#HeritageChat May 2022 – Heritage Skills

People working to preserve an ancient wall. In May 2022 #HeritageChat discussed Heritage Skills. The chat was co-facilitated by Victoria Wallworth (National Historic Ships UK) and Prof. Ian Baxter, chairs of the Skills, Education & Engagement Advocacy Group at The Heritage Alliance (HEF member). This topic is important to HEF, in fact it will be part of the forthcoming Heritage Resilience Plan, and it is tackled by a specific topic group, the ‘Heritage Skills Demand Group’.

Participants discussed issues related both to the supply side of the topic (e.g. traditional skills training, digital upskilling, professional routes in higher education) and to the demand side. Thanks to all the participants!

You can read the summary of the chat here.

Picture: Anne Nygard on

#HeritageChat April 2022 – Places of Worship

A man sitting in a church, with the sun light illuminating the wall behind him. In April 2022 #HeritageChat discussed Places of Worship from the heritage perspective. Climate change, redundant churches, the religious and historical significance of buildings were three of the topics tackled in April’s #HeritageChat.

Participants lively debated what does ‘sustainability’ mean in the context of religious buildings; the role of local communities and how to engage with them; community uses for historic churches; the management of historical and religious significance; threats resulting from climate change and adaptation. A lot of useful resources were shared over the course of the chat (e.g. Fundraising for Net Zero Carbon, Support Officers for Historic Places of Worship, Options Appraisals and Church Buildings Reports, House of Good Report, and many other).

This was one of the most successful #HeritageChats (for number of participants and tweets shared), with so many interesting points raised – thanks to all the participants!

You can read the summary of the chat here.

Picture: Isaac Sloman on

Join the HEF team! We are recruiting

Historic Environment Forum Manager (4 days a week, £36,000 FTE – Initial fixed term contract to the end of September 2023)

Are you passionate about the heritage sector? Do you want to facilitate the future of collaboration across important issues facing the sector?

We are seeking an outstanding person to manage the Historic Environment Forum and its Steering Group.

The Historic Environment Forum is a Historic England-funded project delivered on behalf of the wider sector by the Heritage Alliance, the heritage sector’s umbrella organisation and advocacy body. The successful candidate(s) will join the Alliance’s small, energetic team based in offices in central London (with options for home working).

To apply: Please submit the completed application form with a covering letter outlining your reasons for applying for the post to Dr Mike Heyworth, HEF Team Leader, at

Closing Date: 6 May 2022 at 12.00.

You can view the full job description here.


#HeritageChat March 2022 – International

A road with a lot of flags to the side, which is the entrance to United NationsIn March 2022 #HeritageChat discussed International engagement and collaboration. The chat was led in collaboration with Lizzie Glithero-West, CEO of the Heritage Alliance (HEF member) and Graham Bell, Director of Cultura Trust and member of the Europa Nostra board.

Lots of interesting points were raised in the chat. Participants discussed how can we make meaningful and ethical partnerships, and what role digital can play in this; what is the potential of international collaboration to improve resilience in the UK; what would be needed to improve international collaboration, and what barriers are still making collaboration difficult; how to measure the success of international partnerships. Considering the current difficult Ukrainian situation, participants also shared thoughts on the universal nature of culture, and what impact will this war have.

You can read the summary of the chat here.

Picture: Canva.

#HeritageChat February 2022 – Storytelling and Heritage

Led on a wall that reads 'We are all made of stories'February’s #HeritageChat focused on Storytelling and Heritage.

Participants explored the elements that make a story really successful, giving also practical suggestions, and what is the potential of digital storytelling. They highlighted in particular the potential of reaching geographically diverse audiences. The chat then focused on community-led storytelling, with associated risks and opportunities, and the difficulties of telling stories about dark heritage.

The chat also explored how to measure the success of storytelling, and participants highlighted that the impact of storytelling is difficult to measure with numbers, as it involves emotions and reflections. Finally, participants discussed to what extent storytelling can be used to motivate the public become more engaged with important issues such as climate change. The power of giving examples and sharing stories is showcased in our report Heritage Responds, which aims to inspire heritage organisations to take action to fighting climate change through case studies.

You can read the summary of the chat here.

Picture: Social Cut on Unsplash.

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