Network activities


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Network activities 2020

Newsletter December 2020

Seasons Greetings and current informationen at the end of the year.
The newsletter provides compact and clear information about important developments in network work, new marketing instruments and upcoming dates.

Büdingen (DE): Fortress town Büdingen becomes FORTE CULTURA station

With the signing of the membership application by Mayor Erich Spamer, the city of Büdingen becomes the latest FORTE CULTURA member. The fortress town in Upper Hesse not only has a picturesque old town with half-timbered houses and a fortified castle, it has also been protected for centuries by a well-preserved massive city wall with roundels.


The FORTE CULTURA region of Northern and Upper Hesse receives Büdingen as another strong fortress partner and condenses the tourism axis between Mainz and Erfurt. Further partners in Hesse are the fortresses Ziegenhain and Rüsselsheim.

Elbe Fortresses (DE-CZ): New FORTE CULTURA Imagefolder

In cross-border cooperation, the Elbe fortresses of Grauerort, Dömitz, Magdeburg, Torgau, Dres-den, Pirna, Stolpen, Königstein, Terezin and Prague have developed and financed new FORTE CULTURA marketing tools. Thus, an attractive image folder for the Elbe fortresses was produced in 3 languages, which provides an overview of the cultural heritage of the fortress monuments on the Elbe.


An additional depositor informs about the events of the FORTE CULTURA Cultural Summer Elbe Fortresses 2021, which is scheduled to start in Terezin in April 2021.

Dęblin (PL): New associate member on Vistula river

The Polish city of Dęblin is located east of the Vistula in the Lublin Voivodeship. From 1832, under the Russian government, the Ivangorod fortress was built as one of the strongest tsarist fortresses to secure the crossing of the Vistula.


A citadel directly on the Vistula and a bridgehead on the left bank were built using the bastion method. Later a belt of individual forts was added. Today Deblin is also a traditional location of the Polish Air Force with an Air Force Museum.

EFFORTS (BE): Annual Congress Online

The Belgian partner network EFFORTS has held its annual congress 2020 as an online event. Un-der the patronage of the municipalities of Oudenaarde (BE) and Sibenik (HR), about 60 members and partners followed the exciting lectures, among others from the European Cultural Route Institute.


The congress focused on a study on the socio-economic impact of fortress monuments on cities and regions. To this end, an online survey launched among all participants, to quantifying the socio-economic impact of the fortified heritage in Europe in order to highlight its importance even more strongly in relation to politics. The survey is open until 1 February 2021. We kindly ask all fortress monuments to participate.


For more information: EFFORTS Website

FORTE CULTURA contact tour Fortified Heritage Poland

FORTE CULTURA Vice President Agnieszka Zurawska-Tatala visited 10 Polish fortress sites on a 1-week contact tour to make them known to the cultural route FORTE CULTURA. Her route rans through Modlin, Warsaw, Krakow, Zamosc, Przemysl, Krzyztopor, Sandomierz, Lancut, Deblin and Lublin.

The positive conversations in many places showed the high interest in the marketing of fortresses in Poland via the cultural route FORTE CULTURA as well as in joint projects to promote fortress tourism and marketing.

Open monument Day 2020 – digital

On the Open Monument Day 2020 there were again exciting monuments to discover. Due to the corona situation, this time many locations invited innovatively for a virtual visit. Our member fortresses Federal Fortress Ulm or the citadel Mainz used this opportunity to draw attention to themselves and their valuable work for the preservation of the cultural heritage of fortified monuments in their city.

Launch of the FORTE CULTURA promotion "Fortress of the Week"

As part of the "FORTE CULTURA - Fortress of the Week" campaign, a regular member fortress with several posts on social media is portrayed every week.

The aim of the action is to draw the attention of a wider public to the exciting cultural heritage of fortress monuments and to present special highlights at our member sites.
Facebook, Instagram

European Fortress Day 2020

The European Fortress Day (EFD) is being organized by the FORTE CULTURA partner EFFORTS (European Federation of Fortified Sites), in 2020 with a new virtual concept. The European Fortress Day is part of the FORTE CULTURA initiative European Fortress Summer ( All members, network partners and non-members are invited to take part in this year's EFD.

All participating fortresses should submit contributions for their "Summer 2020" under Corona conditions. Photos or videos can be sent to Cette adresse e-mail est protégée contre les robots spammeurs. Vous devez activer le JavaScript pour la visualiser. until September 30, 2020. The most innovative submission wins the "2020 EFFORTS Award".

