Heritage At The Heart: Heritage Council Strategy 2018-2022

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The Heritage Council is pleased to announce the publication of its new five-year strategic plan, which sets out its vision for Irish heritage and maps the route towards realising that vision.  

Heritage at the Heart is the fifth strategic plan published by the Heritage Council since its establishment under the Heritage Act in 1995. Building on the achievements of previous plans, it is an ambitious and forward-looking document, which introduces new initiatives and offers a clearly stated vision for the future. 

The Heritage Council’s vision is that by 2022, heritage will be at the heart of Irish society and decision-making and that Ireland will be internationally recognised as a centre of excellence in heritage management, conservation and community engagement. In order to realise this vision for the future, we will focus on 1) advancing national heritage priorities, 2) nurturing belonging through a sense of identity and place and 3) ensuring a vibrant heritage sector. 

Heritage is the steady pulse of contemporary Ireland. Its relevance is palpable at local level where it drives economies, stimulates innovation and is a focal point for local pride and well being. In order to ensure the continuing relevance of heritage in Irish society and economy, we aim to foster a coherent heritage sector that is resourced, trained, connected and capable of taking care of our heritage. 

This Strategic Plan was conceived in consultation with wide range organisations and groups and individuals, including those still at school – the decision makers of the future. The result is a strategy that is responsive to the current social and political context, alert to the voices of young people and committed to providing leadership in the areas such as heritage-led regeneration, heritage interpretation and research. 

Heritage is the root of our individual and collective identities, but it is also the seed from which fresh connections will grow. Our new strategic plan aims to nurture a sense of inclusivity and belonging based on the vital connections between people and place. 

Encouraged by the prominence of heritage in recent government initiatives such as Creative Ireland, the National Landscape Strategy and Project Ireland 2040, the Heritage Council will continue to work with a range of partners to advance national heritage priorities and support the development of sustainable approaches to conserving, recording and managing our heritage. 

We are optimistic about the future of Heritage in Ireland and very much look forward to the formal launch of Heritage at the Heart by Minister for Culture Heritage and the Gaeltacht, Josepha Madigan TD, in the near future.