Today, we have a little treat for you!
The Fynch talked to Miss Shaheera Pesnani, a student and researcher in Architectural Conservation at the University of Edinburgh.
We asked her a few questions, which we thought you might be interested to find answers too. So here we go! Please head over to the hyperlink, we’ve tried really hard to make it look cute ;-;
Besides this, we also spoke to her about what can be done in societies like ours, to make people understand why preservation is important and actively involving society in the conservation process. Particularly in Pakistan’s case, where low literacy rates and the religion factor both come into play, apart from bad governance and corruption.
She told us about one amazing movement by civil society in this regard.
It is carried out in Karachi to involve locals, or mainly students and researchers and goes by the name of “Heritage Walk”. What they do is that they go on a walking tour in the old town of Karachi and visit the historical buildings, be it in a good condition or in a dilapidated one.
Shaheera says the idea is great, as it does four things:
- Creates awareness about the city’s historical heritage,
- Creates an interest in the subject,
- Encourages a new perspective,
- Allows people to walk in a city which is not meant for pedestrians.
“I think Super Savari Express, a bus, was also introduced in Karachi for the same purposes — to see Karachi’s historical buildings — but the charges were high and it was mainly, according to me, allows the upper-middle or upper class people to benefit easily. So, I think more of such initiative should be introduced at a community level, which engages all sorts of people.
We need to have more community centres, libraries, archives, and platforms to create interest and awareness. I think another great way would be to cycling tours, too.
I think there are many ways to go about it but most importantly, it is extremely crucial to involve the community who lives in or near those historic/heritage buildings. A dialogue, perhaps, as to why these buildings should be preserved.
Currently, I am researching the heritage-listed buildings in the old town of Karachi. I found out that when heritage listings were introduced many owners or residents of the buildings tried to get their buildings de-listed. So, some sort of community outreach program has to be carried out for that, too.” added Shaheera.
We hope this fills your curiosity gap :D