The 1st International conference on Land Transportation, Locomotive Heritage and Road Culture organised by the Center for Heritage Studies of the University of Kelaniya was successfully held on the 14th and 15th of December 2017. The Inaugural Ceremony of the conference was held on the 14th of December 2017 at the Auditorium of the Faculty of Social Sciences. The conference provided a great opportunity to the academics and the researchers in the fields of Land Transportation, Locomotive heritage and Road Culture to widen their knowledge in heritage studies. Prof. Amal S. Kumarage, Senior Professor of the Department of Transport and logistics Management, University of Moratuwa, delivered the keynote speech at the conference on “Transport & the shaping of Sri Lanka’s History”.
Prof. A.H.M.H. Abayarathne, Dean of the Faculty of Social Sciences, Prof. Patrick Ratnayake, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities graced the Inaugural Ceremony as the Chief Guests. Prof. Anura Manatunga, Director of the Centre for Heritage Studies, Heads of academic Departments of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Faculty of Humanities and undergraduates were present at the Inaugural Ceremony. Moreover, academic staff and some undergraduates of the University of Ruhuna, Rajarata University and University of Sri Jayewardenepura also participated in this event.
Around 139 research papers were presented during the conference under the tracks of Theoretical aspects on mobility and migration of people, goods and ideas through land, Tracing ancient tracts, cart roads and highways, Packed-animal transportation, Construction of Roads, bridges, tunnels and roadside monuments, History of automobiles and railways, Pilgrim routes, tour itineraries and old travelogues, Laws, regulations and customs related to land transportation, Folklore folk songs, writings, paintings and decorations of vehicles and roads, Public behavior and culture on roads and roadsides, Conservation and preservation of vintage vehicles and locomotive heritage. Among the 139 research papers, there were 30 research papers submitted by researchers in India.