Forum: Regular reviews of heritage trails done to facilitate exploration

We thank The Straits Times for its article about the National Heritage Board's heritage trails (Best & Worst Heritage Trails, Dec 6).

The heritage trails are part of our ongoing efforts, under Our SG Heritage Plan, to document and promote our national and heartland heritage, and to highlight lesser-known heritage sites in Singapore. The article has allowed many to learn more about our heritage trails, and also highlighted stories about our community heritage.

The trails are designed to encourage convenient exploration of some or all of the sites listed on each trail, at a pace that suits the individual trail explorer. As mentioned in the article, all our heritage trails after 2015 feature short thematic trails which can be completed between 45 minutes and two hours.

We also regularly review the older trails, and when these trails are refreshed, they will also feature short thematic trails to facilitate easier exploration.

When curating heritage trails, we focus on the history of the area and select important heritage landmarks and sites based on their historical, social, cultural and community significance. These could include more recent establishments. For example, Northpoint Shopping Centre (the present Northpoint City) is included in the Yishun-Sembawang Heritage Trail because it was Singapore's first major suburban shopping complex.

Likewise, Our Tampines Hub is part of the Tampines Heritage Trail because it stands on the site of the former Tampines Stadium and Tampines Sports Hall, and we wanted to show how the space has evolved as a hub for the community.

We have also recently redesigned our heritage portal Roots.gov.sg, which is now more mobile-friendly, and features more accurate and intuitive maps for trail navigation. We will continue to update the portal to ensure information is up-to-date.

We hope Singaporeans will continue to enjoy rediscovering Singapore's heritage through NHB's heritage trails, and we always welcome feedback about them.

Wai Yin Pryke

Director, Education and Community Outreach

National Heritage Board