richard at pCyUe_xoGZvk24cFMtH16phxJ72uVtheJzAK_De-xDsiF4SjvhQ03BlqwBZa72zyud1qvNXjuLA.yahoo.invalid
Wed Nov 15 05:08:24 GMT 2006
Reflecting on this, it illustrates how complex decisions on
preservation and tuning can be - what really counts as significant?
what really needs to be preserved? where does quality come into the
equation? and (most of all) do those charged with decision-making or
in advisory positions have the knowledge and information on which to
make sound judgments? In case anyone reads this as me saying "I'm the
only person with the knowledge - it should be me" can I just stress
this is not at all what I am saying. But I do believe that we
historians should avoid misleading comments like the Prestbury one
cited and look instead to providing information suitable for decision-
I entirely agree with Chris.
Here in Western Australia we define heritage as:
"Those things from the past which are valued enough today to save for
We are certainly not alone is using this definition, or something
similar, which is intended to invite careful thought, research and
debate as to what exactly we do consider valuable enough to hand on.
For a number of years it has seemed to me that some of those who have
considerable influence over heritage issues in the UK have replaced
this mantra with,
"Everything from the past must be saved for future
To quote from the English Heritage web site, "Listing is not intended
to fossilise a building." Oh that some of their own staff would
take that statement on board!
Whilst there is no doubt that the last hundred years has seen
destruction of heritage buildings at unprecedented levels, many have
become so precious about the preservation of remaining items that we
are in danger of completely stultifying what we hand on to future
generations. If previous generations had been so cautious many of
our churches and cathedrals would not be the rich mixture of
architectural styles that they are, and that would be to everyone's
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