British Historical and Architectural Heritage

969 Words4 Pages
Britain has around 370000 buildings and properties considered to be of historical and architectural interest. These, along with archaeological sites and monuments, make up the heritage sector. The buildings on the heritage list are broken down into three grades; I, II*, and II. Grade I makes up 2.5% of listed buildings and are of exceptional historic importance, some are even of international interest. Grade II* buildings are somewhat important, and Grade II are of special interest. The majority of listed buildings are Grade II, at 92%. (www.english-heritage.org.uk) The Historic House Association is responsible for about 1500 historic homes and gardens, with three hundred of these houses are available for the public to visit. All of the homes under the HHA are privately owned estates and some houses are still lived in. Many of the building and monuments have needed extensive repairs or renovations before they can be opened for the public. (Brine, Feather 2010). Historic houses face a unique challenge that is not found in any other type of museum. In order for a house to attract more visitors, more time accurate furniture and art pieces need to be collected. More specifically, these pieces should have some relation to the house or to the people who lived there. Any time accurate pieces must also be held to the same conservation status as the structure and architecture of the house is. The success of historic house museums depends on the house as a whole with all of the objects displayed there. (Pinna) The reason historic houses need to be more careful than museums concerning the objects displayed are that the displays are meant to give visitors a glimpse of the past. A problem with this is it can only show one poin... ... middle of paper ... ...interest of society as it contributes to learning about proper heritage unlike the distasteful James Bond exhibit at the Imperial War Museum. However, all London boroughs are facing fiscal pressure from policies passed by parliament and the central London government that are going into effect now4¬. A direct consequence of this is that the Bexley Council must search for areas to reduce spending. According to the Cabinet Member for Leisure, Arts, and Tourism, Councillor Peter Catterall, “{We}[they] are also working closely with the Bexley Heritage Trust to reduce the cost of providing the substantial heritage offer in the Borough at Hall Place, Danson House and across the museum service. As well as reviewing the scope of the heritage offer, I am also working with the Trustees to consider other ways of generating extra business to underpin the core heritage function….”
Open Document