Press release: Sustainable Management of Historic Rural Churches in the Baltic Sea Region (SMC)

Conservation Centre “Kanut”(Estonia) in co-operation with Gotland University (Sweden) and Tallinn University of Technology (Estonia) have started a project „Sustainable Management of Historic Rural Churches in the Baltic Sea Region” which is part-financed by European Union Central Baltic INTERREG IV A Programme 2007-2013. The budget of the project is 884 447€, ERDF funding applied for 686 242€ and amount of eligible national funding 198 205€. This project will close at the end of 2013.

This project develops innovative management strategies as well as cost-effective and sustainable conservation and maintenance methods for historic rural churches. It also aims to raise an awareness of congregations and local communities on the subject of sustainable management of those buildings.

Historic rural churches are common landmarks to all states around theBaltic Sea. Once they were busy centres of the communities, but nowadays historic churches have lost their central position in society, especially in rural areas. Most of these buildings are listed as monuments and are considered to be valuable cultural assets and have strong indirect economic potential as tourist attractions. However, small congregations are having problems with managing those magnificent buildings.

The project arranges seminars and trainings for specialists, students and members of communities. Research and analysis of best practice available in different sources is carried out. Field measurements are done to have an overview of indoor climate conditions and hydrothermal performance of building fabric. Additionally, researchers carry out in situ and lab research of current conservation materials and historic plaster and render as well as research on current conservation methods. The project also tests a 3D modelling for documentation solutions.

More information: Kaire Tooming (Project Manager)