A street scene full of people in the foreground and coloured townhouses in the background.
St Paul's Carnival, Bristol. © Historic England.
St Paul's Carnival, Bristol. © Historic England.

Historic England Segments

At Historic England, we believe heritage is for everyone. We are offering the Historic England Segments for use by organisations of all sizes to enable them to reach a more diverse range of people.

As a Non-Departmental Public Body, Historic England operates on behalf of a wide-ranging audience. Our strategy for inclusion, diversity and equality outlines our desire to work with and reach a more diverse range of people.

The Historic England Segments help us to connect more effectively with our existing audiences. They also enable us to engage with new and more diverse groups.   

The Segments were launched internally in early 2022 and have since been used by teams across Historic England to help us consider how we reach our audiences. We have continued to revisit and refresh our Segments at regular intervals to ensure that what we see in the data still matches what we are seeing in our day-to-day work.

The Historic England Segments were initially developed for Historic England by audience strategy and insight consultancy Morris Hargreaves McIntyre.

Supporting the heritage sector

Following additional research and feedback from the sector, we are now making our Historic England Segments available more broadly. The Segments can support heritage organisations of all sizes to reach more people, engage with more diverse communities, and ensure that audiences are a priority when planning activities and campaigns.

The Historic England Segments form part of our advice and support for heritage organisations on inclusion: a collection of advice, guidance and case studies designed to support the heritage industry to become more inclusive and diverse.

You can download summary and in-full versions of the Historic England Segments. We hope they are relevant, usable, and helpful tools. We recognise that heritage organisations can vary in size and scope, and that some elements may not be applicable for you.

If you'd like more information or have feedback to share, we would love to hear from you.

Email the Historic England Marketing team

Developing the Historic England Segments

The Segments were created in direct response to Historic England’s inclusion, diversity and equality strategy and represent how diverse the population is in terms of demographics, beliefs, and values. They can be used as a tool in the pursuit of inclusion and diversity goals, as well as a tool for working with different audiences.

We commissioned this segmentation system to help us understand how people relate or could relate to heritage, driven by their personal values. The Segments are defined by the motivations which might lead people to connect with heritage.

Everyone is different. Trying to meet the needs of everybody can mean that we meet the needs of nobody. Likewise, we recognise that treating people as one homogenous mass won't work either. We, therefore, use an approach called segmentation: grouping people together into a small number of Segments who share the same values, particularly in response to the historic environment.

This is primarily a pragmatic tool. No one in the world has 1 set identity, and there will be some overlaps between Segments. Some people will feel like they are in the middle of a Segment, while others may feel they fall between 2 or 3 Segments. Ultimately, each of us will share more things in common with some people than others.

It's important to note that we have based this segmentation system on values and not demographics (such as location, age and gender). This is because our values change more slowly, unlike our life stage or location. Once we understand core values and how people feel about the world around them, we can more easily encourage behavioural change.  

In developing the Segments, we have created 2 tools: Segment Snapshots (summaries) and Segments in Full (containing more in-depth information) about each of the 7 Segments.


Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

Do you have questions about the Historic England Segments?

Read our answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs)