According to their website, the UK Commission is at the heart of delivering UNESCO’s mission at national level is the global network of 199 National Commissions for UNESCO, of which the UK Commission represents the interests of British contenders.

The UK National Commission supports the UK’s contribution to UNESCO and brings the benefits of UNESCO to the UK. They are the central hub for all UNESCO-related matters within the UK.

They are an independent not-for-profit organisation, supported by grant funding from the UK government. Their core functions are:

→ To provide expert, individual policy advice to the UK and devolved governments on UNESCO related issues.

→ To support the UK government’s agenda to help UNESCO achieve its core goals.

→ To advise and assist individuals and institutions in the UK and its’ Overseas Territories and Crown Dependencies, with accessing UNESCO accreditation and prizes.

→ To support and enhance the value of the UK’s 165 UNESCO sites and projects.





As the only United Nations agency with a specific mandate for science, UNESCO works to advance and promote science in the interests of peace, sustainable development and human security and well-being.

Since its inception in London in November 1945, UNESCO has acted as a catalyst for the establishment of many scientific unions and bodies in natural and human sciences. It has stimulated the creation of initiatives with far-reaching implications for sustainable development including the Man and the Biosphere Programme, the Intergovernmental Hydrological Programme, the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission, UNESCO Global Geoparks and natural sites inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

The UK is home to many science-related UNESCO sites and programmes, and their world-leading experts continue to shape and have impact through UNESCO’s global programmes.

The seeds of UNESCO’s work were formed in the minds of ministers of education during the Second World War and UNESCO has galvanised international collaboration on education through its standard setting frameworks and monitoring, the Education for All programme and its global action plan on Education for sustainable development aimed at Circular Economies.

As the only United Nations body with a mandate that covers all aspects of education, UNESCO has been entrusted with leading and monitoring worldwide action to deliver the targets in the Sustainable Development Goal on quality education for all under SDG4.

The UK and devolved Governments are committed to fulfilling UNESCO’s action on education globally by providing equal and quality education, ensuring that everyone has the chance to reach their potential and live a more fulfilled life.







These instruction from February of 1911, reveal a great deal about the technology on site. They are one of the exhibits on display, alongside other innovative firsts that took place in this Sussex backwater.





The UK National Commission for UNESCO is comprised of a Secretariat team of seven full-time staff and is supported by six Non-Executive Directors appointed by the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

Together, they aim to use education, culture, communication and information and science to build mutual dialogue and peace in the United Kingdom.




Professor Anne Anderson - Chair - SINCE 2018 - #Technology #Education

Professor Anne Anderson, OBE FRSE and Vice Principal Emerita of the University of Glasgow, holds a research background in psychology exploring how people communicate in text, dialogue and via technologies.

Joseph Nhan-O’Reilly - SINCE 2018 - #Education

Joseph Nhan-O’Reilly is an expert in education, contributing to the progress of UNESCO’s fight for education to be recognised as a human right through his role as Board Member for the UK National Commission.

Kate Pugh - SINCE 2021 - #Culture

Kate Pugh is a heritage and cultural specialist with extensive experience in national and international heritage.

Professor David J Drewry - SINCE 2017 - #Science

David Drewry is a world leading expert on the environment and study of the polar region, his experience includes Director of both the British Antarctic Survey and the Scott Polar Research Institute at Cambridge University.

Dr Charlotte Joy - SINCE 2021 - #Culture

Dr Charlotte Joy is a social anthropologist who has worked in the field of cultural heritage protection for over fifteen years and has undertaken long-term fieldwork in Mali and at UNESCO in Paris.

Karen Merkel - SINCE 2014 - #Media #Communication

Karen Merkel is an expert on international development through creative industries, having worked across multiple media platforms throughout her career and co-founding New Media Networks with Akim Mogaji in 2008.



The world faces unprecedented challenges across multiple dimensions – from climate change to hundreds of millions of children being out of school, from promoting sustainable development to the spread of disinformation, from persistent gender inequalities to the growth of mega-cities, and from the impact of artificial intelligence on societies and economies to the destruction of our shared heritage and culture.

The world also faces opportunities, including those to promote rights and human dignity, to better use science and technology for the good of all, and to preserve and protect our shared cultural heritage.

The UK is not exempt from these challenges and has an important role to play in shaping international action in response to them, not least through its membership of UNESCO. Its role in UNESCO also allows the UK to engage in debates about the opportunities present today, and through collective action to promote a better future.

UNESCO’s mandate to use culture, education, science and communication as tools to drive forward sustainable development and foster peace has never been more relevant. UNESCO is a global organisation but grounded in local designations ranging from World Heritage Sites to Biospheres, from Geoparks to Creative Cities, from schools to University Chairs. It is this grassroots nature linked to global standards setting which gives UNESCO its unique character and potential.

This Strategy outlines how the UK National Commission for UNESCO will help to meet the unprecedented range of global challenges we face today. We will work in partnership locally, nationally and globally:

● Locally, the Commission aims to work with the growing number of UNESCO designated sites and projects in the UK (currently over 170), helping not only to maximise their benefits from membership of UNESCO, but to leverage their work, innovations and local and international networks to help support UNESCO’s aims and objectives.

● Nationally, the Commission will work with the UK and devolved governments and with their network of experts to help develop policy solutions and provide advice;

● Globally, UNESCO UK will work with the UNs's Headquarters in Paris, like-minded member states, the global network of UNESCO National Commissions, and their own international networks to help shape and implement UNESCO’s programmes and activities.





UNESCO United Kingdom Commission

3 Whitehall Ct
London SW1A 2EF



According to the official Government website, in the UK, in 2022, seven 'tentative' listings were announced:


"The Government has revealed the seven places it is backing to win UNESCO World Heritage Status, via the Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), published 10 April 2023."




- Birkenhead the People’s Park [Cultural]
- East Atlantic Flyway – England East Coast Wetlands [Natural]
- The Flow Country [Natural]
- Gracehill Moravian Church Settlements [Cultural, Transnational]
- Little Cayman Marine Parks and Protected Areas [Natural]
- York [Cultural]
- The Zenith of Iron Age Shetland [Cultural]


These were a mix of 'Cultural' and 'Natural' sites. Presumably, if Herstmonceux Electricity Generating Works & Battery Energy Storage, were to be included, the complex would come under the heading 'Technology.' The Trust share the same ideals, aims and objectives as those defined by the World Heritage Convention for Cultural Protection 16th November 1972.













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