Visitor management in sensitive historic landscapes: strategies to avoid conflict in Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site
Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site is one of the UK’s iconic historic landscapes; it is also one of its most protected and is endowed with a stable of archaeological, nature conservation and landscape designations. 23 May 2003 witnessed the opening of Hadrian’s Wall Path National Trail, a 135 kilometre recreational walking route that shadows the historic line of its eponymous Wall. By the mid1970s it was apparent that the archaeological fabric of the Wall’s central section was suffering from erosion and the initial driver behind the development of the Trail was not the development of tourism but rather a focus on its conservation and protection. That has largely been achieved and today, despite the overall increase in the number of people walking the course of the Wall, the Trail and monument are in a better condition than at any time in their recent modern history.