Swindon heritage survey launched in bid to protect legacy

Mechanics Institute chairman Daniel Rose has welcomed the strategy as a chance for people to learn more about and take inspiration from the town heritage

Mechanics Institute chairman Daniel Rose has welcomed the strategy as a chance for people to learn more about and take inspiration from the town heritage

First published in News Swindon Advertiser: Photograph of the Author by , @SwindonAdver007

MEMBERS of the public are being asked their views on a plan to protect Swindon’s heritage for future generations.

The draft Swindon Heritage Strategy also aims to educate people about the town’s history and use its heritage to drive social, environmental and economic regeneration in the borough.

The strategy has been devised by the Swindon Heritage Board, made up of representatives of national heritage bodies, the Swindon and Wiltshire councils, Swindon Heri-tage Coalition and the Swindon and District History Network.

Other objectives include creating a Swindon Heritage Hub, drawing together the national heritage bodies in the town to develop excellent training, skills and career opportunities for the sector.

Plans to move the collections of the Swindon Museum and Art Gallery to a new town centre site also form part of the strategy, as does developing partnerships between the voluntary, public and business sectors.

A questionnaire – on paper and online – will ask people what they regard as priorities, such as options for landmarks like the Mechanics Instit-ute and the Locarno, to ensuring young people get a chance to learn about Swindon's heritage.

Council leader Rod Bluh said: “We have a duty to not only protect the diverse heritage of our town, but to educate our young people so they grow up with a sense of pride and belonging in the place in which they live.

“I would ask that people take the time to read the draft strategy and also fill in our questionnaire, so we can build up a good picture of what Swindon’s heritage means to local people and what they want to prioritise.”

Daniel Rose, chairman of the Mechanics Institu-tion Trust, said: “Our heritage needs protecting and celebrating as a way to make us all feel proud of where we live and be inspired by the achievements of the town’s past.”

Sharon Soutar, of Rodbourne Community History Group, said: “This is a great opportunity for us all to say what makes Swindon special. Swindon has all sorts of heritage and it is really important that we celebrate it and try to protect it for the future.”

The draft strategy consultation will run until April 15 and the survey is at www.surveymonkey.

com/s/N8Y66YK The draft strategy is at www.swindon.gov.uk/ heritagestrategy. Any comments can be submitted at heritagestrategy@ swindon.gov.uk or to Tammy Reeve, Swindon Council, Civic Offices, Euclid Street, Swindon, SN1 2JH.

The survey is also available at the One Stop Shop, Swindon Libraries and Museums, or by post.

Comments (4)

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6:11pm Wed 27 Feb 13

faatmaan says...

just another scam to justify more spending on a disused derelict building,
just another scam to justify more spending on a disused derelict building, faatmaan
  • Score: 0

7:38pm Wed 27 Feb 13

Localboy86 says...

Why the need to preserve everything, the Locarno for example could easily be turned into anything without effecting the look of the outside too much. Then we can benefit from it's new use whilst still being able to appreciate it. Its just an empty old shell at the moment which looks rather sad
Why the need to preserve everything, the Locarno for example could easily be turned into anything without effecting the look of the outside too much. Then we can benefit from it's new use whilst still being able to appreciate it. Its just an empty old shell at the moment which looks rather sad Localboy86
  • Score: 0

9:18pm Wed 27 Feb 13

roberto5 says...

Wheres all this money coming from SBC? You want to keep Heritage in Swindon, then why have you made loads of staff cuts in the Heritage departments?, like Parks for example. This is all just a scam, someone is making money somewhere from all this research, another consultant prob, just like the first comment says. SCAM.
Wheres all this money coming from SBC? You want to keep Heritage in Swindon, then why have you made loads of staff cuts in the Heritage departments?, like Parks for example. This is all just a scam, someone is making money somewhere from all this research, another consultant prob, just like the first comment says. SCAM. roberto5
  • Score: 0

8:02am Thu 28 Feb 13

Tim Newroman says...

The laughable, self-appointed 'Mechanics Institution Trust' is the primary reason why the Mechanics Institute - our heritage - lies rotting, decrepit and unused.

You cannot save or protect heritage by opposing everything and letting it crumble to dust.

And we should all do our best to ensure that anything, or anyone, who uses the word 'community' when attached to their plans for such buildings is roundly ignored. It never means the 'community' at all, only a select few people who can sit around drinking tea at 11am weekdays discussing the terrible 'artwork' their friend has produced using a council grant.
The laughable, self-appointed 'Mechanics Institution Trust' is the primary reason why the Mechanics Institute - our heritage - lies rotting, decrepit and unused. [p] You cannot save or protect heritage by opposing everything and letting it crumble to dust. [p] And we should all do our best to ensure that anything, or anyone, who uses the word 'community' when attached to their plans for such buildings is roundly ignored. It never means the 'community' at all, only a select few people who can sit around drinking tea at 11am weekdays discussing the terrible 'artwork' their friend has produced using a council grant. Tim Newroman
  • Score: 0

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