Funding for restoration of famous historical structures


A general view of Battersea Power Station in central London. — AFP

Famous historical structures to be restored under World Monuments Watch initiative.

NINE of the world's most famous historic buildings are set to undergo restoration works, thanks to a US$1.5mil (RM4.89mil) grant from American Express and the World Monuments Fund (WMF).

Endangered architectural masterpieces from Barcelona to Hong Kong will be restored with the funding, which is part of the twice-yearly World Monuments Watch (www.wmf.org/watch) programme, which calls international attention to threatened cultural heritage sites around the world. Each of the nine locations was listed among the at-risk sites identified by the initiative last October.

Sites set to receive the funding are Antoni Gaudi's Gell Pavilions in Barcelona, built between 1883 and 1887; the 18th century Tenyuji Temple in Ogatsu, Japan (which was destroyed in the 2011 Tohoku earthquake and tsunami); the churches of Saint Merri and Notre-Dame-de-Lorette in Paris, France; Pokfulam Village, a hillside settlement in Hong Kong, for preservation works and the installation of a community history centre; the 16th century Farnese Aviaries in Rome; the archaeology museum Fundidora Park in Mexico; Sulgrave Manor in Britain; Sir Giles Gilbert Scott's graceful Art Deco Battersea Power Station in London; and The House of Wonders, in Tanzania.

"These historic places are tied to their nation's identity and our grant funding will help ensure our world's incredibly rich history can be experienced by future generations," said Timothy McClimon, President of the American Express Foundation. — AFP Relaxnews

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