EU Prize for Cultural Heritage/ Europa Nostra Award presented to the Iubilantes Association

The Local Award Ceremony for the Iubilantes Association, winner of an EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Award 2014 in the Dedicated Service category, was held on 5 November in Como, Lombardy Region, Italy. Europa Nostra was represented by its Vice-President Alexander Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn. Dozens of heritage and cultural professionals, volunteers and supporters, and representatives from local, regional and national authorities assembled to pay tribute to the remarkable work of the Association.

Group photo of the Iubilantes Board after the Local Award Ceremony held on 5 November in Como. Photo: Courtesy of Iubilantes Association

Group photo of the Iubilantes Board after the Local Award Ceremony held on 5 November in Como. Photo: Courtesy of Iubilantes Association


The event was honoured by the presence of Lucia Ronchetti, Director of the Archivio di Stato di Como, Pietro Kuciukian, Honorary Consul of the Republic of Armenia in Italy, Francesco Ferrari, Vice-President of the Associazione Europea delle Vie Francigene, Maria Antonia Brovelli, Vice-Rector for Como Campus and GIS Professor at the Politecnico di Milano, and Luigi Cavadini, Councilor for Culture and Tourism at the Municipality of Como.

All participants highlighted the importance and value of our European heritage and the good example that the Iubilantes Association sets in order to preserve this heritage.

The Vice-president of Europa Nostra presented the award and congratulated the entire team on the significant prize.

“‘Inspiring’ is the word the Jury of the Awards used to describe the effect of Iubilantes’ range of innovations in the reuse and promotion of historic paths within the cultural landscape, affecting a remarkably wide circle of the population, and not only in Italy. Footpaths are possibly the most vulnerable element in the European cultural heritage, and by linking walking as a primordial way to connect with the landscape, Iubilantes contributes strongly to its protection and enrichment,” stated Alexander Sayn-Wittgenstein-Sayn.

“The mission of the Iubilantes Association enables people to rediscover the joy of walking. But the work of these dedicated volunteers goes even further. By recovering these forgotten footpaths, traditional pilgrimage trails and historic routes, walkers are connected to the story of the cultural landscapes that surround each path. They are given the unique chance to experience the environment in new ways, combining nature and history in a way that not only promotes the benefits of walking as transportation, but also instilling greater respect and understanding for Europe’s cultural heritage,” he added.

“The individuals of the Iubilantes Association have brought this mission to life in projects carried out in situ in Italy and beyond, including re-establishing pilgrimage paths here in the beautiful Lombardy region. It is the scope of these projects that is particularly “inspiring”. Thank you for your contributions to cultural heritage, for your vision and your dedication,” concluded the Vice-president of Europa Nostra.

The ceremony was followed by a public guided tour through the Basilica S. Abbondio and by an Armenian musical performance in a beautiful concert hall in Como.

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