Omeriye Ottoman Baths receive Europa Nostra award
Brussels, Mar 13 - The 16th century Omeriye Ottoman Baths in Nicosia have been selected for the Conservation of Architectural Heritage award of Europa Nostra.
The Brussels-based European Commission and Europa Nostra awards have announced this week the five top prizes for the annual European Union Prize for Cultural Heritage/Europa Nostra Awards.
These awards were jointly launched in 2002 by Europa Nostra and the European Commission, in the framework of the Commission's Culture 2000 programme, to recognise best practices in heritage conservation on a European level. Prizes will be presented to the laureates late June in Madrid, during a ceremony which will be presided by the Queen of Spain.
Commenting on the results, European Commissioner in charge of Culture Jan Figel said that ''investing for the future of our past, i.e. preserving the EU's heritage for a better understanding by future generations, is one of the goals of the Commission's action in the cultural area.''
He added that ''these five projects illustrate the many facets of Europe's cultural heritage, ranging from the restoration of buildings and sites, their adaptation to new uses, new building projects in conservation areas, urban and rural landscape rehabilitation, to care for collections, outstanding research and dedicated service to heritage conservation.''
A total of 214 applications and nominations received in various categories were assessed by independent experts and evaluated by the Heritage Awards Juries in recent months. The aims of the awards presented today are three-fold, that is to promote high standards in conservation practice, to stimulate trans-boundary exchanges of knowledge and skills, and to encourage further exemplary initiatives in the field of cultural heritage.
The five top Prizes, with a monetary award of 10,000 euros each, will be presented in the following categories:
The Conservation of Architectural Heritage goes to the 16th century Omeriye Ottoman Baths, Nicosia (Cyprus) located in one of the most neglected areas of the walled city.
A European Commission statement said ''their restoration and modernization enabled to retain the traditional use, and has greatly contributed to upgrading the building environment and to preserving and promoting the multicultural character of the city.
The Conservation of Cultural Landscapes went to the Via de la Plata, Extremadura (Spain), the Conservation of Works of Art award was presented to the Edward Chambre Hardman Photographic Collection, Liverpool (United Kingdom), while the Outstanding Studies award was given to Dr Anna Sulimowska-Ociepka and the Technical University of Silesia for her PhD thesis on the Old Workers' Estates in Upper Silesia (Poland) built by the coal industry in the 19th and early 20th centuries. The Dedicated Service to Heritage Conservation award went to the Maisons Paysannes de France, a non-profit, non-governmental organisation founded in 1965.
In addition to the five top Prizes, nine Medals and seventeen Diplomas are to be awarded.
The Awards will be presented to the laureates at the annual European Heritage Awards Ceremony, to be held in June at the Palacio Real de El Pardo in Madrid, with the participation of Europa Nostra's President, the Prince Consort of Denmark and Mr. Jan Figel.
The ceremony will be presided over by Queen Sofia of Spain.