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Given that tourism is a very small part of the islands GDP how much should we spend on "Heritage" ?

It seems to me that the sums involved in preserving the past, with tacit reliances on "tourism" is totally disproportionate. The prom has cost many millions more than envisaged, partly due to rails for horse trams and of course is way over time too. The knock on effect of delays has been damaging for business without doubt. Relaying the electric tram lines and importing labour has cost millions, horse tram sheds, steam railway, cabbage, etc etc !

Yesterday the Heritage Rail was given a further £642,000. I have no idea what the totals are of all the "Heritage" the public funds but when is enough, enough ?

When frontline services are starved of cash, at what point is any politico going to stand up and say that nice to haves, have to be second to frontline ?

 

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All good points. I still do wonder where all the cash comes from? It seems to be spent like it is never likely to run out. But even then, when money is being spent on bridges over Glen Wyllin, yet the

Good social facilities like the NSC, or museums, improve mental and physical wellbeing. Repairing the old railway lines and turning them into good quality cycle paths improves mental and physical well

Well they are obviously planning on opening a Mercedes Bus museum in 2080 with a fantastic display of every model ever manufactured.

I understand that people dislike the Government spending on the Heritage Railways, however, once you stop funding them how long before you stop funding places like Castle Rushen, Cregneash, Peel Castle, The Manx Museum and to a lesser extent the House of Manannan (which was not in a great state last time I visited)?

Without the heritage attractions there would be even less for people to do on the Island and please do not give me the BS that volunteers and/or private business would step in.  There are not enough people on the Island with the time, interest or skills to maintain the heritage attractions.

I think that the Government should explore working with volunteer and special interests groups but do not forget that they need skilled workers as well.

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All good points. I still do wonder where all the cash comes from? It seems to be spent like it is never likely to run out. But even then, when money is being spent on bridges over Glen Wyllin, yet there are clear funding gaps in areas like social care and health, it does make you wonder where the moral compass swings

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8 minutes ago, Derek Flint said:

All good points. I still do wonder where all the cash comes from? It seems to be spent like it is never likely to run out. But even then, when money is being spent on bridges over Glen Wyllin, yet there are clear funding gaps in areas like social care and health, it does make you wonder where the moral compass swings

Nail ... Head !!!!!!

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1 hour ago, asitis said:

When frontline services are starved of cash, at what point is any politico going to stand up and say that nice to haves, have to be second to frontline ?

 

It's not just the actual cash. It's the attitude and style of how these services are delivered and more importantly managed. I think we have lost some of our way on public services and how they are actually delivered too meet needs. It is an issue that seems to inevitably gets mixed into the "too many civil servants" argument.  Needs rethinking.

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I won't comment on the too many civil servants scenario, except to say that if we have adequate, or more than adequate staffing levels, then surely it is not too much to expect that the results we get from administration in all areas is high. The reality is we are failing in many areas and wasting huge amounts of money whilst doing so !

In terms of failure this administration and leadership has to be one of, if not the poorest I have seen. We need some politicians who will stand up and ask difficult questions, not the establishment nodding dogs and the vestiges of the "old boys club" who still frequent our parliament !

Sadly we have, or indeed had, the money to be so much better in all areas but incompetence and waste is tolerated with impunity throughout Government !

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2 hours ago, Derek Flint said:

All good points. I still do wonder where all the cash comes from? It seems to be spent like it is never likely to run out. But even then, when money is being spent on bridges over Glen Wyllin, yet there are clear funding gaps in areas like social care and health, it does make you wonder where the moral compass swings

I wasn't really considering the re-instatement of bridges on the old Peel line as being part of a heritage project.  To me they seem more focused on encouraging people to be more active and providing a usable and safe cycle route between Peel and erm... the Quarterbridge.

1 hour ago, asitis said:

In terms of failure this administration and leadership has to be one of, if not the poorest I have seen. We need some politicians who will stand up and ask difficult questions, not the establishment nodding dogs and the vestiges of the "old boys club" who still frequent our parliament !

Sadly we have, or indeed had, the money to be so much better in all areas but incompetence and waste is tolerated with impunity throughout Government !

