Protecting, maintaining and understanding the UK’s historic environment

Posted by er134 at Nov 20, 2014 12:16 PM |
New University of Leicester courses offer heritage sector new skills for protecting and understanding the past

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 20 November 2014

The importance of understanding and protecting the UK’s historic past will be highlighted in a series of courses run by the University of Leicester, winner of the Queen’s Anniversary Prize for Higher and Further Education in 2013 for its interconnected research and expertise in history, heritage and archaeology.

A new programme of short courses for those working in the heritage sector is being launched by the University of Leicester and the Heritage Skills Centre at Lincoln Castle in partnership with English Heritage this November – and will address the need for skills and gaps in knowledge by offering up to 20 courses per year for the next three years. Courses are open to professionals in the Heritage and Conservation sectors and to volunteers active in associations concerned with preserving the past.

The Heritage Practice Training Programme will be wide-ranging and cover topics such as: how to re-use and repurpose rural buildings; how to commission and specify work on historic buildings; how to use the latest technology to record and interpret the historic environment; and how to investigate sites associated with the First World War.

The courses will be delivered by academics and staff from the University of Leicester, English Heritage, the Heritage Skills Centre and external specialists, targeting specialist fields such as archaeologists, planners, conservation officers, architects, surveyors, contractors and others working in the historic environment.

Professor Simon Gunn from the University’s Centre for Urban History said: “We are very excited to be working with English Heritage and the Heritage Skills Centre on this new programme and to welcome those working in the sector to Leicester. It’s the wide range of expertise at the University of Leicester which led to the partnership with English Heritage and means that our teaching and research can continue to inform and be informed by current heritage practice.”

Courses will combine a number of formats, such as seminars and presentations, group working, field-based activities and site visits, allowing those taking part to put into practice what they have learned through practical skills.

Kathryn Banfield from the Heritage Skills Centre in Lincoln Castle added: “This partnership is a great opportunity to bring heritage professionals from around the country to see the fantastic built heritage of Lincoln and the wider county. We’re looking forward to sharing the expertise of craftspeople and building conservation professionals with the wider heritage sector.”

Courses range from £210 - £395 and will take place at College Court, the University’s hotel and conference centre in Leicester and the Heritage Skills Centre at Lincoln Castle.

The full first year course programme will be released in November and begin in early 2015. Email to be registered on the programme mailing list.

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Notes to Editors:

For more information please contact Emma Dwyer at

About the University of Leicester’s Centre for Urban History

Established in 1985, the Centre for Urban History (CUH) has become a major international centre for interdisciplinary research and graduate teaching. Current staff interests include environmental urban history, urban topography from 1700, colonial urban history, urban governance, oral history, the production of urban history from the 18th century, the law and urban property, the history of urban planning, housing and the built environment since 1750, 19th-century provincial towns and their imperial connections, domestic life and leisure, and industrial towns.

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