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  • Secretariat News (December 2018 – January 2019)

    Posted on January 25, 2019

    Latest news from the INTO Secretariat

    Our big news this quarter is that we have appointed a Deputy Secretary-General of INTO!  Alex Bishop will be joining INTO in March from the British Council where he manages Cultural Protection Fund grants.  This Fund supports projects in 12 countries across the Middle East.  Alex will take responsibility for the Helen Hamlyn Trust grant and oversight of the new TAP-INTO programme.  We will certainly spend more time introducing Alex properly in the future!

    Catherine spent time with the Bavaria National Trust (Kulturerbe Bayern) in Munich in late November.  Following early meetings with INTO the society launched in 2014, and this year they have launched a foundation.   Kulturerbe Bayern has grown from seventeen members to now over seven hundred, supported by 170 volunteers.  Moreover it has its first property!  A 15th century house in Rothenburg ob der Tauber.  This month it seems like they will officially join INTO and we welcome them to the family!

    – Catherine and the Secretariat team


    We held two side events at COP 24 in Poland and were joined by Ian Lumley of An Taisce at the workshop in the UK Pavilion on 14 December

    Catherine, June, Emily and Irena all attended the Heritage Alliance’s Heritage Day and here current NTEWNI Director, Hilary McGrady referencing INTO Chair, Fiona Reynolds

    Catherine gave a speech, partly in German, as guest of honour at the Bavarian Parliament

    The INTO Secretariat Heelis team met for Christmas lunch and to thank everyone for a good year! (l to r: Jacqui, John, Julie, Catherine and Geoffrey)Marquetta Goodwine who became Queen Quet after being elected Chieftess of the Gullah/Geechee Nation is a confirmed speaker at ICNT. A native of St Helena Island, South Carolina, she is an author, preservationist, computer science, lecturer and performance artist. Find our more about the Conference here.

    Catherine met INTO Trustee Irena Edwards at the National Trust’s Vyne Estate 

    Anita presented INTO’s SDGs paper in Poland

    You can now save on hotel bookings and help INTO at the same time with Goodwings!


    ICNT news: Catherine, Bill and Oliver have participated in three panel meetings, and since the beginning of January are now meeting on a fortnightly basis.  There have also been many sub-panel meetings on bursaries, hotel bookings and workshops.   Moreover, Catherine has been involved in one-to-one discussions with the workshop track leaders and participants, including the Getty Conservation Institute, 1772 Foundation and Newport Mansions.

    Catherine will meet representatives of Herita, our hosts in 2021, during her visit to Belgium next month.

    Working groups: Oliver and Bill joined a meeting of the INTO Africa Group mainly concerned with planning the Zimbabwe Conference in 2020. The Steering Group for the Helen Hamlyn Trust grant will have its first meeting in April.

    Reciprocal visiting: Working with Natalie Bull and Hollie Boulet of the National Trust of Canada, we have distributed the table and survey.  To date (24 January) we have had fourteen responses to the survey.  Therefore please consider completing it if you have not already!

    Working holidays: Julie Thompson has prepared an update for the Board meeting on 29 January.  We are proud to say that we have featured more than 165 holidays since 2011!  Working Holidays provide wonderful opportunities to get involved in practical conservation work, learn new skills and have new experiences.  Furthermore bringing international volunteers to a project often sparks local community interest and involvement.

    Learn and share: Catherine has been liaising with the Czech National Trust about a possible joint event in Prague in June 2019.  This would be an opportunity for INTO members to share their expertise in volunteering, engaging people and financial sustainability.   Lastly, we have also been thinking about ways to involve INTO members in the forthcoming Innocastle visit to Wales.


    TAP-INTO: Firstly the Trustees will review the Secretariat’s proposed approach to managing TAP-INTO and the Small Grants Programme at their meeting.  (After strategy discussion with Fiona Reynolds, we will be moving TAP-INTO into the Family strategy.)

    Membership growth: We welcomed new members, Kulturerbe Bayern, in January.  In the light of our Helen Hamlyn Trust grant, we have also reviewed our targets (100 members by 2021).

    Communications: John, Bill and Catherine met to discuss social media and knowledge management.  John has reviewed all our INTO members’ websites and signed up for newsletters.    Catherine has been developing the brief for a short film to show on the opening day of the Conference. Something that shows the diversity of the global heritage movement and the challenges we face.  That makes us all feel proud to belong to the INTO family and underlines our shared values.  Watch this space!

    Candidates and new Trusts: Catherine met Mr Ernő Schaller-Baross, Under Secretary of State, to discuss the possibility of establishing a Hungarian National Trust.  Our membership growth strategy includes four potential new Trusts.  Alongside Hungary, we have highlighted the Middle East as a possible target area, Hong Kong (following Fiona’s visit) and Slovenia (with whom we have been in discussion before). 

