UNESCO removes Liverpool from world heritage list – News Vibe24

    UNESCO removes Liverpool from world heritage list - Times of India
    LIVERPOOL: The UN cultural agency UNESCO on Wednesday voted narrowly to remove the Liverpool waterfront from the list of World Heritage Sites, citing concerns about overdevelopment, including plans for a new football stadium.
    In committee talks chaired by China, 13 delegates voted in favor of the proposal and five against – just one more than the two-thirds majority required to remove a site from the global list.
    “This means that the Liverpool Commercial City website is being removed from the World Heritage List,” said Tian Xuejun, chairman of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.
    This is only the third such departure, following previous decisions affecting Oman and Germany, followed by two days of committee discussions that revealed tensions over how cities around the world can retain their past as they move forward.
    Liverpool Mayor Steve Rotheram called it “a step backwards” taken by officials “on the other side of the world”.
    “Places like Liverpool must not face the dichotomy between preserving the legacy or revitalizing left-wing communities – and the wealth of jobs and opportunities that come with it,” he said.
    Liverpool City Council official Harry Doyle told AFP he was “very disappointed with the results”, but said the city’s heritage was “still here to stay”.
    “We are even more disappointed that UNESCO has rejected our offer to come to the city and see for itself the work that continues,” Doyle said.
    “They have made this decision individually in half the world.”
    The UK government has also expressed frustration with the decision, saying Liverpool “still deserve World Heritage status”.
    However, UNESCO representatives have heard that reconstruction plans, including high-rise buildings, will “irreparably destroy” the port’s heritage in north-west England.
    The International Council on Monuments and Sites, which advises UNESCO on the heritage list, said the UK government “has been repeatedly asked” to provide stronger assurances about the city’s future.
    The planned new stadium for Everton Football Club has been approved by the government without a public inquiry and “is the latest example of a major project that is completely contrary to UNESCO’s goals,” he said.
    Several countries had backed the UK, agreeing it would be a “radical” step in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic and urging more time for a new city council elected in May.
    A corruption scandal linked to the financing of the renaissance had flooded the leadership of the old town, forcing the national government to intervene temporarily before the local elections in May.
    Proponents of Liverpool’s abolition included Australia, whose Great Barrier Reef list is under threat at this year’s UNESCO talks.
    On the contrary, Norway said that while it was “painfully aware” of the conflicts between the development and preservation of the heritage, a “delicate balance” was possible, which was lacking in Liverpool.
    Liverpool waterfront and docks were listed by UNESCO in 2004, following an ambitious renaissance after decades of decline in one of the cradles of Britain’s Industrial Revolution.
    However, since 2012 the agency has locked horns with UK development officials. He urged the city to reduce the height of the building and reconsider the proposed new stage for Everton in an abandoned harbor, warning of “significant loss of its authenticity and integrity”.
    The waterfront is the site of a statue honoring the four members of the Beatles, the most famous cultural export from a city rich in musical history.
    Allan Ellis, a British tourist visiting the city, rejected the UNESCO decision.
    “What matters is the true history of Liverpool,” he told AFP. “People do not come here because it is UNESCO. They come here because it was where the Beatles came from.”


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