Three-day New Lanark event will mark the life of world-renowned Robert Owen

A three-day conference is set to take place in Lanarkshire in celebration of the 250th anniversary of the birth of Robert Owen.

The event will take place in memory of the world-renowned social reformer, who provided educational opportunities and improved housing and life-style conditions of employees at New Lanark Mills.

Owen’s remarkable story will now be brought to life at New Lanark World Heritage site.

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‘New Lanark 2021: A Living Legacy’ is a hybrid event which will take place both in person at the World Heritage site and online from Tuesday, October 12 to Thursday, October 14 and features a packed programme of speakers and round-table discussions exploring the legacies of social reform and heritage-led regeneration.

Keynote speakers will include former Prime Minister Gordon Brown, broadcaster Lesley Riddoch and Kate Pugh OBE, non-executive director for culture at the UK National Commission for UNESCO.

Three-day New Lanark event will mark the life of world-renowned Robert Owen
The New Lanark site

The conference also marks the 20th anniversary of New Lanark’s UNESCO World Heritage Site inscription and the completion of the £4.5 million National Lottery Heritage Fund and Historic Environment Scotland funded ‘Restoration of former millworkers’ housing’ programme.

Jane Masters from the trust told Lanarkshire Live: “Despite the challenges of the pandemic, 2021 marks a number of major milestones for New Lanark.

“And we are delighted to present this global conference which draws speakers from countries as far afield as Japan and Mexico who all share a passion for the legacy and ethos of New Lanark – be it social reform, heritage-led regeneration or World Heritage.

“The legacy of Robert Owen in particular is far-reaching and undoubtedly just as relevant in 2021 as we continue to strive for all that he stood for today – equality, educational opportunities and workers’ rights.”

Tickets are priced from £10.00 and can be purchased online.

The conference is being supported by South Lanarkshire Council, Historic Environment Scotland and the National Lottery Heritage Fund.

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