"You understand your whole old town as your home and stand up for it. In our country, home is limited to our own four walls," is how one participant of the EU project COMUS (Community-Led Urban Strategies in Historic Towns) summed up their impressions of Bamberg.
For two days the project representatives of nine historic towns in Armenia, Belarus, Georgia, Moldova and Ukraine met in Bamberg to deal with cultural heritage. They visited the former Benedictine monastery of St. Michael, as well as the International Artist Home Villa Concordia and the Bamberger “Gardeners and Häcker Museum”.
Gianluca Silvestrini from the Council of Europe in Strasbourg, who accompanied the delegation, together with Monika Göttler from the Regional Secretariat of the Organisation of World Heritage Cities (OWHC) in Regensburg praised the versatility of the program, which the Centre World Heritage Bamberg had tailored for the group. "When cooking with the Sortengarten volunteers, our participants themselves could get involved and simultaneously learn about the benefits of old vegetables," said Silvestrini.
"The World Heritage Convention is an instrument of international understanding and international cooperation. This idea also is the underlying foundation of our commitment in this COMUS programme, "said Mayor Dr. Christian Lange, responsible for the World Heritage, who opened the event in the Rococo Room of the Old Town Hall.
The participants showed great interest in the methods of how different stakeholders are involved to protect the Bamberg World Heritage. Patricia Alberth, director of the Centre for World Heritage Bamberg, stated that this is also underlined by the current development of the new management plan for the World Heritage. "The places that we showed the delegation, the partners who we visited, the vibrant civil society, all this reflects and characterizes Bamberg."
A successful first study visit of COMUS and OWHC Regional Secretariat Northwest Europe and North America!
Photos (c) Jürgen Schraudner
up: group photo of delegation on the city hall bridge
below: welcome through Mayor Dr. Lange in the Rococco room of the historical city hall Bamberg