Heritage Conference, Thurs 27 Oct 2016

Bristol 1873"Bristol 1873" by T. Sulman - The Illustrated London NewsTheme: The Future and Health of Bristol's Historic Places

Examining the future resilience of Bristol's historic estates.

Thursday 27 October 2016, 9.30 - 20.00
St James Priory, Whitson Street, Bristol, BS1 3NZ

With over one third of the city covered by Conservation Areas, Bristol's built heritage is critically important to the economic, social and environmental well being of the city. However with increasing pressures on these sites, from limited funding and resource to impacting developments, just how safe is their future? The inaugural Heritage Conference of the newly formed Bristol Heritage Forum will examine the resilience and future health of Bristol's historic estates.

The conference is an excellent opportunity to meet experts in the field of heritage conservation and learn from estate-specific examples. This event will be of interest to all those interested in protecting Conservation Areas, safeguarding historic buildings and structures, and generally wishing to get involved in conservation in their neighbourhoods.

Speakers include:

  • Dr Jonathan Foyle, National heritage expert and broadcaster
  • Mr Charles O'Brien, Commissioner, Historic England
  • Tim Bland, Development Oficer, Heritage Lottery Fund
  • Andrew Gordon, Heritage Planning and Partnership Officer, Bristol City Council
  • Pete Insole, Principal Historic Environment Officer, Bristol City Council
  • David Martyn, Kings Weston Action Group (KWAG)
  • Simon Birch, Chair, Bristol Civic Society

Conference Outline:
The Conference is split into a day and evening event, you can choose to attend the day programme or join us for the evening programme only.

Day Programme
9.30 - 16.00

Approaching the topic in practical terms, the morning session comprises of expert-led workshops covering issues such as funding, management models and attracting and retaining volunteers. While the afternoon session will take delegates to local estates in Bristol for guided site visits, showcasing historic estates in action and discussing real-life challenges and oppportunities. Lunch and networking is included.

Expert-led Workshops:
'Community Participation in Historic Places' led by David Martyn, Kings Weston Action Group (KWAG)
'Alternative Management Models for Historic Places' led by Arnos Vale Trust
'Community funding for historic places' led by Tim Bland, Heritage Lottery Fund

Expert-led Site Visits:
Stoke Park led by Andrew Gordon, Bristol City Council (bus trip)
Kings Weston Estate led by David Martyn, Kings Weston Action Group (bus trip)
Castle Park led by Pete Insole, Bristol City Council (short walk to site)

Evening Programme
17.00 - 20.00
The early evening plenary session will see a keynote presentation from national expert and broadcaster Dr Jonathan Foyle together with presentations from Mr Charles O'Brien of Historic England and from our own Heritage Forum.

Book your place
Book your place via eventbrite or contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

£12 Full day ticket (includes day and evening programme)
£8 Evening ticket (evening programme only)
Concession: If you are part of a community or neighbourhood group and would like to apply for a free ticket to the conference please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


About Bristol Heritage Forum

The Heritage Conference is the inaugural conference of the newly established Bristol Heritage Forum. The Bristol Heritage Forum is an independent body set up to champion the value of Bristol's built heritage. It is a network for local organizations to share and debate best practice, to facilitate collaboration, and to co-ordinate heritage initiatives. The Heritage Conference is the Forum's headline event to facilitate this knowledge exchange and sharing of best practice. For more information on the Forum, click here.

Join the Forum discussion on twitter: @BHF_Bristol and facebook: @bristolheritageforum

Further Conference Information:

Use this link to download full details of the Conference Programme [PDF 657KB].

Workshop Information:
Community participation in historic places
Led by David Martyn from the Kings Weston Action Group (KWAG) this session will talk about working with volunteers and the importance of working in partnership with stakeholders to achieve clear objectives. The session will draw on KWAG’s work at Kings Weston that has followed the council’s conservation management plan for which KWAG were nominated for an English Heritage Angel Award in 2015.

Alternative management models for historic places
Led by Arnos Vale Trust (tbc) this session will talk about the importance of clear management to achieve the best long term care for our historic places. The session will use the example of Arnos Vale where a community trust model has created a successful management structure that secured the future of this historic landscape that was previously at risk. Arnos Vale won the English Heritage Angel Award in 2011.

Community funding for historic places
Led by Tim Bland from the Heritage Lottery Fund this session will explore funding opportunities for historic places with an emphasis on community led historic landscape projects. Tim will provide examples of successful projects that have involved a collaborative, inclusive approach to raising awareness of and securing the future of our historic environment.

Site Visit Information:

Visit 1 – Stoke Park (bus trip)
Led by Andrew Gordon of Bristol City Council this visit will look at some of the aspirations for this historic landscape. Andrew will talk through the history of the estate particularly the recent management issues and funding challenges.

Visit 2 – Kings Weston Estate (bus trip)
Led by David Martyn this visit will follow up the morning workshop looking at the projects undertaken by the KWAG working parties and the ongoing work around the estate undertaken by a committed group of volunteers.

Visit 3 – Castle Park (short walk)
Led by Pete Insole of Bristol City Council this visit will explore the history of the park and the challenges faced for managing urban historic spaces.

Keynote Speakers Information:

Dr Jonathan Foyle
National heritage expert and broadcaster Dr Jonathan Foyle was Chief Executive of World Monuments Fund Britain for eight years during which time he led funded solutions for the many historic sites from great estates with landscapes to cathedrals, churches and houses. He was a Curator of Historic Buildings at Hampton Court for as many years. He is a regular feature writer for the Financial Times on issues of architecture, history and craft, and is composing his fourth cathedral mongraph. A presenter of numerous television series on architecture including BBC2's 'Climbing Great Buildings', which featured Clifton Suspension bridge, he is currently co-presenting a series for Channel 4.

Mr Charles O'Brien
Commissioner, Historic England
Charles is an architectural historian and joint Series Editor of the renowned Pevsner Architectural Guides. Previously, Charles worked for the Historic Buildings Department of the National Trust in its southern region. He is a member of Historic England’s Advisory Committee and London Advisory Committee, the Advisory Board for the Victoria County History and the Heritage and Arts Committee of the Mercers Company. Charles was appointed as an Historic England Commissioner in 2016.

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