Waters and Wonder at City of Bath World Heritage Day!

30th Anniversary, Arts, Bath 2017, Celebration, Events, News, Performance, Uncategorized, UNESCO, world heritage day, World Heritage Sites

Drawing the windows on Pulteney BridgeBath’s annual celebration of International World Heritage Day took place on Sunday 23 April in the sunshine at a beautifully blooming Parade Gardens.

The ‘Waters of Bath’ was the theme for the day and free activities exploring the history and use of Bath’s hot springs, canal network and River Avon were enjoyed by over 1400 visitors of all ages.

View of standsThe gardens came alive with the sound of music courtesy of Bath Spa Band and Bath City Jubilee Waits, who also accompanied the Widcombe Mummers in their colourful ‘St George and the Dragon’ play to mark St George’s Day.

Special guided walks are an ever popular feature of the annual event.  Various routes and subjects were covered, from the history and features of Parade Gardens to waterside tours.  These were led by the Mayor’s Honorary Guides, Cleveland Pools Trust and the National Trust.

This year, for the first time, World Heritage Day featured a programme of mini talks.  These focused on the history of Bath’s waters as well as updates from projects and initiatives across the World Heritage City including Bath Abbey Footprint, the Bathscape landscape partnership, Bath Medical Museum and the restoration of Cleveland Pools.

A record-breaking number of heritage displays and activity stands were present on the day offering opportunities to find out more about local canals, river safety, Bath’s best green views, Lottery-funded projects and heritage initiatives.  Location knowledge was tested with the ‘Great Spas of Europe’ picture quiz and flags were added to a giant world map to show the far-flung World Heritage Sites people had visited.  Visitors were treated to the Bath Record Office Roadshow and the chance to see real objects associated with the spa from the Roman Baths collection.  They even got to meet Paralympic champion swimmer Stephanie Millward and try on her medals at the Cleveland Pools stall!  It was wonderful to bring together so many (27!) of the City’s key heritage organisations, who enjoyed catching up with each other as well as enthusing visitors.

World Heritage Sites world mapsThere were lots of family-friendly activities to keep younger visitors entertained including craft activities, World Heritage dominoes, historic maps, colouring competitions and a bookmark stamp trail.  Special mention must be made of the amazing Pulteney Bridge model-building activities offered by Bath Preservation Trust. Robert Adam, the original Georgian architect, was wandering round the site all day and was most impressed with the efforts of budding designers and engineers.  He also posed for many selfies with his physician in tow in front of his world-famous bridge.

Robert Adam and his PhysicianAll in all the day was a great way to kick off the 30th anniversary celebrations of Bath becoming a World Heritage Site.  Watch this space for a series of special talks in the Autumn as we continue to celebrate this milestone.

Planning Inspector supports WHS setting

Bath 2017, Conservation, Management Plan, News, Planning, Uncategorized, UNESCO, Workshop, World Heritage Sites

BATH SKYLINE FROM ZION HILLThe green setting of Bath is a key attribute of Outstanding Universal Value

Following the World Heritage UK Technical Seminar on planning and World Heritage on 8th March, you may be interested in this recent (18 April 2017) appeal decision from Bath. In dismissing the appeal for 20 dwellings within the WHS, the inspector was convinced by the Council’s policy documents including the WHS Management Plan and the need to protect open hillsides as part of the OUV. We know from discussion in the technical seminar that comparable examples from different sites are considered useful and this example also provides some validation of Bath’s ‘Setting Study’ approach, another hot topic!  The decision can be found here. Please feel free to contact tony_crouch@bathnes.gov.uk for any further detail. 

