Back in the Easy Chair

Although the Heritage Protection Bill didn't make it into the Parliamentary timetable last year, it is understood that English Heritage have made progress on providing a long awaited up-date on Heritage advice to replace PPGs 15 and 16 and the supporting documentation that needs to be in place to deliver the eventual Act.

The Historic Towns Forum is continuing to work with English Heritage to disseminate that advice and the HTF's Annual Conference in October in Chichester will provide the opportunity to discuss Heritage at Risk, Heritage Protection, and, in association with the Academy of Urbanism, Learning from Place:

"I want to live in a place I can call World Class. Give me a sunlit square, not an underpass". *

Quality of place is central to the Forum's work, whether that is quality of the public realm or the buildings and structures that enclose and frame those public spaces. Working across disciplines to enhance places through a combination of strategy, control and investment is more likely to deliver better historic places. The Forum's work on Townscape has identified a number of issues that have been developed during the past year and which the Conference will pick up on.

As well as the main conference themes we are also planning to hold a reception in the Pallant House Gallery on the Wednesday evening, (where you can view one of the finest collections of modern art in the country - see, and trips to either the Rolls Royce Assembly plant, or the Cass Sculpture Foundation at Goodwood on the Friday afternoon (see

So make a note in your diaries now - 21 - 23 October, Chichester, and keep an eye out for the full Conference Programme later this year. Not to be missed.

Sam Howes, Chair, HTF

* Extract from Ian McMillan. Academy of Urbanism Poet in Residence, at the launch of World Class Places, 12 May 2009.