Riga Hosted Conference on industrial heritage and sustainable tourism development in Europe
The European Cultural Tourism Network (ECTN) held its 8th annual international conference on ‘Industrial Heritage: Prospects for Sustainable Tourism Development in Europe’ on 18-19 September 2015 in Riga, Latvia. The conference, which was organised in the framework of the 2015 European Industrial and Technical Heritage Year, gathered top-level representatives from European Federations and experts from various countries. Pierre Laconte, Europa Nostra’s Council member and Chairman of Europa Nostra’s Industrial and Engineering Heritage Committee, was amongst the main speakers.
The latest trends in the industrial heritage field, including innovation, creativity, research and development, design and sustainable tourism product development, as well as the major challenges for the future, were discussed during the event. The conference provided a great opportunity to share relevant experience, promote best practices and make practical recommendations for preserving, restoring and enhancing industrial heritage for sustainable tourism development.
Pierre Laconte, Adriaan Linters, General Secretary of the European Federation of Associations of Industrial and Technical Heritage (E-FAITH), David Morgan, President of FEDECRAIL, Derek Robbins, from Bournemouth University in the UK, and Andris Biedrins, from the Industrial Heritage Trust of Latvia, presented their views and gave representative examples, while involving the audience in an open discussion.
Experts and professionals from the European Routes of Industrial Heritage in Germany, Belgium, Romania, Serbia, Russia, Croatia and Greece participated in the conference. Raimonds Aleksejenko, Deputy State Secretary from the Ministry of Economics of the Republic of Latvia, was in attendance.
Study visits to industrial heritage sites in the Vidzeme region, such as the Ligatne Paper Mill Factory, the Felt Factory, the Museum of living Silver and the old Firefighter’s Depot in Limbazi city, were undertaken after the event.
The conference on ‘Industrial Heritage: Prospects for Sustainable Tourism Development in Europe’ was organised in the framework of the 2015 European Industrial and Technical Heritage Year, an initiative promoted by E-FAITH and supported by the Council of Europe.