‘Running the Business of World Heritage’ – WHUK Networking & General Meeting 4th and 5th July 2017

Business, Events, Exhibition, Network meetings, News, training, Uncategorized, UNESCO, Workshop, World Heritage Sites

punlm211008001_o1 CropFollowing on from the success of last year’s World Heritage UK Networking Meeting at the Giant’s Causeway WHS, this year we move to Scotland and the unique and successful New Lanark WHS where we plan to share our experiences on ‘running the business of World Heritage’. So, a commercial theme this year and this is appropriate as the operation at New Lanark is an exemplar. There will be opportunities to learn from each other as we hear from world heritage colleagues on their experiences of business plans and strategies, innovative enterprises and products, hospitality and customer satisfaction and the interpretation of the offer that each World Heritage Site provides to sustain it as a viable and sustainable business. The event will also include a World Heritage UK General Meeting to meet the governance requirements of the charity.

The meeting will take place in the Bonnington Linn Conference Room at the New Lanark Mill Hotel on the 4th and 5th July where a limited amount of accommodation has been reserved for delegates. Booking is urgently required to secure any of the following: 5 bedrooms reserved in the New Lanark Mill Hotel (these are Bed and Breakfast) @£89.00 per night based on two sharing or @£65.00 per night for single occupancy.

17 bedrooms in the Wee Row Hostel (bedroom only but breakfast available separately) @£55.00 based on 2 sharing or £40.00 for single occupancy.

Delegates wishing to book this accommodation MUST either phone 01555 667200 or e-mail hotel @newlanark.org and reference ‘Masters allocation’ for their booking to be made at these rates. Bookings cannot be made online. See http://www.newlanarkhotel.co.uk/ or call 01555 667200 for more details.

The Eventbrite webpage for registration to this event is ready for your sign up HERE

The draft programme is in preparation but so far includes:

  • speakers and presentations from the UK’s World Heritage Sites
  • the World Heritage UK General Meeting
  • an evening reception with New Lanark WHS staff and Partnership Board, with a presentation by the New Lanark Chief Executive on access and new development
  • a 3-course networking dinner (optional) @£23.95
  • 5 specialised tours of the WHS – on architecture, power, textiles, social history and the general story of New Lanark

Technical Workshop: Planning for World Heritage Sites – dovetail or disconnect? Bath, 8th March 2017

Bath 2017, Education, Events, News, Planning, training, Uncategorized, UNESCO, Workshop, World Heritage Sites

THE LATEST IN A SERIES OF TECHNICAL WORKSHOPS ON PLANNING, PRODUCED BY WORLD HERITAGE UK:

bath-credit-martin-pettitt

Tickets for this technical workshop are now available  HERE

DRAFT PROGRAMME FOR 8TH MARCH 2017

Planning for World Heritage Sites – dovetail or disconnect?

MORNING SESSION – HOW DO THE UK’s PLANNING SYSTEMS WORK?

10.00 Introduction

10.15 Overview of the planning systems (England, Scotland, Wales, Northern Ireland), to include:

  • planning policy and development management
  • who makes decisions about what
  • the underlying philosophy of the planning approach to development

10.30 Planning policy at national and local levels, to include, for each level:

  • why planning policies are important for World Heritage
  • where to find planning policies on World Heritage
  • what policies exist already?
  • can policies be totally prescriptive?
  • who makes policies – the roles of civil servants/local authority officers and ministers/elected local authority members
  • how to influence decision makers

11.00 Questions

11.10 Coffee

11.25 How decisions on development proposals are made, to include:

  • o   Who makes decisions – the roles of local authority officers and members, central government inspectors and        ministers
  • o   How decisions are made
  • o   What planners need to know when making decisions
  • o   How to influence decision makers
  • o   Heritage impact Assessment
  • o   OUV and “significance” – lessons from the Chacewater, Cornwall appeal decision

12.10 Decisions that threaten World Heritage Status, to include:

  • the role of the State Party
  • which Government departments do what
  • who advises the World Heritage Committee?
  • the role of ICOMOS
  • how is the decision for Reactive Monitoring made?
  • what is the process of Reactive Monitoring?

12.40 Questions

1.00     Lunch and group photo

AFTERNOON SESSION – WORKSHOP SESSIONS TO IDENTIFY ISSUES AND IMPROVEMENTS NEEDED

The aim of the afternoon session is to identify what is going well and what needs to be improved and is everyone’s opportunity to have their say. It will be split into two parts, first looking at national issues and then local government issues, and to hear about some specific examples.

