Trevor Mitchell, regional director of English Heritage, visited Haworth prior to the release of his organisation’s Heritage at Risk register.
He said it would not be recognised by the Bronte family.
Mr Mitchell pointed out the street clutter, especially signage, “too modern” shop fronts and the state of the setts, which Bradford Council is to repair at a cost of £600,000 over the next three years.
“This is the shop window for the whole of Yorkshire,” he said. “Hundreds of thousands of people come here and it ought to be a world-class experience but people don’t get that.
“There is a lack of a shared vision. We are worried and Bradford Council is worried that the quality of the best-known village in Yorkshire is on the slide.”
He hoped to encourage shopkeepers and homeowners to pay attention to the heritage needs of the village which would bring economic benefits in the long run.
It was hoped to draw up plans and images of what the village should look like.
He was accompanied by Christine Kerrin, City Hall’s team leader for design and conservation, and John Hogg, the Council’s design and countryside manager.
Miss Kerrin said some changes had not been for the best. “Some window details are incorrect and the cumulative effect of signage and boards is not in character,” she said. “Haworth has a wonderful image, it’s an historic place but that character is not there in all places because of poor decision- making.”
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