I attended the Heritage Debate at Magdalene College, Cambridge last night. It was a good reminder of the importance of the value of heritage to our society as well as to the economy. Dame Fiona Reynolds of the National Trust was particularly good at reminding us of the need to see heritage in a wider, indeed holistic, setting. James Berresford of VisitEngland was pragmatic about the type of heritage sites that attract visitors (though he was also very positive about working with the voluntary sector).
More interesting were the related informal conversations. One in particular revolved around the Crosby Garrett helmet and its inclusion in Bronze! at the Royal Academy. Here is a major piece of Roman heritage that has lost its context, and, if it was indeed found in Cumbria, it is unable to be displayed alongside other Roman finds in Carlisle. It is a pity that some publicly funded bodies have not spoken out strongly about heritage asset stripping.