Wltshire Council has just published an advert for an Independent Chair of Stonehenge and Avebury World Heritage Site Partnership. It’s because it has been agreed that both parts of the WHS should work more closely together with input from English Heritage, the National Trust and Wiltshire Council so co-ordination is needed. So “The post holder will champion Stonehenge and Avebury’s World Heritage status.”
Hurrah! What could be more justified or better timed? The combined WHS is a huge earner of foreign currency (which will soon rocket as the Stonehenge admission fee goes up to £13.90) and Avebury has recently been judged by “Which Magazine” as the second best World Heritage site in the whole world.
But the advert also says:
“It may on occasion be appropriate for them to attend the Stonehenge and Avebury local Steering Committees.”
“It is hard to set prescriptive time requirements but candidates should expect to be able to dedicate at least two days per month to the role.”
Shouldn’t the “champion” of Stonehenge and Avebury be full time and paid and attend all important committees? Why is he being asked to play such a diminished role and who will be making the decisions on the 29 days of each month when he’s absent? Let’s hope he proves more than a “token”. In fact, let’s have someone immensely strong minded whose expertise lies not in archaeology but in running a big company and promotion and marketing on a global scale – and who will absolutely insist on going to all the main meetings!