Alumni help preserve Russian-Dutch cultural herritage site

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Contact Anna Agaltsova
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Publication date May 23, 2016 07:58 AM

Last weekend a diverse group of Dutch-Russian cultural heritage supporters went to Rostov Veliky to help manually clean up the 17th century earth fortress located there. The group included NANR members and the representatives of the Dutch Embassy, the Russian Ministry of Culture and the Tsaritsyno Museum in Moscow organized a subbotnik (volunteer day) at the site. The Rostov city administration and local businessmen greatly supported us in this initiative.

The Rostov fortress is an important monument with relations to the Old Dutch fortification system, as it was constructed with the help of Jan Cornelis van Rodenburgh, a Dutch engineer. This monument is rare in terms of its level of preservation and is a common heritage site for both Russia and the Netherlands that signifies the relationship between the two countries. Besides it is seen as the uniting element in restoring the touristic potential to the site on the whole.

After a pleasant train ride from Moscow we were warmly welcomed in Rostov with tea (poured from a real samovar!) and traditional Russian sweets. Our hosts also prepared all necessary equipment. For the next two hours we cut down old trees and removed excess vegetation and litter. As a result of the perfect sunny weather or our general enthusiasm we were able to clean up much more than our hosts had anticipated when we began. 

We hope that this initiative will help to preserve this amazing area and develop it into a larger historical and cultural complex. We are grateful to the Rostov city administration, the representatives of Russian museums and the Dutch Embassy in Russia for organising this trip. And of course, we would also like to thank all of the NANR members that joined us. 

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last modified May 23, 2016 07:58 AM