In her presentation at the British School in Rome on 14 September, co-hosted by FAI, the Italian National Trust, Fiona Reynolds, Chairman of INTO, spoke about the role of public-private partnerships in heritage preservation.
Drawing on examples from across the world, Fiona highlighted the importance of partnership. “Since the very beginning,” she said “public and private organisations have worked together to make things happen.”
She referred to the first UK heritage legislation of the nineteenth century, designed to protect extraordinary monuments, like Stonehenge, that were being broken up for building stone or ploughed out by farmers, and how the voluntary sector had played an important role in all the major advances in UK heritage policy.
Fiona also talked about the founding of UNESCO in 1945 and how it drew heavily on the expertise of academics, voluntary bodies and other experts. She referenced the solidarity and shared responsibility demonstrated in the project to safeguard the Abu Simbel temples in Egypt.
To show how successful heritage PPPs can be, Fiona gave examples from across the INTO network.
The National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Main Street Program which has contributed billions of dollars to urban regeneration; the National Trust of Australia’s Polly Woodside tall ship which is at the heart of the redevelopment of Melbourne’s South Wharf; the Merdeka Stadium in Kuala Lumpur, a symbol of Malaysian independence, saved from destruction by a coalition put together by the Malaysian Heritage Trust; the work of the Indonesian Heritage Trust to safeguard buildings damaged by the 2006 earthquake; the World Heritage Site of Pingyao in China; the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage’s Public Private Partnership with the Delhi Tourism Department to develop integrated heritage tourism circuits; Walcott Place in Saint Lucia … the list goes on.
What do they all have in common? Fiona’s tips for success were:
• a clear heritage vision
• clearly defined roles and responsibilities
• public credibility and support
• long term sustainability
The event in Rome was followed by the INTO EC/Board meeting in Milan, which you can read about in Catherine’s blog
INTO’s earlier urban heritage PPP case studies, prepared in partnership with the Asia-Europe Foundation, can also be downloaded: