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Sep 42019

Managing the challenge of protecting coastal heritage in the face of climate change – Blackpool, 4th - 6th September 2019

About Sea Change

The aim of the Sea Change Conference is to bring together the international conservation community to understand the growing impact of climate change on the built heritage of coastal communities. It is hoped that this process will help identify any gaps in understanding where new research might be commissioned to further the resilience of coastal communities in protecting vulnerable heritage assets. The conference has four themes centred on cultural identity, resilience, sustainability and best practice which are aimed at bringing out relevant case studies and research for consideration.

Who will be attending

The conference will be aimed at local and national government policy makers, heritage bodies, practitioners, specialist interest groups and academics and will feature a range of speakers from diverse disciplines and professional backgrounds. The conference is being organised on behalf of World Monuments Fund by a consortium including Bournemouth University and World Monuments Fund Britain.



Why Blackpool?

Blackpool Piers one of 25 sites included on the 2018 World Monuments Watch in recognition of their vulnerability to climate change. The increased frequency and violence of storm surges in the Irish Sea have left the oldest (1864) in an increasingly fragile condition and contributed to structural problems with the other two, slightly later piers.

Why Now?

There is a significant body of research which considers the impacts of climate change on coastal geomorphology and marine environments. However, there is little research on the impact of climate change, specifically sea-level rise, increased intensity of extreme weather events, and changes in humidity levels, on cultural-heritage assets.

Despite a growing awareness of the wider impacts of climate change beyond rising sea levels and coastal erosion there remains a disturbing lack of engagement regarding the impacts of climate change on heritage assets by governments, practitioners, and academics. Whilst some governments have begun to look at the impacts of climate change on cultural heritage over the last ten years, there appears to be no real organised effort to deal with the challenges faced by coastal communities.

To express interest in submitting an abstract please contact Prof. John Darlington

To register your interest in attending the conference please contact

For any other queries please contact