European Heritage Awards 2016: Grand Prix for Adopt a Monument

Adopt a Monument, Tampere, Finland
Photo: © Miinu Mäkelä 2013.

The winners of the 2016 EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Awards, Europe’s top honour in the field, were celebrated on May 24 at the Zarzuela Theatre in Madrid. Adopt a Monument project, facilitated by the Pirkanmaa Provincial Museum, is one of the Grand Prix winners.

This grassroots project encourages citizens to ‘adopt’ monuments of cultural and historical significance in their environment and return them to use. As caretakers of the monuments, they also contribute to raising awareness in the local communities about their heritage. ‘Adopt a Monument’ has enjoyed tremendous popularity in the Tampere Region and has started to gradually spread throughout the rest of the country.

“The volunteers who arrange the ‘adoptions’ are supported by professionals in museums and the projects for the restoration of the buildings are aided by conservation professionals. The enthusiasm from the volunteers coupled with the expertise of the professionals has resulted in a credible and highly efficient project which has had a great impact despite its modest budget. The project’s potential to be applied across Europe is evident”, affirmed the jury.

Adopt a Monument, Tampere, Finland
“This Grand Prix is in commendation of the work of those involved with this project and the tremendous effort that they have put into promoting good, active citizenship and encouraging the commitment of the local communities to their local heritage,” highlighted the jury. Photo: © Nina Luukko 2013.

Maestro Plácido Domingo, President of Europa Nostra, the leading heritage organisation in Europe, and Tibor Navracsics, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Youth and Sport, co-hosted the European Heritage Awards Ceremony and presented the 7 Grand Prix and the Public Choice Award, chosen from among the 28 winning projects of this year.

The 7 Grand Prix laureates, selected by independent expert juries and entitled to receive €10,000 each, are:

Category Conservation
▪ Traditional Watermill in Agios Germanos, Prespes, Greece
▪ The King's Little Pathway in El Chorro gorge, Malaga, Spain
▪ Wimpole Hall’s Gothic Tower in Wimpole, Cambridgeshire, United Kingdom
Category Research
▪ Conservation study of the village Gostuša in Pirot district, Serbia
Category Dedicated Service
▪ Employees and Activists of the National Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo, BiH
▪ Mrs. Giulia Maria Crespi, Milan, Italy
Category Education, Training and Awareness-Raising
▪ ‘Adopt a Monument’, Tampere, Finland

The Awards Ceremony is the main highlight of the European Heritage Congress, organised by Europa Nostra in cooperation with its country representation Hispania Nostra, which has brought hundreds of heritage players from all over Europe to Madrid on 22-27 May.

www.europanostra.org

Adopt a Monument, Tampere, Finland
Photo: © Miia Hinnerichsen 2014.

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