8. Action Plan


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 1.1:  Ensure that the WHS Coordinating Committee can effectively coordinate the management of the WHS

1.1.1 Review the Terms of Reference and membership of the committee

Annual Review

WHS Committee

1.1.2 Create WHS Operations Group to deal with operational issues related to the site.

Year 1 Membership

WHS Coordinator

1.1.3 Seek continued funding for WHS Staff

Annual Review

University/ Cathedral Finance Officers/DCC

Objective 1.2: Monitor  and  report on the condition and status of the WHS

1.2.1 Review what has been accomplished from this action plan annually and update.

Annual Review

WHS Coordinator

1.2.2 Respond to external stakeholder reporting requirements


WHS Coordinator

1.2.3 Review and update the Management Plan every 6 years


WHS Coordinating Committee

 Objective 1.3: Develop and maintain links with other regional, national and international World Heritage Sites and World Heritage UK

1.3.1 Share professional experience and skills, and implement joint projects when appropriate.


2016—30th WHS Anniversary

WHS Coordinator


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 2.1: Ensure that the integrity of the site and what makes it of Outstanding Universal Value is identified, recognised, and understood.

2.1.1 Continue to research, document, conserve, publish and to broadcast and  use of key aspects of attributes and significance as identified in the mgt. plan


WHS Coordinator

Supported by WHS Committee members  and WHS Stakeholders


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 3.1: Preserve and Increase awareness of the intangible qualities and significances of WHS


3.1.1 Promote the continuing primary uses of the WHS, for Christian worship and for education.

Yr 1 - Status report


IMEMS/ WHS Coordinator/ University Estates/

Canon Librarian Durham Cathedral/ Master of the Choristers and Organist/ Music Department

3.1.2 Continue to research, document, conserve publish, and broadcast the WHS' intangible values, qualities and significances.


WHS Coordinator


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 4.1: Conserve the setting of the WHS and encourage appropriate and sensitive development   and support the ongoing regeneration of Durham and its environs

4.1.1.To cooperate with partners to pursue adequate support for an inner setting area around a potentially  expanded WHS core area in lieu of a buffer zone

Year 1-6

World Heritage Site Coordinator, Partners including Durham County Council

4.1.2 To provide detailed assessment and justification to increase understanding of the inner setting through views  and general analysis.

Year 2—Liaise with partners and Durham County Council on potential Supplementary Planning Documents

World Heritage Site Coordinator, Partners including Durham County Council

4.1.3. To assess  view corridors to the WHS, skylines and backdrops to views, identifying their character and significance to the WHS.

Year 2/3—Liaise with partners/Durham County Council on potential Supplementary Planning Documents

World Heritage Site Coordinator, Partners including Durham County Council

4.1.4. To promote adequate assessment of harm by development proposals on the OUV of the site including views and the inner and outer setting and in particular promote the use of the International Council on Monuments and Site’s (ICOMOS) Heritage Impact Assessment

Year 1—Liaise with Durham County and Partners

Year 2/3—Liaise with partners and Durham County Council on potential Supplementary Planning Documents

World Heritage Site Coordinator, Partners including Durham County Council

4.1.5. To assist constructive conservation by making available to prospective developers, descriptions of significance and key factors forming the character of the townscape that supports the site’s OUV.

Ongoing/Year 1 –Liaise with developers where possible using WHS Management Plan

Year 2/3 Produce synopsis of relevant significance, Liaise with partners and Durham County Council on potential Supplementary Planning Documents

World Heritage Site Coordinator

World Heritage Site Coordinator, Partners including Durham County Council

4.1.6. The WHS coordinator will respond to planning proposals that are considered to impact upon the WHS or its setting.


WHS Coordinator

4.1.7. To further the conservation of the WHS riverbanks and woodlands, and associated structures.

Year 1 Scope

Year 2 programme priorities

Year 3, project development

 World Heritage Coordinator, Historic England, Durham Cathedral, Durham University

Objective 4.2 Pursue expansion of the WHS Boundary

4.2.1. To review the inner and outer riverbanks  for an expanded WHS area.

Liaise Year 1

WHS Coordinator

Supported by WHS Committee members


4.2.2 To advance the detailed justification for inclusion of this area in an expanded WHS and the necessary ICOMOS and UNESCO ratification providing that this does not trigger reapplication for WHS status

Liaise Year 1

Apply Year 2

Adopt Year 6

WHS Coordinator

Supported by WHS Committee members


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

 Objective 5.1 Determine the profile of current visitors and patterns of visitation to the WHS.

5.1.1 Conduct primary audience research

Yr 1

WHS Coordinator/ Visitor Centre Coordinator

Objective 5.2: Increase visitor numbers and diversity to WHS

5.2.1  Develop a visitor engagement strategy

Yr 2 - Share data, identify gaps

WHS Coordinator/Visit County Durham/Cathedral/ University

5.2.2 Continue to provide and support facilities and events at the WHS

Yr 3 Integrated signage strategy


WHS Coordinator/ Experience Durham/ Education Officers/ Cathedral Head of Marketing and Events

5.2.3 Develop volunteer engagement in the WHS


WHS Visitor Centre Coordinator, Volunteer Managers Durham Cathedral and Palace Green Library

5.2.4 Enhance links to local attractions (in the setting of the WHS and in the City as a whole), to develop a stronger Durham Heritage visitor experience linked to the broader Durham leisure experience.

