Members of the public are today invited to have their say in how the Old and New Towns of Edinburgh World Heritage Site should be run. The consultation will gather feedback for the three organisations who manage the site – The City of Edinburgh Council, Edinburgh World Heritage, and Historic Environment Scotland, and closes at the end of July.
Public meetings will be held with different community and residents’ groups, and a new digital ‘place standard’ tool which will be used to gauge the quality and design of an environment in a way that’s accessible and easy to understand.
World Heritage Sites must have robust management plans in place to ensure their Outstanding Universal Value (what makes them of worldwide importance) is preserved and enhanced. The feedback and suggestions gathered during the consultation exercise will play an important role in shaping the new management plan, expected to launch in Spring 2017.
Edinburgh’s World Heritage Site is a unique space, where world famous historic sites sit alongside modern businesses and residential areas, and as a result experiences a range of development pressures and opportunities. It attracts international interest and is home to many of the iconic landmarks that make Edinburgh world renowned. A recently published report found that residents, visitors and businesses attach an economic value of between £1.2 and £1.4 billion to Edinburgh’s World Heritage Site.
Cllr Ian Perry, Convener of the City of Edinburgh Council Planning Committee, said: ‘Our World Heritage Site is of crucial importance to the future vision and development of the city. This consultation process is an opportunity for everyone to have their say on how the site is being run. We would like as many people as possible to let us know what they think is working well, and where we can make improvements.’
Adam Wilkinson, Director of Edinburgh World Heritage commented: ‘The management plan consultation may sound like a theoretical exercise, but the plan is a living document that provides the base from which the partners in the management of the World Heritage Site guide change. Its review is an important opportunity for the communities of the World Heritage Site and the city in general to ensure their voice is heard. We would urge everyone to get involved and take part in this consultation process.”
Barbara Cummins of Historic Environment Scotland added: “As partners in the Management Plan, we welcome the launch of the consultation – this provides an opportunity to gather suggestions and ideas from those who live, work and visit Edinburgh on how we manage and celebrate the Old and New Towns World Heritage Site.”