hundred steps to the top of the pagoda to meet the restoration experts and the first of the ornamental dragons being mounted there was a memorable experience. Particularly impressive was the amount of research that has taken place in order to match the original design of the architect William Chambers back in 1761, including paint analysis to achieve an accurate representation of the eighteenth century colour scheme. The group were told that this monument is the most important garden ornament in the world – quite fitting to be found in a UNESCO World Heritage Site. On to Queen Charlotte’s Cottage (like The Pagoda, managed by Historic Royal Palaces) this hidden gem is an early example of a cottage orné, a rustic thatched cottage built as a country retreat, not as a residence, and used for taking tea during walks in the gardens. A favourite place of King George III, it houses many Hogarth prints and once had a menagerie which included the first kangaroos from the colonies. Then the magnificent Temperate House which is undergoing major restoration and the works are now nearing completion with just a few weeks to go. This is a major investment into World Heritage, costing £41m and the newly painted (four coats) and glazed building is already receiving some of the 10,000 plants of 1500 species while the finishing touches to the structure are being undertaken. After a warm welcome speech from the Director at Kew Gardens, Richard Deverell, the workshop participants received expert wisdom in stimulating presentations from two of Kew’s senior staff, setting the scene for them getting engaged in three workshop groups which enabled a willing exchange of knowledge and experience between those taking part. The notes from the plenary feedback session are currently being distilled and will be available shortly. If this was not enough to fill the one and a half days spent together, everyone enjoyed the evening dinner at the nearby London Museum of Water and Steam, where the heritage engines were fired up in a magnificent demonstration of 19th century mechanical engineering. Thanks go to John Porter for setting up this arrangement. Thanks are also due to the sponsors of the event, Historic England and Lichfields, without whom this workshop would not have been realised. Cheers!
Delegates attending the World Heritage UK workshop ‘Commercial Best Practice in World Heritage’ at Kew Gardens on the 6th and 7th March will be experiencing an extra and very special treat if they come to the workshop drinks, dinner and demonstration on the evening of the 6th – we shall be dining amongst the engines at the London Museum of Water and Steam! Why not join us for the workshop? – last remaining tickets can be found at the registration page where you will also find details of the event’s programme which includes unique behind the scenes tours at Kew Gardens, workshop sessions and top class speakers.
The upcoming World Heritage UK workshop on 6th and 7th March promises to be a masterclass in commercial best practice for world heritage sites, with three senior experts from Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew sharing their expertise with those attending.
After the privilege of a behind-the-scenes tour of some of Kew’s yet-to-be-opened exhibits, delegates will hear from the head of the organisation, Chief Executive and Director of RBG Kew, Richard Deverell.
The Head of Commercial Activities at Kew Enterprises, Adam Farrar, will then talk about the ‘Evolution of Kew’s commercial strategy and major events – the difficulties, opportunities and benefits’.
This will be followed on the second day by the Director of Estates and Capital Development at Kew Gardens, Andrew Williams, who will present a particular case study on one of Kew’s most recent attractions, ‘The Hive – delivery challenges’. This fantastic opportunity to hear from such eminent presenters will provide the perfect context for the rest of the discussions which will be carried out in small groups in three workshop sessions, where participants, many experts in their own right, will share their own experiences and skills, exploring how they identify their customer markets, how they have developed their own commercial packages and how they then get on and deliver them.
Remaining tickets for this one-off event are available HERE
Remaining tickets for this event are available HERE
World Heritage UK workshop, Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew:
‘Commercial Best Practice in World Heritage’
6th and 7th March 2018
Tuesday 6th March
09.00 to 12.00/13.00 – Special ‘Under the skin’ tours
Restricted numbers are able to visit the Pagoda restoration project and delegates will be among of the first people to see the dragons and the amazing colour scheme. This is a Historic Royal Palaces project and would be led by one of their conservation team or the lead project manager. The location will still be a construction site so time will be needed to change into Personal Protection Equipment.
Also included is a tour of the refurbished Temperate House which is the largest remaining glass house in the world. This will also be a construction site at the time of the visit. The party will be split into two groups visiting both sites in turn.
13.00 to 14.00 Lunch (Cambridge Cottage)
14.00 to 14.15 ‘Welcome to Kew’, Richard Deverell, CEO and Director of RBG Kew
14.15 to 14.45 Lead presentation: ‘Evolution of Kew’s commercial strategy and major events – the difficulties, opportunities and benefits’, Adam Farrar, Head of Commercial Activities, Kew Enterprises
14.45 to 15.45 Workshop 1 ‘Understanding the market’
In this workshop we shall explore in small groups what your ‘market’ is and how you have undergone identifying it. Please be prepared to share the methods have you used and what results you have achieved if you have them.
15.45 to 1600 Tea/coffee break
1600 to 1700 Workshop 2 ‘How to develop your package’
In this workshop we shall examine how the activities explored in workshop 1 have helped you to develop your offer and ask what your package now looks like? Please be prepared to share your experience and the results you have achieved if you have them.
1700 to 1715 Commercial context from the UK World Heritage Site Review – Chris Blandford
1715 to 1745 Elevator pitch style presentations from World Heritage Sites
1745 to 1900 Free time
19.00 Meet in Richmond – Dinner (venue to be confirmed)
Wednesday 7th March
9.00 to 10.00 Kew site tour by Explorer Bus – whole site tour and back of house nursery visit
10.00 to 10.30 Tea/Coffee break
10.30 to 10.50 Lead presentation: ‘The Hive – delivery challenges’, Andrew Williams Director of Estates and Capital Development , Kew Gardens
10.50 to 11.50 Workshop session 3 – ‘How to deliver commercially’
In this workshop we shall consider how you make sure your offer is commercially sound and what you have learnt from the process (positive and negative). Please be prepared to share the methods have you used and what results you have achieved if you have them.
11.50 to 12.30 Questions and general discussion
12.30 to 13.30 Lunch
13.30 to 1430 Feedback presentations from the four workshop groups
1430 to 1500 Summary of learning, next actions