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A brief description of INTO, the International National Trusts Organisation,
as well as both the ACNT, the Australian Council of National Trusts, and the NTHP, the National Trust for Historic Preservation of the USA,
with an overview of NTHP’s “11 Most Endangered Historic Places” and the ACNT’s “Our Heritage At Risk – National Top 10” with a comparative assessment of the weaknesses and strengths of some of the approaches.

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  1. 1. Europa Nostra Forum 2012 “Saving Europe’s Endangered Heritage” 1st June 2012Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal The Australian “Heritage at Risk” & the US “Most Endangered Historic Places” Professor Simon R Molesworth AM QC Executive Chairman, International National Trusts OrganisationInternational Affairs Ambassador, Australian Council of National Trusts
  2. 2. Europa Nostra Forum 2012 Australian Council of National Trusts
  3. 3. Europa Nostra Forum 2012I will:(1) Briefly describe INTO, the International National Trusts Organisation;(2) Briefly describe both the ACNT, the Australian Council of National Trusts, and the NTHP, the National Trust for Historic Preservation of the USA.(3) Provide an overview of NTHP’s “11 Most Endangered Historic Places” and the ACNT’s “Our Heritage At Risk – National Top 10” with a comparative assessment of the weaknesses and strengths of some of the approaches.
  4. 4. Europa Nostra Forum 2012 The Mission of INTO is:To promote the conservation and enhancement ofthe cultural and natural heritage of all nations for the benefit of the people of the world.
  5. 5. America’s 11 MostEndangered HistoricPlacesAN OVERVIEW
  6. 6. America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places Since 1988, the National Trust for Historic Preservation has used this list to raiseawareness about the threats facing some of the USAs greatest treasures. 6
  7. 7. America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places• The list, which has identified 233 sites to date, has been so successful in galvanizing preservation efforts that only a handful of sites have been lost.• Dozens of sites have been saved through the tireless work of the National Trust, its partners, and local preservationists across the US.• Many more sites are now considered "favorable" and are on the path to a positive solution.• Still, others remain threatened, and the National Trust and its partners continue in their efforts to protect these important endangered places. 7
  8. 8. America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic PlacesNominationSites can be nominated both internally (by NTHP staff) and externally (byanyone, from Heritage Partners to the general public)NTHP Field Staff vet the nominations and make a first cut at which onesshould move forwardThe list goes through informal vetting in the NTHP Marketing andPreservation Divisions. It also goes through a more formal vetting processwith the Leadership Team (about 30 senior managers)The final decision is made by the NTHP 8-person Executive Team(comprising the NTHP CEO plus the Division chiefs). 8
  9. 9. America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic PlacesAwarenessVariety of public outreach events: major press conference (that is oftenpicked up by the major television networks); exclusive stories to the largestnewspapers (e.g., New York Times); and sometimes do regional pressconferences.The online presence of the NTHP’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places –both on the web and social media is huge – recording their biggest sitevisitation numbers of the year.Web site ( 9
  10. 10. America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places2012 marks the 25th anniversary of the program, which has become one of the most effective tools to save the USAs irreplaceable architectural, cultural, and natural heritage.The following are some examples of successes through the past 25 years. 10
  11. 11. South Pasadena/El Sereno – Listed 1989 South Pasadena, California• Predominantly Hispanic communities distinguished by handsome, well-preserved Victorian, Craftsman bungalow, and Mediterranean Revival-style houses.• Threatened in late 1980s by a proposed six-mile, $1.4 billion freeway extension, which would have cut through four nationally-recognized historic districts and destroyed almost 1,000 homes.• 1999 lawsuit filed by the National Trust for Historic Preservation and others led to federal injunction prohibiting the California Department of Transportation from purchasing additional land and planning or designing the freeway.• Federal Highway Administration withdrew its funding support in 2003 of the 710 Freeway Extension, and in 2004, the California Department 11
  12. 12. Wentworth-by-the-Sea Hotel – Listed 1996 New Castle, New Hampshire• 1874 resort hotel; Hosted guests ranging from middle-class families to celebrities and diplomats until its closure in 1982.• Stood vacant and neglected for more than two decades and faced deterioration.• After the hotel’s inclusion on the 11 Most list, the National Trust worked with a local friends group and a developer to secure funding from key state agencies for rehabilitation.• The property, restored to its Victorian grandeur, re-opened in 2003 and is now a premier Marriott destination hotel and spa and a member 12 of
  13. 13. Central High School – Listed 1996 Little Rock, Arkansas• 1927 public high school; Site of forced desegregation in 1957 when African American students were escorted into the building by U.S. Army soldiers.• School suffered from deteriorating building conditions as a result of urban flight, a declining neighborhood, a dwindling tax base, and shrinking budgets.• The schools inclusion on the 11 Most list helped secure National Historic Site status and grants totaling $2.5 million. In 2000, the Little Rock School District budgeted $10 million for the rehabilitation of the building.• This work went hand-in-hand with the creation of a Central High Museum and Visitors Center, and the neighborhood is experiencing positive revitalization ripples.• In 2007, Central High celebrated 50 years of integration. 13
  14. 14. Eisenhower VA Medical Center – Listed 2000 Leavenworth, Kansas• Veterans healthcare facility founded in 1884. National Historic Landmark, part of the National Home of the Disabled Volunteer Soldier Historic District.• Threatened in 2000, when the Department of Veterans Affairs wanted to demolish 39 of the historic buildings as part of a downsizing project.• Publicity from the 11 Most list led to Department of Veterans Affairs signing a long- term lease with developers Pioneer Group, Inc.• Pioneer Group, Inc. is rehabilitating the buildings to provide veteran-related uses, including senior housing. Also seeking tenants and adaptively rehabilitating buildings for office space, 14 classrooms and residential uses.
