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The Cyprus we want: Europe honors the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage with the “Europa Nostra” award

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Europe has honored the incomprehensibly important work of the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage. Specifically yesterday in Venice, the Commission received the top European distinction, the Europa Nostra award. However, the Technical Committee also received the top Grand Prix award in the category “Dedicated Service to Cultural Heritage”. The Europa Nostra European Cultural Heritage Award is given to high-quality projects that fall into four categories: Maintenance, research, specialist services by individuals or organizations, and education, training and awareness-raising. The award aims to disseminate best practices by sector.

In a post by the member of the Technical Committee, Sotos Ktoris stated:

“Today (s.s. yesterday) is a great day for the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage. A great day for all those who work and / or support the effort to save the cultural heritage of our country. But also for those who work to strengthen the culture of reconciliation and mutual respect, peace and reconciliation.

The co-chair of the Committee, Takis Hadjidimitriou, stated in his own message, among other things, that “Through culture, new horizons can be opened for a better future for our place and its people. That is what Cyprus needs today “.

The post of the co-chair of the Committee Takis Hadjidimitriou:

The press release of the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage:

The winners of the European Heritage Awards 2021 / Europa Nostra Awards, Europe's top award in the field, were honored this afternoon at a prestigious ceremony held at the headquarters of the Giorgio Cini Foundation in Venice. During the ceremony, representatives of the European Commission and Europa Nostra proudly announced the four winners of the Grand Prix and the Public Choice Award, who were selected from this year's 24 winning achievements from 18 European countries. Due to security precautions against COVID-19, the 2021 European Heritage Awards ceremony was held with about 220 attendees, but was attended live by hundreds of cultural heritage professionals, volunteers, enthusiasts and supporters from all over Europe and beyond. The ceremony is one of the highlights of the 2021 European Cultural Heritage Summit, which takes place from 21 to 24 September in Venice, which is a World Heritage Site.

The winners of the Grand Prix for 2021 are:
1) The Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage (Cyprus), established in 2008 by Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot leaders under the auspices of the United Nations, which has successfully restored more than 70 monuments, using cultural heritage as a powerful tool for reconciliation and peace.
2) FIBRANET – Fibers in Ancient European Fabrics (Greece / Denmark), an innovative research project that provides new information on the degradation of ancient fibers, which updates archaeological research but also provides important knowledge for Europeans as we seek solutions to treat waste generated by the fashion and textile industries
3) The Wooden Church of the village of Urși, in the county of Vâlcea (Romania), a beautiful 18th century wooden church that was restored exemplary using traditional materials and techniques in a collaborative way, allowing the exchange of ideas and knowledge between participants from around the world
4) the Invention of a Guilty Party, Trento (Italy), an exemplary report examining the correlation of a historical case of anti-Semitism with contemporary debates about discrimination and intolerance in Europe today, raising critical concerns about the power of propaganda; and of fake news.
The winners of the Grand Prix, selected by the Board of Directors of Europa Nostra after setting up an independent jury of scientists, will each receive € 10,000. (Read below to learn more about these outstanding achievements of the European Heritage Grand Prix).

The remarkable restoration of the Wooden Church in the village of Urși (Romania) is the big winner of 2021: it received a Grand Prix and the general public chose it as its favorite cultural heritage project in Europe. About 7,000 people from all over Europe voted for the Public Choice Award online through the Europa Nostra website.

In a congratulatory message, David Sassoli, President of the European Parliament, said: “I would like to congratulate the 24 winners of the European Heritage Awards / Europa Nostra Awards 2021. Each of you has contributed to the protection, strengthening and promotion of the rich our cultural heritage and the common reconstruction of Europe's future. The European Green Agreement, our external relations, the future of Europe naturally go through our identity. So let me express my appreciation and thanks for your commitment. “
“I warmly congratulate the impressive winners of the European Heritage Awards / Europa Nostra Awards 2021 for their success and remarkable contribution to the Europe of our Culture. The extensive impact of the winners reflects the invaluable contribution of Europe 's cultural heritage to our society, economy and environment. At a time when Europe is determined to rebuild better, these successes are a real inspiration and a powerful example of what we, as Europeans, can achieve despite the challenges we face. “I hope that these awards will help your outstanding projects thrive and play an even more important role in the recovery of our Europe,” said Mariya Gabriel, European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth.
“After so much time together, it was a great pleasure to meet and celebrate the winners of our awards at the iconic Giorgio Cini Monastery complex on the island of San Giorgio Maggiore in Venice. Each of our winners clearly demonstrates the potential of our common cultural heritage to help rebuild a more resilient, inclusive and beautiful Europe. On behalf of the large family of Europa Nostra, I wholeheartedly congratulate our winners who were the proud recipients of Europe's top heritage site. “May these awards be the stepping stone to promoting your success and inspiring heritage professionals and lovers in Europe and beyond,” said Professor Dr. Hermann Parzinger, Executive President of Europa Nostra.
The Europa Nostra Awards were launched by the European Commission in 2002 and have since been organized by Europa Nostra – the European Civil Society Voice committed to Cultural and Natural Heritage. The Awards are supported by the European Union's Creative Europe program.