1.30     Introduction

1.40     National and international issues

Possible issues to discuss

  • are the overall planning systems fit for purpose in relation to World Heritage?
  • is anyone monitoring the effectiveness of the planning systems?
  • are national policies sufficiently robust?
  • are World Heritage Sites sufficiently valued?
  • how can state reporting and the Reactive monitoring process be improved?

2.40     Local issues

Possible issues to discuss:

  • is anyone monitoring the effectiveness of the planning systems?
  • are local policies sufficiently robust?
  • are World Heritage Sites sufficiently valued?

3.40     Summing up and closing remarks, to include:

  • summary of gaps/suggestions from workshop sessions
  • next steps, including production of a position paper

4.00     Close and depart

Seasonal message from Sam Rose

News, Uncategorized, UNESCO, World Heritage Sites

sam rose 2015Dear World Heritage UK members and supporters

This has been the first full year for World Heritage UK and I think we can safely say that it has been busy and successful.  January kicked the year’s events off with an excellent Technical Meeting on Management Planning in Edinburgh.  Not only did it include a useful set of presentations and workshop sessions, but the Burns Night supper went down very well, and some people even braved the torrential rain for a short field trip on the Tuesday morning.   Our thanks go to our outstanding hosts, Historic Environment Scotland.

This was followed by an excellent one-day seminar at the Tower of London in collaboration with ALVA about challenges and opportunities facing World Heritage; highlighting perhaps the degree with which we as World Heritage Sites would benefit from collaborating across the sector.

June brought the first summer Networking Meeting, hosted superbly by the National Trust at Giant’s Causeway.  The mixture of field trip, evening meal, general meeting and presentations worked well, and it was a pleasure to see another of the UK’s natural sites.

Caernarfon was the venue for the second annual World Heritage UK conference in October, which, from all the feedback, was every bit as good as the first one in Saltaire.  The mixture of case studies, high-profile speakers (young and old), field trips and an evening reception at Penrhyn Castle made for a very popular and useful event.  We are particularly grateful to Cadw for their support for this event, and also to Gwynedd Council and the National Trust.  We will be looking to maintain the high standard next autumn at Ironbridge – dates to be confirmed shortly in the new year.

Finally, in collaboration with the Institute of Fundraising and their Giving to Heritage scheme, we held the first of what we hope to be an ongoing set of training events in subjects that you say you need support  – in this case fundraising.  This was followed for some people by a House of Lords reception to celebrate 30 years of World Heritage Sites in the UK.  World Heritage UK were identified as a key partner by Historic England, and it was a useful event for profile raising.

In terms of profile and advocacy, we have managed to get ourselves around some ‘important desks’, including that of the new Secretary of State, Karen Bradley, in respect of ‘post-Brexit’ issues. We produced a useful paper in that respect which is available on our website.  Locally,  World Heritage Sites have, as ever, been promoting the values and importance of World Heritage, particularly those seven that were given the status some 30 years ago.

There are many more things I could say but I won’t bore you any further – it is Christmas after all – apart from to say that I hope we are doing what you, as members, need.  This is your organisation, you are the members, so please do let us know what you think.

As for next year, we are confirming the programme for the year which will start with a Technical Meeting about World Heritage and Planning in Bath on March 8th.   We will also be looking to join Sites up better around 2017 World Heritage Day (April 18th), and hopefully make a bit of splash about it.  More details will follow as we get into the new year. 

Finally, if you are not a member and would like to be, or knows someone/an organisation who would, please get in touch with Chris on chris.mahon@worldheritageuk.org.  It is important to build our membership, after all, World Heritage is for Life, not just for Christmas.

 Have a really great festive season, and all of the very best for 2017

Very best wishes

Sam Rose and the Board of Trustees

World Heritage UK

Save-the-date: Planning Technical Workshop 8th March 2017

Education, Events, Network meetings, News, Opportunities, training, Uncategorized, UNESCO

Save-the-date  Planning Technical Workshop

We are pleased to announce the date and location of the next World Heritage UK Technical Workshop, which as a result of Member feedback, will explore further issues around Planning and World Heritage Sites.