    The visit by Chinese heritage experts organised by Geoffrey has been postponed until next year.  Lastly, Catherine met Igor Kocian, a representative of the heritage movement in Slovakia. 


    SDGs Paper: Anita and Oliver submitted the paper Heritage Conservation and the SDG’s that was presented by Elizabeth Erasito at the Australia Pacific ICOMOS Conference in Fiji, to the Convenor of the Conference for the double peer review selection process for inclusion in the Australia ICOMOS publication Historic Environment in 2019.  While papers that are not selected will be published on the dedicated website permanently soon after. We will know by 4 February if we have been successful.  An added opportunity for our Voice message to be broadcast!

    COP 24: Since the last meeting, Oliver has spent much of his time planning for and participating in COP 24.  It took place in Katowice from 3 – 14 December 2018 where Catherine and Anita joined Oliver for the second week.  Along with approximately 28,000 other people!  You can read more on our dedicated webpage – or even listen to the podcasts!

    Voice timetable: We have put together a calendar of events around which to hang voice interventions in 2019.  Consequently we are developing plans for International Women’s Day (8 March); World Heritage Day (18 April) and World Day for Cultural Diversity (21 May).

    Innocastle: Catherine and Jacqui have been finalising the first report for our Innocastle Project. Jacqui inputted all the expenses before Christmas which the auditor then needed to approve. We met her this week to go through the supporting paperwork.  Catherine wrote a summary of our input to the project this semester.   This will then be incorporated with the other partners’ in the first progress report.

    Celebrating excellence: The Jury for our 2019 Excellence Awards met in December and found five winners who will be honoured in Bermuda.   As a result we have some great case studies that will inform both discussion in Bermuda and our future voice papers.


    Governance: We have now lodged the appropriate paperwork with Companies House to strike off INTO Limited from the Companies Register and the winding up process is nearly complete.

    Helen Hamlyn Trust project: Our new member of staff, Alex Bishop, starts on 20 March and looks forward to meeting everyone at the Bermuda Conference.  We are already making a start on the rest of the project activity although this will kick-in in earnest once Alex starts.

    Trustee satisfaction survey: We received nine responses in total and identified room for improvement in board engagement.  We used zoom for our last meeting and everyone agreed that this technology improved the discussion.

    2019 Budget: Catherine and Bob have prepared a budget for the Trustees to review at their meeting on 29 January.

    Membership Renewals: Sadly, Jackie Hunt has had to resign as our Membership Co-ordinator.  We are so grateful for her contribution over the past six years as a wonderful, reliable and conscientious volunteer.  Jackie has been quietly getting on with the job of Membership Co-ordinator and has made an invaluable impact on how we collect our membership subs.  We are all incredibly grateful for the time and effort she has gifted to INTO since 2013.

    In the light of Jackie’s departure, we will revise our approach to membership renewals.

    Tech solutions: The Trustees approved Bill’s proposal to join Goodwings, an ethical travel and hotel booking portal.  As a result we are now encouraging more people to use the site to enable INTO to benefit from the commission. Meanwhile, Bill has been looking at ways to improve the INTO website branding and Catherine had a good meeting with the NTEWNI’s Head of Digital about future solutions.

    If this post does not display correctly, you can download it here as a pdf!

    Coming up

    Next month, Catherine, June and Emma Thompson travel to Brussels for the next Innocastle meeting.   Subsequently the partners will all come to the UK in May.   It should be an interesting study visit for everyone and we hope to be able to invite a number of INTO members along too.  We will use the opportunity to also meet INTO members, Herita, in Antwerp.

    Catherine will meet the team from Arches in London.  Developed by the Getty Conservation Institute and the World Monuments Fund, this is an open source platform for heritage inventories.  Many INTO member organisations are responsible for heritage inventories but not all their data is safe and future-proof.  Arches could be a good solution.  Similarly there are other organisations that might use Arches to engage communities in identifying special places, using the new app.  And lastly when a hurricane hits, how does everyone know where the important heritage is? We’re rather excited about how INTO members will use Arches in the future and have invited them to the Bermuda Conference.

    We will celebrate International Women’s Day again on 8 March and look forward to the Bermuda Conference at the end of the month.

    Catherine’s blogs are available here.

    Find out more about the INTO Amicus supporters programme here.

    The International National Trusts Organisation (INTO) is a non-profit organisation registered as a charity England and Wales (No 1175994).  Our registered address is 20 Grosvenor Gardens, London SW1W 0DH, UK.

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