During the ceremony, the two winners of the ILUCIDARE 2021 Special Awards were also revealed:
1) HAP4MARBLE – Preservation of Marble with hydroxyapatite (Italy), for excellence in innovation based on cultural heritage and
2) EU-LAC Museums – Museums, Community & Sustainability in Europe, Latin America and the Caribbean (UK), for excellence in international heritage-based relations (read a separate press release).
The winners of the ILUCIDARE Special Awards were selected by the ILUCIDARE Consortium, including Europa Nostra, from among the applications submitted to the European Heritage Awards / Europa Nostra Awards 2021. ILUCIDARE is a project funded by Horizon 2020 heritage as a resource for innovation and international relations.
The European Heritage Awards ceremony was enhanced by exceptional musical performances prepared by our invaluable collaborator, the European Union Youth Orchestra. The ceremony was hosted by Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, General Secretary of Europa Nostra and Alberto Toso Fei, a famous Italian journalist, writer and historian.
The ceremony is one of the main events of the European Cultural Heritage Summit 2021. The Summit is organized by Europa Nostra – the European Voice of Civil Society committed to Cultural Heritage – with the support of the European Union and in cooperation with other European and Italian partners. The Summit is held under the auspices of the European Parliament, the Slovenian Presidency of the Council of the EU and the Italian Ministry of Culture. The Summit contributes to two important citizens' initiatives launched by the EU institutions, namely the New European Bauhaus and the Conference on the Future of Europe.

Winner of the Grand Prix 2021 in the Cultural Heritage Offer Category by Organizations or Persons

  • Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage (TCCH)

The Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage (TCCH), established in 2008 by the leaders of the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots under the auspices of the United Nations, has devoted its time, energy and knowledge to locating, promoting and protecting the rich and of the diverse cultural heritage of Cyprus and consequently of Europe. Over a period of 12 years, TCCH has successfully restored and preserved more than 70 monuments of great historical, archaeological, religious and social significance.
In support of its ongoing efforts, the Commission has received funding mainly from the European Union, but also from other donors, such as the Church of Cyprus, the EVKAF Administration, USAID, the Holy See, the AG Foundation. Leventi and local funding. UNDP provides technical assistance and oversees the implementation of projects.
The Commission is made up of representatives of Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots alike, who have worked tirelessly to promote cultural heritage as a powerful tool for peaceful co-operation and a climate of reconciliation. In recognition of the Commission's achievements in strengthening intercultural dialogue and promoting mutual understanding, Co-Chairs Takis Hadjidimitriou and Mr. Ali Tuncay received the 2015 European Citizen Award.

“This unique model of cooperation between two communities, despite the difficult political context, is an important example of commitment to the preservation of cultural heritage. “The uninterrupted and peaceful activities of the Commission, which are carried out by volunteer experts from both the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, demonstrate their courage and hope,” the jury said.

The diverse heritage of Cyprus reflects the many cultures that have left their mark on the island: from the Greeks, the Phoenicians, the Romans and the Byzantines to the Lusignans, the Venetians, the Ottomans and the British. TCCH considers that the impressive monuments left behind by these cultures are a common heritage for all Cypriots and Europeans.
Many of the monuments and ensembles that the Commission has restored include the famous monastery of Apostolos Andreas in the north of Cyprus, the Tower of Othello and the walls of Famagusta, which were first built by the Lusignans in the 12th century and modified in the centuries by the Genoese, the Venetians, the Ottomans and the British. These sites, each of which is a tangible example of the long and rich heritage of Cyprus, are preserved for future generations thanks to the dedication of the Technical Committee for Cultural Heritage (TCCH).

The education of the younger generations of Cypriots has been central to the Commission's mission. An interactive training program, including site visits to maintenance work, gives young people the opportunity to share the knowledge and experience of rehabilitation specialists. More than 2,000 participants have taken part in guided tours of current projects or attended presentations organized by Commission members.
The jury praised TCCH's achievements: “The work of the Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage is a strong demonstration that people of different cultures, languages and religions can and should strive to overcome their differences and work together for the common good. “This is indisputable proof that cultural heritage is the connecting link that unites people, both between local and cross-border communities.”

Bicommunal Technical Commission for Cultural Heritage: Six important projects in progress from Karpasia to Vatili (photos)

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Source: politis.com.cy

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