Save the date:

Date: Wednesday 8th March 2017 (evening networking social event on the 7th likely)

Venue: Bath Cricket Club (website here)

Bath Cricket Club is located at the recreational heart of the City of Bath World Heritage Site, with spectacular views across the ground taking in the spires of Bath Abbey and St Johns Church to the city and beyond. The club is 5 minutes from both Bath Spa railway station and the newly re-refurbished bus stations with car parking alongside the clubhouse.

Further details on the programme, tickets, accommodation etc. to follow.

We look forward to seeing you there.

Tony Crouch, Don Gobbett and Chris Mahon

World Heritage UK Technical Workshop Team

Parliamentary Reception for World Heritage

30th Anniversary, Advocacy, Celebration, Events, News, Uncategorized, UNESCO, World Heritage Sites

Celebrating 30 years of World Heritage in the UK

Guest blog by Henry Owen-John, Head of International Advice, Historic England

On November 29th Historic England, in partnership with WHUK and others, organised a parliamentary reception to celebrate the 30th anniversary of the UK’s first World Heritage Sites. At the event hosted by Historic England Commissioner Baroness Lola Young of Hornsey on the terrace of the House of Lords, the Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport, Karen Bradley, spoke of her own enthusiasm for some of the UK’s WHSs that she had visited with her family. She also drew attention to figures just published in Heritage Counts https://content.historicengland.org.uk/images-books/publications/heritage-and-the-economy/heritage-and-the-economy-2016.pdf/ that show that 40 million people, participate in heritage – almost 75% of the population. The Secretary of State praised the work done by all those involved in the management and promotion of the UK’s WHSs.

Baroness Lola Young and Secretary of State Karen Bradley (all images copyright Historic England)

40 MPs and 20 members of the Upper House were present together with 150 people from across the heritage sector in the UK to hear Sir Laurie Magnus the Chair of Historic England and Duncan Wilson talk passionately about WHSs and what they mean to communities across the world. Duncan suggested that the words of Croatian writer, Slavenka Drakuliç, on what the destruction of the bridge at Mostar meant to her, epitomised everyone’s passion for outstanding heritage: ‘We expect people to die; we count on our own lives to end. The destruction of a monument to civilisation is something else. The bridge in all its beauty and grace, was built to outlive us; it was an attempt to grasp eternity. It transcended our individual destiny. A dead woman is one of us. But the bridge is all of us forever.’ The backdrop to these words was an image of a joyous celebration of the reconstructed bridge at Mostar.

Sir Laurie Magnus and Duncan Wilson, the Chair and CEO of Historic England

Historic England advises government on meeting the UK’s obligations under the terms of the World Heritage Convention and works closely with World Heritage UK in promoting good practice in the management and presentation of our WHSs and championing their value, not only as places of outstanding universal value, but also as drivers for economic, environmental and social benefit. Duncan Wilson said that while in other parts of the world there were threats from armed conflict and natural disaster, in the UK we had our own challenges in protecting some of our WHSs from over development. However, he also made clear that in the 30 WHS in the UK and its overseas territories we have many examples of good practice which is widely respected on the world stage.

During the event a short video was shown which captured the essence of many of the UK’s WHSs and put over some key messages about the value of world heritage. The video can be seen at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VhidUvtRR-M&t=15s

Gorham’s Cave Complex is UK’s 30th World Heritage Site

30th Anniversary, Awards, Celebration, Events, Gorham's Cave Complex, News, UK Overseas Territories, Uncategorized, UNESCO, World Heritage Sites

Amidst the current turbulence of Turkey’s political crisis, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee has agreed to the inscription of the Gorham’s Cave Complex at its meeting in Istanbul yesterday. In the year that celebrates the 30th anniversary of the first World Heritage Sites for the UK, we can now rejoice on achieving its 30th World Heritage Site in as many years. Congratulations to all concerned on this success and best wishes for a safe return home.

