Global Britain: How the UK is Protecting Cultural Heritage in Fragile States
Author: Lauren Pizzey
On Monday 20th May, The Coalition for Global Prosperity were delighted to host a packed room in parliament to discuss the UK’s leading work in protecting cultural heritage in fragile states.
The Coalition heard from senior speakers including; Dr Hartwig Fischer (Director, the British Museum), Tom Tugendhat MP (Chair, Foreign Affairs Committee), Tim Loughton MP (Chair, British Museum APPG), Lord Collins (Shadow International Development Minister), Shoshana Stewart (CEO, Turquoise Mountain), Jonathan Tubb (Iraq Director, British Museum), Stephen Stenning (Director, British Council) and was chaired by the BBC’s Kirsty Lang.
The event, co-hosted by the Coalition, the British Council and the British Museum, brought together politicians, diplomats and leading experts in the field to discuss the important work that the UK’s Cultural Protection Fund is doing to preserve culture and artifacts in fragile and conflict states, in particular Iraq, Afghanistan and Syria.
Theo Clarke, CEO of the Coalition for Global prosperity, opened the event discussing the proud history the UK has of protecting arts and culture in times of conflict. She introduced Director of the British Museum Dr Hartwig Fischer, who provided opening remarks on the work of the British Museum.
The audience then heard from Director of Culture and Development at the British Council, Stephen Stenning, who spoke of the importance of the Cultural Heritage Fund, funded by UK Aid, highlighting that it was essential in achieving the Sustainable Development Goals.
Following opening speeches, the BBC’s Kirsty Lang chaired a panel of experts on this issue: Tom Tugendhat MP (Chair, Foreign Affairs Select Committee), Tim Loughton MP (Chair, APPG on British Museum), Lord Collins of Highbury, Jonathan Tubb (Iraq Director, British Museum) and Shoshana Stewart (CEO, Turquoise Mountain).
After the panel discussion there was an audience Q&A with the senior audience interventions from business leaders and former diplomats. Questions centred around the issue of post-colonial disposition in the Middle East, cultural diplomacy as a form of soft power and the need for diplomacy in the region.