As part of the certification process of the Places of Peace Route as a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe, the evaluator appointed by the European Institute of Cultural Routes, Ms Maria Gravari-Barbas visited last 8th February the town of Wermsdorf (Saxony, Germany) where the Castle of Hubertusburg is located in order to take contact with the work developed in this member of the Route.
Ms Gravari-Barbas was received by the Mayor of Wermsdorf, Matthias Müller, the President of ENPP, Eduardo Basso and Ulf Müller, member of Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association and Vice-President of ENPP.
At the Welcome Session performed on Wermsdorf Municipal Hall, it was also a matter of being present and expressing their involvement and support to the Route, numerous local, regional and state public and private entities, namely Mr. Matthias Haß, Minister of Finance of the State of Saxony, Frank Kupfer and Ms. Bärbel Schumann,  members of the State Parliament of Saxony Mr. Jens SpiskeMayor of Markranstädt, Ms. Ursula Fritzsche and Dr. Ulrich Hofmann, councilors in the Municipality of Wermsdorf, Mr. Kristian Kirpal,  President of the Chamber of Commerce and Crafts of Leipzig , Mr. Wolfgang Köhler, Dr. Sybille Hofmann and Ms. Martina-Elvira Lotzmann, members of Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association, Ms. Kathleen Schramm, Project Director of Leipzig Tourism & Marketing GmbH, Mr. Wolfgang Trommer, Prof. Klaus Wendler, Dr. Georg Müller, Mr. Hans Weinfurtner and Ms. Monika Buchwalder, members of Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association for Local Work of the Route, Mr. Paul Fischer, from Steinhaus Association (Bautzen, Saxony) the latest member of the Route, Hellmuth Matthes and Friedericke Maasch, from the Association for the Promotion of Altranstädt Castle (Saxony), member of the Route, Ms. Daniela Hollburg and Ms. Petra Förster, of the State Enterprise of Saxony for Real Estate and Construction and Mr. Gundolf Schmidt, representing the Association “Homeland Wermsdorf “.

After this session  Ulf Müller, Hellmuth Matthes and Paul Fisher made their presentation about the 3 places of the Route in Saxony (Hubertusburg, Altranstädt and Bautzen) as well as the Mayor of Markranstädt, followed by a period of questions and requests for clarification from Markranstädt, followed by a question period and requests for clarification from the evaluator, Mrs Maria Gravari-Barbas.

The evaluator then had the opportunity to visit the headquarters of Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association and the exhibition on it about the treaty of Hubertusburg, the “Window of Peace,” a memorial of the Treaty of 1763 which ended with the Seven Years’ War, the Palace of Hubertusburg where she made contact with the results of two important events organized by the association – Hubertusburg Talks and the Young Peace Prize.
The visit ended with a meeting between the evaluator and the members of ENPP Board to clarify the documentation integrating the application dossier of Places of Peace Route for Cultural Route of the Council of Europe.

The 2nd International Congress on World Civilizations and Historical Routes held on 16 and 17 September in the city of Sofia explored how tourism along historic routes can help to safeguard and promote tangible and intangible cultural heritage and concludes that historic routes can play a major role in revealing the unique history, culture and natural assets of territories along them, becoming a powerful promotional tool and a unique instrument to increase tourism competitiveness for many destinations.
Discussions centred on identifying best practices in tourism development, management and promotion that can help to harness the tourism potential of historic routes, enhance the value of their cultural heritage, and preserve their authenticity and successful examples were exchanged of well-developed and managed historic routes, with a focus on ways to maximize tourism’s socio-economic impacts for local communities and contribution to the Sustainable Development Goals.
The Congress also concludes thati n recent years cultural tourism has emerged as a major driver of demand, in line with travellers’ growing interest to immerse themselves in tourism ‘experiences’ such as local rituals and traditions.
The 2nd International Congress on World Civilizations and Historical Routes was organized by the World Tourism Organization (UNWTO) and the Ministry of Tourism of Bulgaria. ENPP was represented in the Congress by Ms. Mariana Assenova, former Minister of Tourism of Bulgaria and member of the Scientific Council of Places of Peace Route and by Ms. Bonka Yordanova, project expert on the Municipality of Kaynardzha, a Bulgarian member of ENPP.

