5-9 March 2013

The Centre for Heritage Management at Ahmedabad University held a five-day programme on Heritage Walks from March 5-9, 2013.  Twenty-two participants hailing from 15 different cities across India were part of the programme; equally as diverse were their professions ranging from officials in state tourism offices, to non-profit managers, to music producers, to volunteers.

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The programme lent a holistic view to developing heritage walks and its monuments and did so through a mix of activities including Ahmedabad Heritage Walk, site visits to Gandhi Ashram, Sarkhej Roza and Veechar Museum, visits to Heritage Houses, meetings in different venues of historic significance, presentations and peer-to-peer interaction.

Presentations included topics such as the role of government bodies in preservation of a city’s heritage, entrepreneurship and heritage walks, branding the city and walk, involving academic institutions to raise awareness, Managing and Marketing the heritage walk, the role of media in conveying the importance of heritage to the public as well as how to use it as an intervention. The program also incorporated practical training so a full-day (8 March) was spent visiting the historic city of Sidhpur, Gujarat and the participants were assigned different areas of the city where they toured the area, identified areas of significance, spoke with locals and formulated a walk of their own.

Finally, the program concluded with distribution of certificates. One of the participants summed the program up best in this quote, “a very well-organized programme, covering a range of topics.  The opportunity to interact with so many people from different professions working towards the same goal – preserving India’s heritage is rare and valuable. A tremendous amount of practical learning took place over the five days and I am full of new ideas of how to put them into practice at home.”