Insight

Risky Business?

Investing in Heritage at Risk

06 Feb 2018
Lichfields has completed a pioneering study for Historic England into the economic, environmental and social returns offered by Heritage at Risk sites in London.
 
The study was a collaboration between our research, economics and heritage teams and draws on available metrics from project evaluation data and our Evaluate tool to quantify the values and benefits of investment into sites and structures at risk.
 
Ten case studies show that investment into Heritage at Risk can deliver an unrivalled richness in regeneration outcome: not just preservation of historic fabric, but optimised use of space, job creation, economic gains, enhancement of social facilities, training opportunities and educational programmes. Comparatively small investments can unlock transformational change by altering local perceptions and breaking the cycle of blight caused by redundant and problematic buildings.
 
Local investment in Heritage at Risk delivers investment into local landmarks, local distinctiveness and neighbourhood pride. Restored venues can become regional cultural destinations in their own right, contributing to London’s world-class offer.
 
Our investigations revealed a considerable overlap between Heritage at Risk and the areas of greatest deprivation in London (and England), highlighting that investment into Heritage at Risk often pays a social dividend. On our recommendation a new policy on Heritage at Risk has been included within the draft London Plan.
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