On 26th and 27th of September an ENPP delegation was present at the 8th  Advisory Forum on Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe in the city of Görlitz (Germany), at the invitation of the European Institute of Cultural Routes, the Government of the Free State of Saxony and the Municipality of Görlitz.

The ENPP delegation was composed of its President, Eduardo Basso, the Vice-President, Ulf Müller, the Chairman of the AGM, Hellmuth Matthes and the Director of the Association  STEINHAUS, e.V. from Bautzen, Torsten Wiegel.

The Görlitz Forum focused on establishing synergies between the Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe and UNESCO and other international institutions classified sites.

The Peace Tour – Alcáçovas/Évora Monte (Portugal), an initiative of the European Network of Places of Peace and the Municipality of Viana do Alentejo operated by the tour operator RSI-Viagens, Estremoz, will return on Saturday, September 22.

The main purpose of the Peace Tour is to make known the places where the two Peace Treaties – the Treaty of Alcáçovas and the Convention of Evoramonte – were signed, which deeply marked the history of Portugal in the late 15th and early 19thcentury, respectively.

This is a one-day tour, to be held on Saturdays with planned departures from Lisbon (Gare do Oriente) and Évora (Portas do Raimundo/GALP), with the morning part dedicated to the village of Alcáçovas and the afternoon to be passed in the Castle of Evoramonte.

In Alcáçovas the participants will have the opportunity to visit the Paço dos Henriques, the recently recovered place where the Treaty was signed, the Garden of Shells annexed to the Palace and to attend a Historical Representation about the circumstances and the main consequences of the Treaty signed between King D Alfonso V and Prince D. João (future D. João II) by Portugal side and the Catholic Kings, D. Fernando and D. Isabel by Castile. There will be a visit to the factory Pardalinho Rattles, where visitors will be able to watch the Rattle Production, classified in 2015 as Intangible Heritage of Humanity, by UNESCO. Before lunch in a local restaurant with traditional Alentejo menu, visitors will still have the opportunity to get to know one of the most important economic activities of the village – the “Conventual Confectionery of Alcáçovas”.

After lunch, the tour will take the participants to Evoramonte Castle. Here, Tour participants will visit some of the most important examples of the Castle’s rich religious, civil and military patrimony: the Torre/Paço de Evoramonte, a national monument since 1911, unique in its style throughout the Iberian Peninsula, a work attributed to the Arrudas Architects by order of D. Teodósio and D. Jaime, the first Dukes of the House of Bragança; the Church of Santa Maria, currently dedicated to Nª. Sra. da Conceição, dating from the 12th century and the Chapel of Mercy built in the first half of the sixteenth century and in which highlights the central nave completely tiled with tiles from the mid-eighteenth century. In Evoramonte, participants will also attend a Historical Representation on the circumstances that led to the signing of the Convention of Evoramonte, between the liberals led by D. Pedro and the absolutists commanded by his brother D. Miguel and who put an end to the only civil war Portugal knew in its almost 900 years of history.

The Tour will end in the best way: a Thematic Dinner based on recipes collected by the well-known Portuguese Historian and Gastronomic Dr. Alfredo Saramago. Empadão de Pigeons Braves and Pork Loin with Honey and Rosemary will be the main dishes of a dinner served in environment of the time of the Convention.

Reservations can be made at the headquarters of RSI-Viagens in Estremoz or in the branch office in Évora (Edifício Santa Catarina, 12 – store 6), through the website, emails info.estremoz@rs-viagens. pt and or by phone +351 268 333 228 and +351 266 747 871.

In the Old Town Hall, one of the noble buildings of Evoramonte Castle (Portugal) recovered in 2016, opened last Saturday, August 4, a new space of visit on the initiative of a local wine company in partnership with the Civil Parish of Evoramonte , owner of the building.

The new space is made up of a regional product store, very well decorated and also has a visitor’s valence, and two large rooms designed for temporary exhibitions with free access to the public.

The space also provides access to the Clock Tower where it is possible to visit the old clock that marked the time in Evoramonte during long periods.

