In 1986 Stonehenge and Avebury were among the first seven sites in the UK to be inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List, recognising them as places of exceptional importance to all humanity.
In 2016, English Heritage, the National Trust, the Wiltshire Museum, CBA Wessex, the RSPB and others are all helping to celebrate this anniversary with events taking place throughout the year. The highlight will be a conference taking place in Devizes on Saturday 19 and Sunday 20 November.
Speakers will include: Dr Alison Sheridan (National Museums of Scotland), Dr Serge Cassen (University of Nantes), Prof Tim Darvill (University of Bournemouth), Prof Vince Gaffney (University of Bradford), Dr Josh Pollard (University of Southampton), Julian Richards (Archaeologist and TV Presenter) and many more. The Conference will aim to celebrate the achievements of the past 30 years and look forward to what further discoveries we may find in the future.
The Conference is open to anyone and tickets can be booked using Eventbrite.
More information can be found about the Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site on the website www.stonehengeandaveburywhs.org/30th-anniversary-conference/
Over the past 30 years there have been a number of achievements by the many partners who share in the protection and enhancement of the Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site.
- Around 750 ha of agricultural land in WHS have been reverted to pasture with a great deal of support from Defra/Natural England. Not only does this help to protect fragile archaeological remains but has also had the benefit of enhancing biodiversity.
- A huge amount of archaeological research has revealed more about the landscapes of the WHS and expanded our knowledge and understanding of the Site
- Silbury Hill was stabilised and conserved in 2007, making good the work undertaken by antiquarians of the 18th and 19th centuries and archaeologists of the mid 20th century alike.
- In 2012 the Site was able to fulfil the UK Government’s commitment made at the time of inscription to close the A344 right next to the Stones at Stonehenge
- A new award winning Visitor Centre opened at Stonehenge in 2013 and now receives over 1.3million visitors per year.
- The governance of the WHS was strengthened with the creation of a Stonehenge and Avebury WHS Coordination Unit in March 2014 and the creation of a WHS Partnership Panel to oversee the work of the two parts of the WHS in February 2014.
- In May 2015, Stonehenge and Avebury WHS produced their first joint Stonehenge and Avebury WHS Management Plan
To celebrate English Heritage are offering 30 people the chance to see Stonehenge from above in a tethered hot air balloon. Visit their website for details
The Stonehenge Tourist Guide