  15. 15. Nine Mile Canyon – Listed 2004 Carbon, Duchesne & Uintah Counties, Utah• Often called "the worlds longest art gallery," as it contains more than 10,000 images carved and painted onto canyon walls by Native Americans.• Also home to numerous archeological sites, including pit houses, granaries, and village locations.• Threatened by tourism, recreation, and energy development, particularly truck traffic associated with natural gas development on the plateau above the canyon.• Despite 11 Most publicity, Bureau of Land Management announced in 2008 it would sell new oil and gas leases on the plateau, further endangering the site. National Trust and others filed a lawsuit, and U.S. District Court issued an order that prohibited BLM from issuing the leases.• United States Secretary of the Interior formally cancelled each of the leases at issue in the lawsuit, thus sparing Nine Mile Canyon from the additional harmful effects of truck traffic. 15
  16. 16. Pillsbury “A” Mill Complex – Listed 2011 Minneapolis, Minnesota• 1881 flour mill regarded as largest and most advanced industrial facility in the world at the time of its completion. National Historic Landmark.• Closed in 2003. Acquired by preservation-sensitive developer, but financing failed and the property was foreclosed upon in 2010.• Buildings stood mostly empty and with an unknown future upon complex’s inclusion on 11 Most list.• After listing, plans began for some of the buildings to be converted into apartments, studios and galleries for local artists.• The Trust will continue to be involved in the site’s 16 future as rehabilitation moves forward.
  17. 17. Europa Nostra Forum 2012
  18. 18. Europa Nostra Forum 2012Australian Council of National Trusts6 states + 2 territories = 8 National Trusts
  19. 19. Our Heritage at Risk National Top Ten 2010
  20. 20. The Our Heritage at Risk program is designed to raise awareness in theAustralian community of the threats to our heritage and encourage all levelsof government to conserve these places and collections for the future.The National Top Ten includes natural, indigenous and other cultural heritage,industrial and built heritage at risk from neglect, lack of funding, legislativefailures or lack of enforcement, or inappropriate development.The inclusion of a place in this National Top Ten List does not necessarilyimply a criticism of the owners or agencies responsible for the listed places,rather listing draws attention to the realities of threats, which may be beyondthe capacity of individual owners but capable of being safeguarded throughcommunity-wide or whole-of-government responses.
  21. 21. Europa Nostra Forum 2012 Connecting with traditions, localcommunities, people in their places. Aim is to foster passion about the potential loss of their cherished heritage
  22. 22. NominationsPartner organisations – such as the Federation of Australian Historical Societies – join inthe exercise – so as to increase objectivity, credibility and capacity to influencecommunity and government attitudes.Determined to work with the community – to give “the people” a sense of ownership ofthe programme – the call for nominations is advertised in national newspapers.As the National Top Ten “Our Heritage at Risk” is just a sample of that actually at riskacross Australia each year, selected from nominations from across Australia, a larger listof about 70 nominations must be reduced to the finalists.Nominations are grouped in to State/Territory lists, with each National Trust choosing 3or 4 priority nominations in their jurisdictions, determined by professional conservationstaff. At the national level, the ACNT then reduces the list to the finalists.
