The EYCH offer the best opportunity to launch a new pan-European civil heritage network with sociocultural aims realized by jointly organized events in the frame of PRO URBE Forum.
Civil heritage network development – ongoing
Establishing a European PRO URBE network; involving participants from the Member Countries; establishing international contacts; communication – cooperation with civil-society organizations of 28 EU countries and 4 EFTA countries.
The pan-European PRO URBE network of heritage-conscious civil organizations will seek to disseminate best practices and make heritage protection (whether done by authorities or individuals) attractive. Cooperation is meant to broaden the social basis of heritage. These aims coincide with those of the European Year of Cultural Heritage. Network development is beneficial both for professional and general social objectives. Liaising with DG Education and Culture of the European Commission, the European Parliament’s Committee on Culture, and the office of Hungarian deputy state secretary attached to the Prime Minister’s Office, which is in charge of heritage.
Opening Conference in the festive hall of the National Museum, Budapest
Well-known senior officials of key heritage protection organizations (UNESCO, ICCROM, ICOMOS) are to shed new light on heritage-related issues. The presentations are to include heritage-conscious urban development, credible rehabilitation and how certain European countries have managed to make the protection of historical monuments effective.
The conference is to be held at one of Budapest’s finest heritage sites. The deliberations are to be broadcast in real time on the Internet on the website www.ProUrbe.org – which is to be made operational by that time.
If Europe exists as a historical unit,
than this is due for the most part to European cities.
Exhibition panels, which introduce characteristic cities of northern, southern, eastern, western and central Europe, will be on display between April and November. Each exhibition lasts for two weeks. In 7 exhibitions all the 32 EU+EFTA countries introduce themselves (7×4 + 4 = 32). The exhibitions could begin simultaneously in 7 cities of every Member Country as organized by the PRO URBE network. Organized in fortnightly periods and covering 2 groups of 7 cities, the exhibitions could reach 14 x 32 = 448 European towns and cities. Between April and November it could show the rich variety of Europe’s urban architecture. Every show is to have a motto, which highlights the importance of urban built heritage from various aspects.
Our everyday environment is the urban street – public forum on and for heritage
First venues in Budapest: Hajós Street or Himfy Street with Mányoki Street. Carefully examining the streets and then discussing the future of the houses and the streets concerned. Every second Friday there will be a 90-minute event on another location: assessing impressions of local residents, comparing them with professional opinions, and then channelling them to the local municipalities. Two staffers of PRO URBE could set out simultaneously in two districts. In the first stage in districts 6 and 11. Between March and October there could be 14 occasions. Overall there could be 2x14x25 = 700 persons involved in a year.
Once this series gets going, it will be disseminated in the same manner as the Budapest100 event (see below).
Different themes, e.g.: Budapest’s squares, the buildings in those squares and the residents concerned.
We intend to popularize Budapest’s urban festival all across Europe. We are going to invite PRO URBE partners to come and see it. There will be a workshop for them where we speak about preparations and organization. In numerous cities – possibly in Dublin, Uppsala and Lviv – we are to offer consultancy under the aegis of the ProUrbe to the organization of “Open Houses” Festivals. We also plan to deliver presentations and mount exhibitions about Budapest100 in Munich and Luxembourg.
PRO URBE itinerant workshops co-organized with PRO URBE partners; brain storming and knowledge transfer, best practices, PR, communication, dissemination; closing workshop.
The workshops are meant to contribute to realize the goals of civil-focused events and to encourage the participants to carry it on.
Most workshops are linked to concrete events. What are those events? A conference each in Budapest and Sopron; the Heritage Festival, two workshops will be related to the City Magic heritage nights (one each in Budapest and Jaroslaw), and there will be one for the invited guests of Budapest100. A workshop is to have between 20 and 30 participants, including senior representatives of Hungarian and multilateral organizations. PRO URBE is to cover 75% of the costs of participation (half of the travel fare; accommodation, meals, programmes, transport and brochures).
The co-organizer of the conference will be the Slovak Federation of Architects. The agenda will include architecture during the Austro–Hungarian Empire, Czech and Hungarian followers of Bauhaus; an outstanding Slovak architect who was active in Budapest during the last third of the 19th century, Renaissance architectural heritage in Poland, the ancient Roman limes (frontier), and the shared benefits of world heritage sites. In the evening there will be a concert featuring pieces from each of the five countries. Note that the venue of the concert is a theatre designed by a Hungarian architect by Slovak origin.
Sensitizing students in the seventh and eleventh classes of schools to the values of built heritage. – Localizing European models
The partner schools will be chosen on the basis of their responses to our call for proposals. PRO URBE and the selected schools will sign a cooperation agreement. The planned programmes include city tours, visits to noteworthy buildings, visits to museums, the perusal of maps, presentations by students, quizzes, competitive tests, drawing competition, organizing a “Heritage Day” at schools etc.
We aim at sensitizing schoolchildren to the values of built heritage in their immediate surroundings. During the EYCH we plan to involve ten schools; there are to 4 occasions, each lasting for one and a half hours; 10×225 = 250 students are to be involved.
A workshop connected to this project can also be organized. It will help propagate such events in Hungary and elsewhere in the region.
Hour-long walks; involving several arts to introduce well-known or less known heritage neighbour-hoods – Localizing European models
This model of heritage sensitizing has been initiated by the Council of Europe and has already gained popularity in Western Europe. We plan to spread it in our region (V4 countries, Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, Slovenia and Croatia). It is to include reminding local residents of stories that are connected to precious old buildings that are not in the spotlight anymore. There can be presentations about the architectural style employed; innovative techniques of illumination can be employed, short musical pieces can be performed on balconies or in doorways, laser shows can be made, etc. Such a programme can be tied to the Night of Museums.
In Budapest such programmes could be held every second weekend, on Saturdays and Sundays between 9 and 10 p.m. On Saturdays it could be held atop Castle Hill, and on Sundays in the southern part of the Inner City on the Pest side. Organized under the aegis of PRO URBE it can be free of charge. Later on, to make it sustainable, participants would have pay for the ticket.
Workshops could be attached to the City Magic series to popularize this type of events in our region. When it is held in Jarosław on the second weekend of September, it can coincide with the traditional annual fair.
Float exhibition organized fortnightly in ports along the Danube in 8 countries
The itinerant exhibition will present the complex connections between the riparian cultures. The programme is linked to the DANUrB [Danube Urban Brand] project, which is a part of INTERREG EU Strategy for the Danube Region. (Hungary is a lead partner in DANUrB.) The exhibition will set out from Budapest – a pearl along the Danube – and travel along the river. It will rely on the international ties of DANUrB, which has 39 partner entities in 7 countries. The exhibition will also pay attention to the cultural heritage of minor riparian towns as Komárom, Esztergom, Vác, Ráckeve, Dunaújváros, Paks and Baja. The ship will have stopovers at all those towns.
We expect input from German, Austrian, Slovak, Croatian, Serbian, Bulgarian and Romanian towns. The floating exhibition is to be in motion throughout the year. (See some of the key ports below.)
We plan to combine the separate Hungarian events of the Day of Cultural Heritage into a unified festival. The festival is to include
– the presentation of the architectural history, courtyard and internal spaces of a little known historical monument, where will be
– a concert of Central European world music,
– a street ball and
We plan to link Hungary’s events on the Days of Cultural Heritage to kindred events of other countries via Internet. On the whole the 70,000 events of the European Heritage Days attract an annual 30 million visitors in 50,000 venues.