The spaces between buildings - the Public Realm - have come under increasing scrutiny recently. The important contribution to economic development, regeneration, tourism and other aspects of the overall vitality of our towns and cities cannot be under-estimated.
The Forum has expressed concern about the quality of the public realm since it was formed in 1987 and a number of publications have addressed various aspects of it. At the 2002 Annual Conference we pledged to make it the main focus of our work in 2003, and this has been the theme running through the events and publications since then.
This publication identifies the issues surrounding management of the public realm in our historic towns and cities, looking at the problems and highlighting examples of good practice. It is clear that acheiving both quality and local distinctiveness in the historic built environment is vital to the success of historic towns, and the spaces between the buildings are of equal importance. The Forum believes that there is a need for greater co-ordination of the management of our public spaces and that the time has come for all stakeholders to work in partnership to ensure quality and local distinctiveness.
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