The contribution of an events programme to sustainable heritage conservation: a study of the National Trust in England.

This source preferred by Dorothy Fox

Authors: Fox, D. and Johnston, N.

Start date: 6 July 2009

Whilst for many nations progressing a sustainable development agenda is a priority, for others, conserving their existing socio-natural heritage in a sustainable way may be significant. In the United Kingdom, the National Trust, a charitable organisation, supports its extensive conservation role through a wide-ranging programme of events each year. This study explores the various ways in which these events have been developed to contribute to sustainable heritage conservation.

The method for this case study consisted of the collection and analysis of both primary and secondary data. The former obtained through in-depth interviews with key personnel within the National Trust, with secondary data from National Trust and other sources used in support.

The findings show the Trust’s events play a vital role in educating the public in sustainability, in respect of both natural and cultural heritage. The interview participants revealed that the events are conceived in two main ways – first, a top-down approach whereby events relate to a national organisational campaign and secondly, events which develop from the bottom-up and reflect the uniqueness of each of the Trust’s properties.

This study therefore extends the prevailing approach to events and sustainable development by considering the very positive contribution of an events programme to heritage conservation, which has implications for other conservation bodies throughout the world.

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