Edinburgh World Heritage - News Article


Director's Notes - May 2014

Monthly update from EWH Director Adam Wilkinson.

May 29, 2014

We are delighted that works have started on the High School Yard Steps project, involving the reopening and conservation of the steps, new ironwork in order that they can be closed at night, and a new art work, generously given by artist Callum Innes, which will help improve the security of the steps. We don’t know quite how the art work is going to appear, but know it will be very special indeed.

Projects such as this must, to the eyes of the public, appear to just happen. The reality is very different. We started work preparing for the project over 3 years ago. As with any project, one must gain the necessary consents, but most people’s experience of a project involves a single owner. Here, as with most of our projects things are more complex (which is why we do them). The project leader here worked, as all colleagues do, to coordinate, cajole, cuddle and congratulate a huge range of organisations, agencies and people, including universities, the City’s listed buildings team, its roads department and street lighting department, the artist, a local school, the architect, lighting designer and contractor.

There is one other project quietly underway at the moment, and one I wish we’d be able to start a couple of years ago (oh for more space for more pairs of hands). Intern Ellyn Matta has been researching the history of our organisation, a major part of which is recording the memories of those involved in the conservation and restoration of the New and Old Towns from the 1970s to the current day. The rescue of the New Town and the revival of the Old Town are important and inspirational stories to tell. I cannot wait to see the finished project.

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