Funds from benefit concerts and other events at the site of Grabštejn Castle near the German and Polish borders in the region of Liberec, contributed significantly to its renovation over the last 25 years, opera singer and main organizer Luděk Vele told the Czech News Agency. He stressed that while the castle, described as a ruins years ago, had been saved by the state, benefit events had played a role. The historic site was saved at the cost of some 100 million crowns; 55 million crowns, Mr Vele said, had come from the Culture Ministry. Renovated at the site were statues, lighting, a church organ and chapel; a gallery was also added.
Security checks at Prague Castle, which were introduced last August, will remain in place, the president’s spokesman Jiri Ovčáček informed on Friday, adding that it was recommended by the country’s security services. As of last summer, all visitors to the Prague Castle compound are asked to undergo security checks by police officers stationed at the gates, which has resulted in long queues forming. According to Jiří Ovčáček, more police officers will be earmarked to speed up the security checks.
Remains of five people from the 10th century, who are believed to be the last members of the Premyslid dynasty, will be buried at Prague Castle on Friday. The remains were discovered under the ruins of the Church of Virgin Mary, the oldest Christian church at Prague Castle. The origin of the five people, three adults and two children, could not be confirmed, but archaeologists believe that they were members of the ruling family. The remains will be interred at the site of the Church of Virgin Mary and at St George’s Basilica.
British architectural historian Barbara Peacock who cofounded the Friends of Czech Heritage fund to help restore the Czech Republic’s architectural heritage told the ctk news agency she would appreciate more volunteers from the Czech Republic. The vast majority of volunteers are British nationals who travel to the Czech Republic to help with the restoration of Czech castles and chateaux, gardens and landmarks and it would be good to have more mixed groups and interaction with Czech enthusiasts, Mrs. Peacock said. She had devoted much of her time these last ten years to help restore the Czech Republic’s architectural heritage and was recently honoured with a Point of Light Award by Prime Minister Theresa May for her work.
It is arguably the most frequently photographed sight in the Czech capital: Prague Castle overlooking the city complete with St. Vitus’ Cathedral. In the mid-18 century, the castle complex had a markedly different look. Its present-day appearance is based on designs by the Viennese court architect Nicolo Pacassi. He was commissioned by Habsburg Empress Maria Theresa after parts of the castle were heavily damaged.
The restoration of Kuks, one of the most beautiful baroque complexes in the Czech Republic, has won the European Grand Prix for heritage conservation. The prestigious award was presented by the Europa Nostra association in Finland’s Turku on Monday. The jury praised the interdisciplinary approach of the restoration work, saying it should serve as a strong example for conservation projects across Europe.
A court case has been renewed over the actions of the Ztohoven stunt art group which hoisted a large pair of red underpants over Prague Castle in place of the presidential standard in late 2015. The prosecutor called on Wednesday for a conditional sentence for members of the group. She also outlined a claim for 88,000 crowns in damages for the standard, which was later ripped into pieces, and for damage to the castle roof as well as non-material damages of 300,000 crowns. That compensation demand has been disputed by the defence. The artists, who gained access to the roof disguised as chimney cleaners, say the whole action was an expression of free speech underlining their disagreement with the stance of President Miloš Zeman. The court eventually delivered conditional sentences on the three members of the group and demanded they pay 8400 crowns for the standard and 55,000 for damage to the castle roof.
With the start of the tourist season in April hundreds of castles and chateaus around the Czech Republic open their doors to visitors. The National Heritage Institute which administers over 100 castles and chateaus selects a special theme every year to highlight some of the country’s architectural gems. This year it is Renaissance Nobility Year, focusing on the lives, homes and art collections of country’s leading aristocratic families of the time. I asked the spokesperson for the National Heritage Institute Jan Cieslar to tell me more about what
British architectural historian Barbara Peacock was recently honoured with a Point of Light Award by Prime Minister Teresa May for her work in helping to repair, preserve and enhance the Czech Republic’s rich architectural heritage. Following a visit to the Czech Republic in the early 1990s, Ms. Peacock set up The Friends of Czech Heritage fund, winning over British and Czech volunteers to help restore historic buildings, gardens and landmarks around the country. Jiří Hošek, Czech Radio’s correspondent in the UK, met up with Barbara Peacock to talk
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