Europa Nostra keen to cooperate with the new President of Romania
On 23 December 2014, the Executive President of Europa Nostra, Denis de Kergorlay, sent a letter to the new President of Romania, Klaus Iohannis, congratulating him on his recent election, acknowledging his remarkable achievements in the cultural heritage field as Mayor of Sibiu and expressing the hope of establishing a fruitful cooperation with the President and his team. In his letter, Denis de Kergorlay highlighted a series of excellent Romanian winners of the EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Awards. He also drew special attention of the new President to the two Romanian sites placed in 2013 and 2014 on the list of ’7 Most Endangered’ heritage sites in Europe, with a clear focus on the historic mining landscape of Roşia Montană. Europa Nostra stands ready to cooperate with the President’s office on a new vision and development plan for the area of Roșia Montană as well as on more general matters with regard to Europe’s cultural heritage located in Romania.
“Europa Nostra acknowledges your remarkable achievements as Mayor of Sibiu, a city which has been transformed during your successive terms in office to a significant extent due to laying culture and heritage as a base for its sustainable development. The special attention you have given to culture and to heritage is best expressed by the designation of Sibiu / Hermannstadt as a 2007 European Capital of Culture alongside the city of Luxembourg.” These were the words of praise which the Executive President of Europa Nostra addressed to the newly elected President of Romania.
Denis de Kergorlay paid tribute to a series of excellent Romanian winners of the EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Awards, in particular to the most recent 2014 Grand Prix in the category Conservation: the restoration of the 17th century frescos of the Dragomirna Monastery in Suceava, which also received the Public Choice Award.
The Executive President of Europa Nostra also drew the attention of the new President to the two Romanian sites listed in 2013 and 2014 among the 7 Most Endangered heritage sites in Europe, namely the historic mining landscape of Roşia Montană and the wooden churches in southern Transylvania and Northern Oltenia.
For many years, Europa Nostra has advocated that the sustainable future of Roşia Montană can only be ensured through the safeguard of its cultural heritage which, if well maintained and preserved, will only get richer, and will become a source of economic and social prosperity for the entire region and an example to be followed in other similar cases not only in Romania but also in the rest of Europe.
In the light of the above, Denis de Kergorlay appealed to President Iohannis: “We feel that a firm and well-argued public position on the value of this outstanding site, coming from you, as the new President of Romania, will be effective in placing the debate on the positive and promising track of cultural heritage and its value for society, in tune with the latest European policy strategy and directions”.
In concrete terms, Europa Nostra strongly recommended to the new President of Romania and to the Romanian Government to use the available EU structural funds for financing the much-needed authoritative feasibility study on an alternative development strategy for the area of Rosia Montană which would ensure a sustainable and prosperous future for the society and the environment of the entire region.