We note with interest your article ("Mackintosh buildings 'are in need of urgent repair'", The Herald, May 14 ) and leader ("We must preserve legacy of Charles Rennie Mackintosh", May 14) on Roger Billcliffe's concerns about the state of Charles Rennie Mackintosh's buildings.
We wholeheartedly support the comments regarding the state of buildings, not just those designed by Mackintosh but also by other well known architects.
Swathes of Glasgow's unique Victorian architecture deserve care and attention. Glasgow City Heritage Trust was established five years ago to promote and encourage the understanding, appreciation and conservation of Glasgow's historic buildings for the benefit of the city's communities and its visitors, now and in the future. In the past year alone we have distributed £1million to help towards the cost of essential repairs to 81 historic properties. Our grants ensure that many of Glasgow's historic buildings are wind and watertight and are repaired with appropriate skills and materials to preserve their character. The funding has been provided by Historic Scotland and Glasgow City Council.The council has also worked with us to enhance the civic realm and preserve prominent or community-owned buildings.
Our next educational project is aimed at encouraging people to look after their buildings by carrying out routine maintenance on their homes each year. About 1% of a building's value should be spent on its upkeep in any year. For too long people have viewed buildings as investments but fail to maintain them.
We would encourage owners to take a stitch-in-time approach, and urge everyone to appreciate the links between preserving our historic environment and ensuring a healthy economic future.Culture Secretary Fiona Hyslop said: "Managing our historic environment creatively contributes to sustainable economic growth by growing Scotland's construction industry and increasing the availability and quality of traditional skills and materials." Our hope is that by encouraging greater understanding of the value of our built heritage we can preserve it for future generations.
Director, Glasgow City Heritage Trust,
54 Bell Street, Glasgow.
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