_77321675_gorham'scave(left)

The Gorham’s Cave Complex is the last known site of Neanderthal survival, around 28,000 years ago, in the world; it provides one of the most detailed sequences in southern Europe, combining evidence of climate, sea-level and ecological change, of the critical period leading to the Last Glacial Maximum;  It contains a rich archive of plant and animal fossil material allowing a detailed reconstruction of ecological change and the subsistence ecology of Neanderthals.  The material from the excavations includes the largest collection of fossil bird species from this period anywhere in Europe.  This Complex also provides an insight into the arrival of Modern Humans to their last European outpost. The presence of Solutrean parietal and mobile art adds to the site’s significance.

‘Why World Heritage Matters’ conference tickets now bookable

30th Anniversary, Conference, Conference Caernarfon October 2016, Events, News, UNESCO, World Heritage Sites

The second annual conference of World Heritage UK, will have a unique Welsh flavour. Strong connections to the Castles and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd World Heritage Site and to the Slate Industry of North Wales Tentative List site, together with a topical theme of ‘Why World Heritage Matters’, provide a backdrop to the stage where we will explore the economic and social engagement challenges with World Heritage.

You can now get your tickets for the World Heritage UK conference HERE Don’t forget, there are discounts for all World Heritage UK Member categories so join up before you buy to take advantage of these offers.

SCX-EQ50-1213-0207-A4

Exterior view of the Castle from across the Seiont Caernarfon Castle Cadw Sites World Heritage Sites SAMN: CN079 NGR: SH477626 Gwynedd North Castles Medieval Defence Historic Sites

Keynote speakers from political, funding, policy and best practice contexts; dynamic workshop sessions; engaging visits to the three other locations comprising the site and tentative list locations; updates from WHS from all around the UK and plenty of opportunity for questions, networking and ‘hwyl’ with fellow delegates.

The event is supported by the Historic Environment Service (Cadw), Welsh Government.

Mi fydd gan ail gynhadledd flynyddol WH:UK flas Cymreig unigryw eleni. Gyda chysylltiadau cryf â Safle Treftadaeth y Byd – Cestyll a Muriau Trefi  Edward 1 yng Gwynedd, a’r ffaith fod  ardaloedd Diwydiant  Llechi  Gogledd Cymru ar restr posib Safle Treftadaeth y Byd, ynghyd â thema amserol o ‘Pam fod Treftadaeth Y Byd o bwys?’, mae’n gosod y cefndir a’r cyd- destun i ystyried yr heriau economaidd ac  ymgysylltu cymdeithasol sy’n gysylltiedig â Threftadaeth y Byd.

Fe fydd y prif siaradwyr o gefndiroedd gwleidyddol, cyllid, polisi ac arfer gorau; sesiynau gweithdy deinamig; ymweliadau i dri o’r safleoedd sydd ar y rhestr posib; diweddariad gan safleoedd o bob rhan o’r DU a digon o gyfle ar gyfer cwestiynau, rhwydweithio a ‘hwyl’ gyda chyd-gynrychiolwyr.

Mae’r digwyddiad yn cael ei gefnogi gan y Gwasanaeth Amgylchedd Hanesyddol (Cadw), Llywodraeth Cymru.

WHEN Monday, 10 October 2016 at 09:00 – Tuesday, 11 October 2016 at 15:00 (BST)                WHERE GALERI Caernarfon – Doc Victoria, Caernarfon, LL55 1SQ

Management Plan Review for Edinburgh WHS

consultation, Management Plan, News, Opportunities, Publications, Uncategorized, UNESCO, World Heritage Sites

Old and New Towns of Edinburgh

It’s time to review the Management Plan for the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh World Heritage Site. 

This is your chance to get involved… https://consultationhub.edinburgh.gov.uk/sfc/edinburgh-oldandnewtowns-managementplan-review 

over 170 responses so far and here’s what people think:  https://planningedinburgh.com/2016/07/05/old-and-new-towns-of-edinburgh-world-heritage-site/

More information at: https://planningedinburgh.com/category/world-heritage/

Contact: worldheritage@edinburgh.gov.uk