CITiZAN Conference: Connecting Coastal Heritage, Communities and Climate Change

05/03/2022  |  9:30 a.m.

Museum of Liverpool, Pier Head, Liverpool


We are pleased to host an in-person and virtual event on coastal heritage and climate change as our first conference since lockdown!

Climate change today represents one of the greatest threats to our lives and livelihoods, directly impacting on societies, people’s health, biodiversity, the economy and, overall, our futures. It also threatens our culture and heritage, whether that be the more tangible and daily heritage we see throughout our everyday lives, or that which harbours in our memories, practices and ways of knowing. The UK, as an island nation, is home to thousands of coastal communities that are vulnerable to the impacts of climate change – whether that is from the loss of livelihoods, homes or even entire landscapes. Archaeologists and other practitioners can help understand and respond to these threats and hazards via our work, using our expertise and access to the past.

This conference explores the opportunities and challenges of understanding these coastal processes and the impact that they have on our shoreline heritage and on the communities who live along them. 

 The conference will be focused specifically on: 


•             The impact of climate change and how heritage can contribute to its understanding

•             The inevitability of damage and loss, and what this might mean to our communities

•             The relevance of maritime/coastal/intertidal research in regards to climate action


 Outline of sessions:


 Session 1: Warm, wet and windy: the impact of climate change-driven extreme weather on coastal heritage.

 Session 2: The inevitability of loss: How understanding the historic environment can help adapt to loss.

 Panel Discussion: How relevant/important to tackling climate change is understanding our coastlines?        


Speakers will come from a range of backgrounds and disciplines. Below is the working programme with all confirmed speakers:


10:00-10:30 Welcome: Opening Remarks

Caroline Barrie-Smith, CITiZAN/MOLA


10:30-11:00 The need to engage with coastal communities

Antony Firth, Historic England


11:00-11:15 Break


11:15-13:00 Warm, wet and windy: the impact of climate change on coastal heritage

Chair: Michael Curtis, Nautical Archaeology Society

Sarah Forgesson, University College London

Joseph Earl, Lancaster University/Coast Watchers

Salma Sabour, University of Southampton

Abigail Allan, University of Oxford/National Historic Ships UK

Natalie Coffey & Isabell Spall, Dynamic Dunescapes and Formby National Trust

Clare Martynski, Time and Tide Bell


13:00-14:00 Networking Lunch


14:00-15:30 The inevitability of loss: How understanding the historic/natural environment can help adapt to loss?

Chair: Neil Redfern, Council for British Archaeology

Tanya Venture, University of Exeter

Dr Louise Ann Wilson, Louise Ann Wilson Company

Alice Harvey-Fishenden, University of Liverpool

Helen Johnson, Thames Discovery Programme


15:30-15:45 Break


15:45-16:30 Panel Discussion: How relevant and important to tackling climate change is understanding our coastlines?

Chair: Hana Morel, CITiZAN

Tom Dawson/Joanna Hambly, SCAPE

Dr Julian Whitewright, Royal Commission for the Ancient and Historical Monuments of Wales

Anthony Corns, CHERISH

Dr Crystal El Safadi, University of Southampton


16:30-16:40 Break 


16:40-17:00 Hope, Imagination, Power, Change: Citizens at the interface of the past, present and future.

Dr Sara Perry, MOLA

Book your place on Eventbrite now: 

IN-PERSON EVENT (NOTE: Ticket sales for in-person attendance will end at midnight on 17th February, after which tickets to attend will be for the online livestream only).



PLEASE NOTE: in order to keep everyone as safe as possible during the event, we are requesting that all attendees wear masks whilst at the event unless you are medically exempt (speakers may remove their mask whilst presenting), and that all attendees take a lateral flow test on the morning of the event. If the result is positive for COVID-19, you must not attend the event under any circumstances.

Due to some of those attending either being vulnerable themselves or potentially caring for vulnerable people, if you are displaying flu-like symptoms, you will be asked to leave the event. We reserve the right to turn away anyone who is perceived to be exhibiting symptoms associated with COVID-19. Thank you for your understanding and cooperation in keeping everyone as safe as possible whilst at the event.

Further information on how to order Lateral Flow COVID-19 Tests is available on the Government website:

For a full programme for this event including abstracts click on the link below.

Programme for the fifth CITiZAN conference (CITiZAN)