The importance of harnessing our heritage - Councillor Terry Halliwell

The importance of harnessing our heritage - Councillor Terry Halliwell

As lead member for heritage and building conservation at Wigan Council, it’s my job to ensure that Wigan Borough’s heritage is properly recognised and celebrated and that our unique buildings are conserved for the benefit of everyone.

It recognised that our Historic Environment belongs to everyone and that we must work together to ensure it is protected for future generations.

So, with that in mind, Wigan Council has recently adopted its first Historic Environment Strategy.

The strategy shows our dedication to our Historic Environment from the grand public buildings like Leigh Town Hall and our historic libraries to the surviving fabric of our working heritage from terraced workers houses to mining monuments.

We know some of our heritage is at risk like our mills and industrial buildings, but we also see the potential in them for new homes, new jobs and places of leisure, such as Wigan Pier.

The Historic Environment Strategy is not just a piece of paper, it’s a tool that has already been used to secure £3.5 million funding from Historic England for our Heritage Action Zones – one on King Street in Wigan and a community led scheme in Tyldesley.

These schemes aim to help create vibrant town centres for all, restoring their historic fabric to create special places where people can be proud of their environment and celebrate their culture, heritage and sport.

The key to this is working with you, our local communities, to help make this change happen.

We are dedicated to creating places that can be enjoyed by the people of the borough now and in the future.

We recognise that our historic places are important in giving people a sense of where they come from, their heritage and a sense of pride.

Over the next few years we will work to better understand and use our unique heritage as a catalyst for investment and regeneration.

This strategy really will benefit everyone in our borough by making sure local people are involved in our projects – such as the Heritage Action Zones on King Street in Wigan town centre and also in Tyldesley where we are supporting ‘For Tyldesley’ to seek funding and deliver exciting projects themselves.

It is important we celebrate our heritage so I urge you to have your say as part of the Big Listening Festival so we can truly understand what is important to you.

We have a great future in Wigan Borough and one that can be made stronger.

Through building on the legacy of our past we are aiming to deliver great benefits for Our People, Our Place and Our Future. We can’t wait to see what comes next!

Posted on Friday 10th September 2021
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