Cultural heritage is an investment. We participated in the European Historic Houses conference in Brussels.

Published: 31.05.2023

The European Historic Houses conference took place on May 23-24, 2023. It was organized by an international organization that brings together private owners of historic buildings. The Domus Polonoroum Association participated as a member of EHH. Our president, Paweł Esse, represented us at the beautiful Cercle Gaulois in Brussels.

Tuesday, May 23, was quite intense. In the morning, there was a conference summarizing the event and a roundtable discussion. Participants had the opportunity to learn about the HERIT MOOC project, which focuses on the use of information technology (IT) in managing historic buildings in the face of contemporary challenges. More information can be found in the article.

Next, as part of the European Year of Skills, a discussion was held on the development of relevant competencies in the cultural heritage sector. The experts Stefania Pignatelli (Representative of EHH) and Marzia Piccininno (CHARTER) participated in the discussion.

In the afternoon, Frédéric Faivre (Consultant for Product Marketing, Communication, and Innovation/Partner at The Next Mind) and Stephanos Germenis-Hildprandt, the owner of Blatna Castle, presented innovations related to artificial intelligence in the field of cultural heritage and shared valuable knowledge on the use of social media in building historical narratives (storytelling) that attract interest, highlight historical objects, and build their brand, becoming added value.

We should fight for equal treatment of private owners, just like public ones. We don’t work from 9 to 5; we work 24 hours a day and maintain historic sites without additional funding. We take care of our historical and national heritage, and yet we are outside the mainstream.

Paweł Esse, President of the Domus Polonorum Association

The second day of the European Historic Houses conference will be recorded in the annals of Domus Polonorum. It was on May 24, 2023, that we were officially approved as a member of EHH during the General Assembly. The acceptance of an organization from Poland was accompanied by enthusiastic applause from the audience. Congratulations to President Paweł Esse, who represented us in Brussels!

Stefania Pignatelli, EHH and Paweł Esse, President of Domus Polonorum

The day was marked by presentations from national organizations: Danish, British, French, and Italian. Suffice it to say that related associations in other countries have several thousand members, substantial budgets for promotional activities and legal support, offer a rich range of benefits to their members, and have an influence on local policies. They operate comprehensively, organizing seminars, training, and even providing tax advice related to historic sites. It happens that they discourage the purchase of properties that initially seemed attractive because the consequences of buying them would be economically devastating for the buyer.

Every 1 euro spent on historic sites in Italy generates 8 euros of income (!) in the area, building the strength of local communities.

Stefania Pignatelli, EHH

The presentation of Article 9 of the EPBD directive regarding the energy performance of buildings, which exempts historic buildings from strict regulations, was particularly important for owners of historic properties. It will soon be implemented in the European Union.

We publish photos from the conference thanks to the courtesy of European Historic Houses.

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