This title was first published in 2002.Employing a range of case studies from three northern European countries - England, Sweden and The Netherlands - this captivating book explores the process of heritage conservation from theoretical initiation to practical expression. It traces the threads from the origination of conservation ideas by innovative individuals, their adoption by voluntary groups identified with particular conservation aims, to the inclusion of conservation policies in national legislation and international convention. A common cultural heritage underpins the diffusion of ideas across different systems within a similar time-scale. The ideas have been assimilated and adopted to differing degrees, providing the opportunity for questioning both the strength and purpose in heritage conservation, and the influence of the social and political context. This will be a stimulating read for an international audience of conservationists, heritage policy makers, conservation architects, planners and developers, urban design and planning scholars, and European and cultural studies academics.
’The case-study texts of professional tasks and practices are enough to recommend a reading of the book. It could well form the bases of one or several study tours, at least I feel tempted to do some travelling...The strength of these studies is the close connection between on the one hand concrete studies of the material culture, its characteristics and historical connotations, and on the other hand the images of this material culture that are claimed to be heritage. This gives a possibility to bridge at least part of the gap between practice and theory, giving room for professional and critical reflection.’ Ola Wetterberg, Chalmers University of Technology and the National Heritage Board, Sweden 'This is an interesting and usable contribution. The book's structure and content are very relevant and its sections well-structured, with useful introductions. The writing is generally fluent and informative. Ashworth and Phelps provide a helpful introduction to the cultural construction of heritage conservation.' Urban Studies