1.         Giant's Causeway and Causeway Coast (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland) (N 369bis)

Year of inscription on the World Heritage List  1986

Criteria  (vii)(viii)

Year(s) of inscription on the List of World Heritage in Danger  N/A

Previous Committee Decisions  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/369/documents/

International Assistance

Requests approved: 0
Total amount approved: USD 0
For details, see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/369/assistance/

UNESCO Extra-budgetary Funds

N/A

Previous monitoring missions

UNESCO/IUCN mission 16 to 19 February 2003

Factors affecting the property identified in previous reports

Visitor centre developments; Lack of a Management Plan and management system.

Illustrative material  see page http://whc.unesco.org/en/list/369/

Conservation issues presented to the World Heritage Committee in 2005

On 4 February 2005 the State Party provided as a follow-up to the 2003 mission, a copy of the final Draft of the Management Plan.  The Management Plan commissioned by the Environment and Heritage Service of the Department of the Environment forms a part of the Ministerial initiative announced in April 2003 by Northern Ireland Office Ministers.  The two other parts of the initiative are: a Tourism Master plan for the Causeway Coast and Glens area (published in April 2004), and an international competition for the design of a replacement visitor centre (to be launched in 2005).

The State Party reports that the Management Plan does not include planning policies for either the World Heritage property itself or for its wider setting.  These policies will be contained within the Department of the Environment’s Draft Northern Area Plan, to be published in 2005, and will be subject to public consultation and, in all probability, public inquiry through a separate process.  The formal recognition of the setting through this statutory process will replace the interim 4km zone in which all proposals for development are carefully scrutinised by the Department’s Planning Service and its advisers.

Redevelopment of the visitor centre has not yet taken place and it is planned to hold an architectural competition for the design.  The State Party proposes a new structure to ensure that the property is managed in a unified manner and that the Management Plan is implemented effectively.  The resources to implement the Management Plan will have to come from a variety of sources.  A partnership approach is suggested to realise its speedy and full implementation. 

Detailed consultations with a wide range of stakeholders meant that the time needed to prepare the Management Plan had taken longer than expected.  However, IUCN noted that the plan conformed to the recommendations of the World Heritage Centre/IUCN mission of February 2003, and addresses the conservation requirements of the property and the needs of the visitor, both in terms of access and information.  The plan further establishes a vision for the property and five underlying principles that serve to guide its protection, management and enjoyment.  It thus provides an important context for the proposed new visitor centre.  The Management Plan provides a sound basis for the future management of the World Heritage property, and will serve as the foundation for a more effective and cohesive approach through involving and respecting the individual roles and responsibilities of the various stakeholders.

Analysis and Conclusions of the World Heritage Centre and IUCN

N/A

Decision Adopted: 29 COM 7B.27

The World Heritage Committee,

1. Having examined Document WHC-05/29.COM/7B.Rev,

2. Recalling its Decision 27 COM 7B.21 adopted at its 27th session (UNESCO, 2003),

3. Commends the State Party of the United Kingdom for the progress made in finalizing the management plan and for the initial steps taken in its implementation;

4. Expresses satisfaction that the key issues raised in the joint World Heritage Centre/IUCN mission of 2003 have been addressed as well as other conservation needs of the property;

5. Calls upon the State Party to expedite efforts to finalize the redevelopment of the visitor centre and report to the World Heritage Centre on progress made.