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Interpretive planning

Some key principles

In 1957 Freeman Tilden published ‘Interpreting Our Heritage’. In this book, he defined some key principles of interpretation:

  • Any interpretation that does not make displays relatable to the personality or experience of the visitor will not be interesting
  • Information is not the same as interpretation, although all interpretation includes information. Interpretation is a way of bringing information to life
  • The chief aim of interpretation is not to instruct, but to provoke
  • Interpretation addressed at children should not be a diluted version of adult interpretation but should follow a different approach. To be at its best it will require a separate programme.

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