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9th March 2008
The Chief Executive of English Heritage, Dr Simon Thurley, will be in Ripon on Friday 11 April to give a lecture to mark Ripon Civic Society’s 40th anniversary.

Dr Thurley, who was appointed to his post at English Heritage in 2002, will give a talk entitled ‘Goodbye Old England – does anyone out there care?’. The event takes place in Holy Trinity Church, Kirkby Road, Ripon, starting at 7.30 pm.

Well-known for his television appearances – including his Channel Four programme ‘Power Houses’ about the White House, the Kremlin and 10 Downing Street, ‘The Lost Buildings of Britain’ and the ‘Flying through Time’ series – Dr Thurley was previously Director of The Museum of London and, before that, Curator of Historic Royal Palaces. A noted architectural historian, he is the author of several books, including the best-selling ‘Royal Palaces of Tudor England’ published in 1993, ‘Whitehall Palace’ and ‘Hampton Court: a Social and Architectural History’. He is currently engaged on a book about Sir Christopher Wren.

English Heritage has 420 sites open to the public and a membership of more than 600,000. Dr. Thurley has set the organisation the challenge to introduce a more balanced way to protect the best of our heritage for future generations, with new principles, policies and systems in the planning system and changes in the law to remove the red tape that encumbers heritage protection.

David Winpenny, Co-Chairman of Ripon Civic Society, says, ‘Simon Thurley is one of the most dynamic and important figures in heritage conservation in this country, and we are delighted that he has agreed to mark our 40th anniversary with this talk. It promises to be both illuminating and controversial. He has also offered to answer questions, so this is a great opportunity to find out what English Heritage has in mind for the planning system.

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