“Scriptum in Petris” is the 1st exhibition in the new space

With the opening of this new space, the 1st  exhibition was inaugurated and will be open to the public up to 22nd  September. “Scriptum in Petris“, by Ernesto Matos, is an exhibition of stones by artists from various places in the country, highlighting the painted stones of Inocência Lopes, a artist of Evoramonte (in the photo, a stone painted by this artist shows the façade of the House of the Convention , where on 26 May 1834 the Treaty of Peace of Evoramonte was signed).

On 28th November, Places of Peace Route was presented in the European Parliament during the meeting of EP’s Intergroup “European tourism development, cultural heritage, Ways of St. James and other European Cultural Routes” co-chaired by the Spanish MEP Francisco Millán Mon and with the support of Portuguese MEP Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar.

Faced with an audience of MEPs members of that Intergroup, the President of ENPP, Eduardo Basso and the Coordinator of Places of Peace Route, Apolónia Rodrigues had the opportunity to present the main objectives of these projects and its current state of development in Europe.

At the invitation of MEP Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar, an ENPP delegation composed of Eduardo Basso, President of the Board and Apolónia Rodrigues, coordinator of Places of Peace Route, participated in the Conference “Trends & Dynamics_17 – Mega Drivers for Future Tourism”, a conference promoted in Lisbon for the third consecutive year by that Portuguese MEP, member of the European Parliament’s Committee on Transport and Tourism. This year’s conference discussed fundamentally the increasing of new technologies in the tourism sector, the growth of tourist flows in some European cities and the working conditions in this sector and has as Keynote speaker  Mr. Taleb Rifai, Secretary-General of the United Nations World Tourism Organization (UNWTO).

MEP Cláudia Monteiro de Aguiar is also supporting the presentation of Places of Peace Route in the European Parliament scheduled for next 28 November.

On 28 November an ENPP delegation will visit the European Parliament (EP) in Brussels for a presentation of Places of Peace Route during the meeting of the EP Intergroup “European tourism development, cultural heritage, Ways of St. James and other European Cultural Routes” at the invitation of Spanish MEP Francisco MILLÁN MON, co-chair of that Intergroup, and with the support of the Portuguese MEP Cláudia MONTEIRO DE AGUIAR, member of the same Intergroup.

The Intergroup “European tourism development, cultural heritage, Ways of St. James and other European Cultural Routes” consists of 132 MEPs from all Member States and all political groups in the European Parliament.

This presentation was already being prepared some time ago, with the support of those two MEPs. Its implementation for this date was possible during a meeting held at the 7th Forum of Cultural Routes between MEP Millán Mon and the ENPP delegation present at the Forum held in the city of Lucca in Italy at the end of last September, shortly after the public presentation of Places of Peace Route. It is recalled that during this Forum was submitted the Places of Peace Route application for Cultural Route of the Council of Europe.

ENPP and its members spread throughout Europe have been paying increasing attention to the educational work of young Europeans. The last example comes from Germany where  the Hubertusburg Castle Friendship Association, a member of  ENPP, has established a collaboration protocol with the schools of the town of Wermsdorf where the Castle is located, which witnessed the signing of the Treaty of Peace that ended to the Seven Years’ War. Through this protocol, the students of 7/8 years realize guided tours and execute written works and  photography which are exposed later in the foyer of the Castle.

All the students participated” said Professor Gundolf Schmidt, the project’s head, in an interview with a local newspaper.

Places of Peace Route has submitted its application for  Cultural Route of the Council of Europe during the 7th  Advisor Forum on Cultural Routes held from 27 to 29 September in the city of Lucca, Italy. In its application form, which received the commitment of all its members, the Route states that “its theme – PEACE – is one of the most genuine European values ​​brought to this day through the experience and the memory of the places  of Europe where Peace was a fact, the places where Peace Treaties were signed”. The Route also emphasizes its contribution to strengthening mutual knowledge and exchange of experiences among the European peoples, its action in scientific historical research on the Treaties of Peace in Europe, the dissemination of a culture of peace in an educational perspective together with the younger generation as well as the decisive contribution it has made to the recovery and enhancement of the European Material Heritage.

The Places of Peace Route’s application includes 10 places from  8 countries (Germany, Bulgaria, Croatia, Slovakia, Spain, Hungary, Portugal and Romania) far exceeding the minimum required by the Council of Europe in this area.