Conservation and Cultural Tourism: Conflicts and Solutions

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The conflict between mass cultural tourism, economic growth, increasing visitor access and conservation creates an awkward tension between keeping the vitality of places while conserving vulnerable historic fabric and immaterial heritage, which is subject to decay, and degradation. The economic benefits of cultural heritage tourism as a resource are undeniable. In the UK in 2017, inbound tourism to the UK experienced a sustained period of growth, with record numbers of overseas visitors (23.1m) for the January-July period, up 8% on 2016 and up 9% in volume terms. Heritage tourism generated £16.4 billion in spending by domestic and international visitors; repair and maintenance of historic buildings directly generated £9.6 billion in construction sector output, and provided employment for 278,000 people1. The influx has particularly been felt among the must-see tourist attractions around the UK, with Stonehenge experiencing a strong uplift in visitors driven by overseas tourists’, with total visitor numbers to Stonehenge in 2017 reaching a peak at approximately 1.58 million visits2. However, there are severe environmental impacts on tangible and intangible cultural inheritance at many sites to the extent that emerging evidence indicates that ever-increasing visitor numbers threaten historic monuments and important cultural landscapes. This chapter uses original case studies to investigate these issues and conflicts and recommends a series of solutions that may be applicable in a global context..
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationConservation/Consumption:
Subtitle of host publicationPreserving the Tangible and Intangible Values:
EditorsDonatella Fiorani, Giovanni Franco, Loughlin Kealy, Stefano Musso, Miguel Calvo-Salve
Place of PublicationHasselt, Belgium
PublisherEuropean Association for Architectural Education
Number of pages11
ISBN (Print) ISBN 978-2-930301-67-9
Publication statusPublished - 27 Sept 2019
EventEAAE Thematic Network on Conservation: Workshop VI - CESUGA University College, A Coruna, Spain
Duration: 27 Sept 201730 Sept 2017

Publication series

NameEAAE Transactions on Architectural Education no. 66
ISSN (Print)930301679


ConferenceEAAE Thematic Network on Conservation
CityA Coruna
Internet address


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