  23. 23. Awareness – 15 years onTwo stage awareness programme: 1st, at the call for nominations stage; 2nd forthe announcement of the final list. On each occasion, there is a pressconference and a multi-media release of announcements.Usually involves the President/Chair of the National Trusts together with a well-known public figure – a film or television identity or someone highly respected inthe Australian community. Usually a media “event” is organised – followed bynationwide interviews.Supported by a website awareness raising with otherforms of social electronic media being progressively utilized.
  24. 24. Windsor Hotel & Parliamentary Precinct, Melbourne Imminent risk of destruction and devaluation
  25. 25. The Windsor Hotel, an important part of the Victorian Parliamentary Precinct, wassaved from demolition in 1977 and restored in the 1980s. The building is noted forits architectural and historic significance and is considered the largest & grandest ofAustralian 19th century hotels. The precinct is in a Heritage Overlay and the hotel ison State and Trust registers.Heritage Victoria has issued planning permits for a 26 storey 91m high tower, andassociated demolition of part of the building on economic grounds. After a year ofadvocating against the redevelopment, the Victorian National Trust lost its SupremeCourt legal bid against this decision. This ruling may set a precedent allowing 100-metre buildings in the Windsor precinct.This campaign has raised significant concerns over the minister’s and HeritageVictoria’s handling of this planning issue. This development will significantlyimpact on the architectural integrity and historical significance of the hotel andon the broader parliamentary precinct known as Bourke Hill.
  26. 26. Lower Lakes and Coorong & the Murray Darling Basin Immediate risk of deterioration and degradation
  27. 27. The Murray River’s drainage basin covers over 1,000,000 km2, beginning in the State ofQueensland and extending though NSW, Victoria and South Australia. The DarlingRiver is the longest in Australia with an even larger catchment than the Murray. Bothriver systems support agriculture and a wide variety of ecosystems, and havearchaeological, scientific, ecological, Indigenous and European cultural and historicsignificance. This river system and catchment is the life-blood of much of Australiasupplying vital water, agricultural and ecosystem services to Australians, their livelihoodand their environment.River flow has been drastically reduced in both river systems, ceasing altogetherin some places. 95% of the Murray is degraded due to historical over-allocationof water. Lack of flows and excessive salt levels due to regulatory conflict,unsustainable water extraction together with drought have endangered flora and faunahabitats and have impacted on the sustainability of the economic and cultural practicesthroughout the vast region.Both rivers must be restored to health through action from all stakeholders. Currentmarket-based mechanisms are failing and Commonwealth Government intervention isurgently needed to ensure sufficient freshwater to flush the lower Murray River.
  28. 28. Murtoa Stick Shed, VictoriaImminent risk of deterioration and devaluation
  29. 29. Located in the Wimmera in Victoria, the building has a long low profile with the angleof the roof the same as the angle or repose of wheat, and is a dramatic component ofthe landscape. The building is the earliest and only remaining colossal grain storageshed built during WWII in Victoria. It has National Trust & State heritage listing andhas been nominated to the National Heritage List.Last used for storing grain in 1990, the redundant shed continues to bethreatened with demolition, and has deteriorated due to lack of maintenanceand neglect. Many of the poles are rotting at the base and the building is atrisk during high winds.The Victorian Government has committed $1.2 million to the repair of the shedenough to repair all poles, but only 50% of the shed. Additional funds are requiredadaptive reuse should be found. Reuse will help secure its future maintenance andpreservation, however, buildings as significant as this should be preservedregardless.
  30. 30. Burra Monster Mine Reserve, South Australia Imminent risk of destruction and devaluation
  31. 31. Burra is an old copper mining town in the State of South Australia, founded in 1845about 160 km from Adelaide. It is now a rural centre with a thriving cultural tourismindustry. The historic Monster Mine is at the heart of its heritage values. TheReserve is State heritage listed and a pending nomination for UNESCO worldheritage listing focusing on its Cornish mining heritage in the context of the evolutionof Australian mining and colonial development.Burra was the site of adoption of the ICOMOS Charter for conservation andmanagement of places of cultural significance.Burra’s mining buildings are now being threatened due to an application foran Exploration Licence over the Burra Heritage Monster Mine site. Significanthistoric buildings are at risk of demolition, and the grassland could bedestroyed under these actions.
  32. 32. Europa Nostra Forum 2012The destruction of heritage is a fundamentalbreach of the principle of intergenerationalequity, in that heritage destroyed or culturediminished within the time of the currentgeneration will deprive members of futuregenerations of their right to their culturalinheritance.
  33. 33. Australian Council of National TrustsWebsite: Email: Tel: +61 (0) 2 6247 6766
  34. 34. Website: Email: Tel: +44 (0) 20 7799 4578 Thank you