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HTVF – VIRTUAL – Supporting Historic High Streets: Heritage & the Town Centre Experience #1

19 November 2020 - 12:00 - 14:00

Following our popular seminar series in 2018 and 2019 on Supporting Historic High Streets, this seminar will explore the role of the heritage as a key part of the city or town centre economy and building greater resilience for local high streets.

While the High Street’s battle against out-of-town and online shopping continues, leisure and ‘experiences’ were emerging as its potential saviours, with the capacity to attract and retain new spending in town centres, and adding social benefits, if managed well. There is a risk that a new breed of leisure-based ‘clone towns’ will develop with cafes, bars, restaurants, crazy golf and other activities taking vacant shop units, but looking more locally could provide a more resilient and unique appeal to local residents and visitors alike – understanding our built and social heritage.

We will consider how to celebrate heritage assets and social heritage in town centres not usually thought of for their heritage value; when heritage is at risk from neglect or competition from other development pressures; as well as how to encourage new activities to take root in undervalued places. With funding available to support high streets, town centres and tourism, we will also look at what volunteers can do and the role of heritage interpretation to bring stories to life.

For professionals and communities alike, this is an important theme in the debate about future town centres.

Delegates will learn about:

• High Street Heritage Action Zones and their aims

• Why telling the story of a place matters for locals and visitors alike

• Managing a town or city undergoing change and strategies to help with recovery

• Protecting heritage and historic places under pressure from other development

• Exploring the role of other uses in vacant shop units and city centre buildings to make a change

• Why Urban Rooms are so useful in building bridges

• Supporting areas with a low awareness of local heritage assets

• The role of volunteers in developing local heritage tourism and awareness

• Understanding heritage interpretation and why it matters.


Historic Towns & Villages Forum

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