Parliamentary reception marks 30 years of world heritage in the UK
Icon CEO joins MPs and heritage professionals to celebrate 30th anniversary of UK's first World Heritage Sites
From Stonehenge to Saltaire, the UK is home to some of the world's most precious World Heritage Sites – 30 of them in fact, the earliest of which were added to UNESCO’s list in 1986.
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of the UK's entry on the list, Historic England and World Heritage UK held a parliamentary reception at the House of Lords on 29th November, hosted by Historic England Commissioner, Baroness Lola Young.
Icon CEO Alison Richmond attended the event along with 40 MPs, 20 members of the Upper House and a number of professionals from across the heritage sector.
Karen Bradley, Secretary of State for Culture Media and Sport, shared her enthusiasm for World Heritage Sites in the UK and highlighted findings from Heritage Counts 2016, in particular that 40 million people in the UK participate in heritage – almost 75% of the population.
Sir Laurie Magnus, Chair of Historic England, and Duncan Wilson, Chief Executive, also addressed the audience.
Duncan Wilson highlighted the transcendent importance of heritage, using Croatian writer Slavenka Drakuliç’s words on the destruction of the bridge at Mostar: “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.”