Annual – programme of WHS Visitor Centre events

WHS Visitor Centre Coordinator, Durham Cathedral, Durham University, Visit County Durham

Objective 5.3: Increase visitor engagement with WHS

5.3.1 Continue to support and improve visitor offer on the WHS

Yr 2 - Joint Ticketing Review


WHS Coordinator/ Group Travel Officer- Durham Cathedral/ Castle Curator/ Head of Heritage Collections DU/ Castle Operations Manager/ Castle Accomm. Coordinator

Objective 5.4 Maximise the benefits brought to the region by the sustainable and appropriate use of the WHS as a visitor attraction, and maximise the benefit to the WHS of the local and regional development of Durham's tourist offer.

5.4.1 Increase the recognition/use of the WHS as a local and regional icon

Year 3 – WHS Communication Kit


WHS Coordinator/ Visit County Durham, Cathedral & University Press & Marketing Departments/DCC

5.4.2 Encourage institutions located on the WHS to adopt a more public-facing approach

Yr 3 - Increase range of events recognising WHS


WHS Coordinator, Durham University, Durham Cathedral

5.4.3 Work with partners to integrate the WHS within local and regional tourist strategies to maximise regional benefits of the WHS as a tourism driver.

Yr 2 - Review strategy references


WHS Committee

Visit County Durham

Objective 5.5: Improve visitor understanding of the site and provide educational opportunities.

5.5.1 Develop an Interpretation Plan, to improve/consolidate interpretation of the WHS

Yr 2

Cathedral & Palace Green Education teams, DCC , Visit County Durham

5.5.2 Ensure that the WHS continues to provide opportunities for education and training, in a manner that is inclusive and accessible

Yr 2 – develop programme.


University and Cathedral Education Departments


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 6.1: Support high quality research that enhances the understanding and management of the WHS

6.1.1  Create and implement a WHS research strategy

Year 1 – Develop         programme.


IMEMS, other research bodies/researchers as      relevant


 ActionTime FrameResponsible Person/Organisation

Objective 7:1: Ensure that all elements of the site mentioned in the statement of significance are adequately protected

7.1.1 Review the conservation philosophy for the WHS as a starting point for appropriate conservation and care

Year 2 - Liaise and coordinate activities

WHS Coordinator/Durham University/Durham Cathedral/St John’s College

7.1.2 Develop and deliver emergency plan for WHS site

Immediate/Year 1- Check on individual site plan status

Year 2-  Liaise and coordinate plans

WHS Operations Group/ University Business Continuity Manager/ Chapter Clerk.

7.1.3 Implement delivery of recommendations from Conservation Management plans and Historic Buildings Appraisals (HBAs) for the Castle Walls, Riverbanks, Cathedral, Claustral Buildings, Castle and Palace Green

Yr 3 - Castle Walls feasibility plan

Year 5 – Other WHS buildings conservation statement

Yr 6 + - Implementation

Durham University/ Durham Cathedral

7.1.4 Promote the use of sympathetic materials, styles and techniques by all development projects within the WHS

Yr 2 - Strategy


WHS Coordinator, Durham County Council/ Durham University/ Durham Cathedral/WHS Operations Group

7.1.5 Enhance education initiatives to inform building owners, managers, commissioners

Yr 1- lecture series

Year 2 – Identify good practice guides.


WHS Co-ordinator/ Durham University/ Durham Cathedral/City of Durham Trust

7.1.6 Develop conservation statements for all WHS secondary buildings and ensure that refurbishment works take these into account

Y3 - Identify buildings

Year 6 - delivery programme

Cathedral Architect/ University Estates and Buildings

7.1.7 Develop conservation statements for the open spaces of the WHS

Y3 - programme

Yr 3 – Yr 6 + Implement

WHS Coordinator/Durham Cathedral/Durham University/DCC

Objective 7.2: Continue to develop and implement the high quality management of the Peninsula's archaeological and architectural history and collections resources

7.2.1 Encourage archaeological investigations beyond the boundaries of the Cathedral precinct to include the entire WHS

Yr 2 – Liaise

Yr 3- identify priorities


Archaeology Department/ IMEMS/University Archaeological Services/ Cathedral Archaeologist/ County Archaeologist/ Historic England/DCC

7.2.2 Ensure sharing of best practice, information and research across stakeholders involved in archaeological activities

Yr 1 – Scoping

Y3 – Coordinate information sharing

County Archaeologist/ Cathedral Archaeologist/ WHS Co-ordinator

7.2.3 Facilitate and support best practice in collections management across stakeholders in the WHS

Yr 2 – Scoping

Yr 3 – Initiative development

Yr 4 + - Implement

Cathedral & University Heads of Property/ Cathedral & University Heads of Collections/University Director of Culture

Objective 7.3: Improve physical access to the WHS

7.3.1 Improve physical access to the WHS for users with disabilities and their carers

Yr 1- Highlight any immediate action

Year 3 – Audit

Year 4 – Target priorities

Cathedral Architect/ Director of Estates and Buildings, Durham University/ Durham City Access for All Group

7.3.2 Address traffic congestion on the peninsula

Year 3

Year 3 Shared services strategy

Durham University/ Durham Cathedral/ WHS Coordinator/DCC