The research “Valuing the Welsh Historic Environment” by, ECOTEC Research and Consulting Ltd, shows that, in addition to the direct economic benefits provided by important historic assets, there are significant indirect impacts in supporting wider economic, social and environment priorities, for example as a catalyst to investment and improving skills that enable more people to get work. Much of the share of the economic impacts relates to tourism expenditure attributable to the historic environment as many visitors are attracted to Wales because of its wealth of heritage attractions.
The report concludes that the Welsh historic environment is a valuable asset which must be actively cared for and promoted. It also stresses that once these assets have been lost or forgotten they can rarely be recovered.
Minister for Heritage, Alun Ffred Jones, said:
"I welcome this important report which looks in depth at the value of Wales' heritage. Wales has a rich and diverse heritage which has great value to those who live here in many different ways. Clearly it is important to conserve this environment for social and educational reasons. But sometimes what is not recognised and what this report shows is that our heritage also has an important economic impact, both through the benefits it can bring to local people and the income generated through visitors.
“The Assembly Government recognises the importance of the historic environment and through Cadw we continue to ensure that it is maintained for future generations. Heritage is a big pull for tourists in Wales, for example our recent visitor survey showed that 72% of visitors went to castles, stately houses and/or historic sites during their stay. Through our £19m Heritage Tourism project we are also working hard to maximise the economic value of heritage through tourism and ensure that our heritage is accessible and enjoyed by visitors and people who live in Wales."