Skip to main content

Using local heritage to make your place thrive - 21st March

Clevedon Pier
Clevedon Pier, North Somerset

Using local heritage to make your place thrive

Webinar: 21st March 2024 | 3pm-5pm

MMU Business School: Room number 4.08

Open to all


Online - Register here 

In-person - Register here 

Heritage has an essential role to play in place development, regeneration, and local pride. This seminar explores heritage within our towns and cities through a variety of themes, to help us understand the richness that these assets provide place managers and places.  This will include insights into

  • Heritage and climate
  • Heritage and Emotion
  • Heritage and Pride in Place
  • Heritage and Marketing
  • Heritage in place transformation

This will allow us to understand the variety of ways heritage can be used in our places to tackle local, national, and international issues. For example, how it can be used to help mental wellbeing and help our places economically thrive.

This seminar will involve speakers in a wide range of disciplines both academic and practitioner based to highlight the wide themes of heritage.


Catherine Dewar– Historic England

Talk: This must be the place: why is heritage so important?

From identity to wellbeing, from economy to planet, heritage is fundamental to our everyday lives. What is Historic England doing to ensure heritage is valued and is improving people’s lives.   


Catherine has worked in the heritage sector for 28 years, starting out in local government in Portsmouth and Birmingham before moving back home to Newcastle to work for English Heritage in 2003. She worked across the North East (with a brief stint in Yorkshire) before moving down to Manchester to take up the post of Regional Director for Historic England’s North West team in 2015.

In 2022, she stepped away for a year from the regional role, leading HE’s Climate Change Programme. Catherine is now back in the North West, bringing that climate change experience to the team’s work.

Catherine trained at Oxford Brookes as a Town Planner with a specialism in Urban Design. She is passionate about making places that not only work but that also bring people joy.

Dr. Jenny Kanellopoulou- Senior Lecture at Manchester Met Law School

Talk: Culture heritage beyond juridification: towards a place-first research agenda.


Jenny Kanellopoulou is a Senior Lecturer at Manchester Law School, who researches law, culture, and place with a focus on legal geography, urban policy, and intellectual property. She is a Fellow of the IPM.


Vicky Harrison– Heritage Manager, Crewe Town Council

Talk: The Art of Storytelling: Using Crewe’s past to shape its future.

If you believe the headlines, Crewe is a HS2 ghost town full of empty shops. But less than 100 years ago it was the beating heart of railway engineering and a Victorian New Town success. This session will explore how heritage can unlock the stories of the past to create a more meaningful sense of place, pride and identity.


Vicky started her career at York Minster, progressing to Assistant Director of Collections & Learning. Major projects included leading the curatorial elements of the £23m York Minster Revealed project and becoming the first cathedral to achieve Museum Accreditation. In 2019, Vicky established her own consultancy with clients including the Cathedral Fabric Commission for England and Historic Environments Scotland. In 2021, she joined Crewe Town Council to create a heritage offer. Vicky is also a member of Worcester Cathedral’s Fabric Advisory Committee, a Volunteer Specialist for the National Trust and the Accreditation Mentor for Crewe Heritage Trust.

Prof. Rebecca Magdin – Professor of Urban Studies, University of Glasgow

Talk: Why Historic Places Matter Emotionally

This talk explores the reasons why historic urban places matter emotionally by exploring a conceptual framework that helps us to understand the emotional relationships that develop between people and place.


Dr Rebecca Madgin is a Professor of Urban Studies, University of Glasgow and the Programme Director for the AHRC’s Place-Based Research Programme. Rebecca works broadly on the relationship between heritage and place-making and particularly on the emotional value of historic places and has published widely on heritage-led redevelopment initiatives in the 20th and 21st centuries.

Donna Graves – Independent historian and urban planner

Talk: "Can Heritage Help Us Survive?"

Graves will share her career pivot in heritage conservation—from a focus on social inclusion to centering the climate crisis, including an overview of her work with the US National Park Service developing innovative strategies that position historic sites as platforms for deeper understanding of the roots of the climate crisis and for inspiring climate action.


Donna is an independent historian and urban planner based in Berkeley, CA. She develops interdisciplinary public history projects that emphasize social equity and sense of place. Her involvement in projects that weave together local histories, preservation, art and community participation began with her tenure as executive director of The Power of Place, which received national acclaim for its ground-breaking work in interpreting the history of downtown Los Angeles through urban design, historic preservation and public art.


Back to top