World Heritage UNESCO - project

The development of the Krušné hory Mountains region was in the past influenced by mining and ore processing. Those activities contributed over 800 hundred years fundamentally to the creation of a unique cultural landscape on both sides of the border and stimulated its technologic, scientific and artistic development together with the origin of peculiar traditions and customs. The influence of mining in the region can still be seen in many technical landmarks or related objects as well as many non-material aspects typical for mining a cultural landscape of international significance.

On the basis of this unique understanding, partners on both the Czech and Saxon sides of the Krušné hory Mountains have decided to come together to get this unique landscape put on the UNESCO’s list of World Heritage. To reach this goal they have prepared the project The Central European cultural landscape Montanregion Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří – the way to UNESCO’s world heritage list, supported through the Program Cíl 3/Ziel 3 and co-financed by the European fund for regional development.
The Czech project partners include the Ústecký Region (the project coordinator) and the Regional Museum in Most. Saxon partners are the Technical University - Bergakademie in Freiberg and Förderverein Montanregion Erzgebirge in Freiberg. Within the project they have also started a small cooperation with the Karlovarský Region.

Czech partners took over the Saxon methodology and by using it they have elaborated three pilot studies that reviewed the selected regions in the Eastern, Central and Western parts of the Krušné hory Mountains. Based on their results, the Ústecký and Karlovarský Regions provided references to the relevant municipal councils for the nominating procedure and both regions sent off their applications to be put on the list of national cultural heritage that shall be nominated for the UNESCO list of World Heritage. The mining cultural landscape Montanregion Krušnohoří/Erzgebirge is represented by six Czech cultural heritage places documenting a uniquely preserved landscape that was formed by mining activities for more than eight hundred years. These areas are the historical mining town of Krupka with its Starý Martin gallery, the Mědník hill in Měděnec, the historical mining town of Jáchymov, the town of Horní Blatná with the Blatenský moat, the mound at Boží Dar and the Mauritius mine in Hřebečná near Abertamy. Saxony has nominated 42 cultural heritage sites, including the historical mining towns of Freiberg, Annaberg-Buchholz, Marienberg and Schneeberg as well as other mountain landmarks including objects related to the connected industrial branches.

The chosen cultural areas from the Czech part of the Krušné hory Mountains were supported by the general manager of the Scientific Council of the National Heritage Institute. As a part of the unity plan, a Czech-Saxon nomination proposal to be listed on the Cultural Heritage Indicative List of the Czech Republic was prepared. In February 2012, the Krušnohoří Mining Cultural Landscape was put on the provisional list for UNESCO. At the same time, the Czech Republic and the Free State of Saxony agreed on cooperation that shall lead to the collective entry of the nominated landmarks to the UNESCO list of World Heritage.

Another output of the project is the elaboration of a common Czech-Saxon database for the Montanregion and saving identification data into a program developed by Saxon partners. The database catalogues all the mountain landmarks in the Krušnohoří region. In the Czech part of the database is the first overall list of mining objects that could possibly be declared cultural heritage sites in the future. It is supposed that after the database is completed, it will be made available for experts and in its modified version for mountain tourism also.

Recognition of the Central European Cultural Landscape Montanregion Erzgebirge/Krušnohoří as a UNESCO world heritage site is a unique chance to preserve the Krušnohoří region on both sides of the border as a vital and developing cultural landscape of exceptional importance for heritage, to make it well-known worldwide, thus bringing a new stimulus for its development.