I think you would be hard pushed to find any politician, anywhere, who would not be covered by the above description.  Our closest neighbours have a fully fledged Tory Government in power who are busy handing out billions of pounds worth of contracts to there mates companies.  

Interesting that at UK Government level the spending is only wasted if it goes to services which support the general public.  If it is spent on defence contracts and contracts with their mates it is never wasted it is simply an investment....

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Totally agree far too money on heritage schemes, active travel e.g. The £1.3m just in improvement on old railway bridges etc. this money should be spent on more important things like mental health and the massive potholes in roads and the pavements which are full of holes, weeds etc

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Heritage is a strange thing, there are people who seem to use it as a way to block progress, but they miss the point that todays new is tomorrow’s heritage. We  should not be trying to recreate Victorian times at the expense of new, well designed and efficient transport and housing etc. I love old architecture, and like the trams and railway, however I would much rather their management is handed over to volunteer bodies and their scope limited, whilst being preserved for future generations on a sustainable basis. The same mindset should apply in construction, where instead of planning authorities insisting on mock Victorian facades etc, we should welcome new, well designed and well built buildings that will hopefully stand the test of time and maybe become part of future heritage debates. The Victorians did not appear to be weighed down by their past, instead looked to the future and innovated with vigor.

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Good social facilities like the NSC, or museums, improve mental and physical wellbeing. Repairing the old railway lines and turning them into good quality cycle paths improves mental and physical wellbeing. Maintaining railways which we've had for 125 years allows them to be used and enjoyed for generations to come, again improving mental and physical wellbeing.

It's a boring and tired old argument that says we shouldn't spend any money on leisure facilities, or museums, or anything really, because we could always spend it on the hospital. 

The fact the NSC refurbishment has been bodged doesn't mean it shouldn't have been done. And the issues with the prom have less to do with the tram tracks and more to do with the fact the ground works were in a worse state than expected. And, again, poor management doesn't mean it shouldn't have been done.

What's the old saying about knowing the cost of everything and the value of nowt?

Edited by tetchtyke
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3 hours ago, manxman1980 said:

how long before you stop funding places like Castle Rushen, Cregneash, Peel Castle

Why is Cregneash more valued than 1930s council housing as a record of how people used to live? Why are castles more worthy than airfields, early radar stations and other more modern defences?

In the same way - why is poorly built Victiorian architecture and anything done in folksy looking stone often valued above anything from the mid 20th century modern era?

Olde worlde quaintness seems to be a big factor. That seems to be what "Heritage" really means.

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4 hours ago, asitis said:

Yesterday the Heritage Rail was given a further £642,000. I have no idea what the totals are of all the "Heritage" the public funds but when is enough, enough ?

When frontline services are starved of cash, at what point is any politico going to stand up and say that nice to haves, have to be second to frontline ?

I think we need to distinguish between spending on genuine heritage and spending using heritage as an excuse.  Much of what you're complaining about is the latter and rather than preserving and enhancing heritage it often gets rid of it.  This especially applies to Longworth's custody of the railways, but a lot of the work done in town centres is the same.  The actual history and charm of the old (which is what attracts visitors and makes people want to live thee) is destroyed.

The real problem is 'projectitis'.  Rather than the ongoing careful maintenance that preserves genuine heritage (and fills in potholes), it's much easier, 'prestigious' and lucrative for those in charge (because it costs more) to tear everything up and start again as we saw with the Prom.

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15 minutes ago, pongo said:

Why is Cregneash more valued than 1930s council housing as a record of how people used to live? Why are castles more worthy than airfields, early radar stations and other more modern defences?

Scarcity value .  How many places like Cregneash remain in existence and how many 1930's council housing stock are still in use?  As for more recent defence technology there are several such examples in the UK that were preserved and there are still some pill boxes etc doted around the Isle of Man not to mention the continued existence of Jurby airfield (and of course Ronaldsway which was also used for defence).

 

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9 hours ago, asitis said:

Given that tourism is a very small part of the islands GDP how much should we spend on "Heritage" ?

Tourism is a small part of an inordinately large GDP, without e-gaming and financial services, it would be a very large part of an inordinately small GDP!

Heritage is part of our increasingly small 'buzz factor' when it comes to living here, as much as it is to our visitor economy! 

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