FORTE CULTURA launched Facebook and Instagram Account

FORTE CULTURA is now using social media to achieve greater reach via Facebook and Instagram. While the Instagram account is aimed more at the general public, the Facebook account is more inward-looking and describes the latest and network activities.

FORTE CUTURA®: Application for certification as “Cultural Route of the Council of Europe” submitted

The application for the certification of FORTE CULTURA® as a “Cultural Route of the Council of Europe” was submitted in Luxembourg right on time. FORTE CULTURA® is now officially a certification candidate, along with 15 other cultural route candidates. For certification, cultural routes must meet specified criteria, which are evaluated by independent experts from October to December 2020. This also includes field visits along the route and meetings with the cultural route management. Link to Cultural Routes: newsroom

Srbrna Góra (PL): Fortress Srbrna Góra becomes new network member

Srebrna Góra Fortress is the highest mountain fortress in Europe. Built between 1765 and 1777, it strengthened the defence of the Prussian state borders in Lower Silesia. The Silberberg fortress system consists of the bastion "Fort Donjon" - the heart of the complex, as well as the surrounding secondary fortifications of "Wysoka Skala", "Fort Rogowy" and "Fort Ostrog". The hills Of Chochol Wielki and Chochol Maly were also fortified. In sum, a powerful defensive complex was created, which could not be conquered by Napoleon Bonaparte in 1807.

Already at the beginning of the 20th century, parts of the old fortress were used for tourism, including hostels, res-taurants and exhibitions. During World War II, Silberberg was a prisoner of war camp for Polish officers (Oflag VII b).
The historical monument of the Republic of Poland in the first Polish "Fortress Culture Park"- since 2004 offers an attractive leisure and cultural program and is an outstanding example of historical fortification, modern renovation and use.

Berlin (DE): Cooperation agreement with EFFORTS expands network base and gives FORTE CULTURA members a voice in Brussels

The European Federation of Fortified Sites (EFFORTS), based in Brussels, was founded in 2017 in the Spandau Citadel. As a lobbying organization, EFFORTS is an interface between European institutions and fortress monuments or networks dealing with the preservation and use of European heritage of fortified monuments.

In addition to practical work on joint studies and projects on the cultural heritage fortresses, the cooperation agreement also includes that both networks expand their membership base by each other's associate memberships. As a result, the FORTE CULTURA network grows to 67 members from 17 countries.

Berlin (DE): General Assembly decides on the name and statutes of the network

At this year's virtual Annual General Meeting (AGM), far-reaching decisions were taken that have a lasting impact on our network and cultural route development. The most noticeable change is the name change from former "European Fortress Tourism and Fortress Marketing Network e.V." to "FORTE CULTURA e.V." with the subline "Network of the Cultural Route Fortress Monuments".


The decisions taken are aimed at achieving certification as a cultural route of the Council of Europe and classification as a non-government organization.

Magdeburg (DE): Route of Reformation and FORTE CULTURA conclude cooperation agreement

The world-historically significant age of the Reformation and the development of the modern fortress construction, albeit in a time-delayed manner, fall into a common epoch and have influenced each other. These historical similarities are now also the basis of a cooperation agreement between the two cultural routes

The aim of the cooperation is to provide impetus for the cultural-tourist, social and economic valorization of the cultural heritage of the Reformation and the fortress architecture. The cooperation partners are convinced that the existing interfaces open up development opportunities and synergies for both cultural routes.

The cooperation agreement was "drawn" during the virtual annual general meeting of the Reformation Route on 16 June.

Berlin (DE): Places of History e.V. strengthens network

The Berlin-based association organizes guided tours and excursions to architectural legacies from the Cold War period (barracks, airfields and bunkers).
In addition, the association is committed to making the most modern telecommunications bunker of the former GDR as a cultural bunker Strausberg accessible to the public. In autumn 2019, the approximately 300-metre-long access tunnel to the gallery tunnel was repurposed in a first stage. In addition, guided tours of the imposing monument were offered. Under the motto "Communication connects – friendship unites", the monument of the Cold War is to be gradually expanded into an extracurricular learning and educational centre and a meeting place for creative minds as well as for historically interested persons and will be reopened in 2021.


In addition, under the leadership of Martin Kaule, the association organizes fascinating trips to Lost Places and the fortress heritage of the 20th century throughout Europe and implements numerous book projects. With FORTE CULTURA®, the range and range of products on offer are to be expanded.

Berlin (DE): Handout "C19-consequences" for fortified monuments

The network office provides a comprehensive information and strategy paper on how to deal with the "COVID-19 consequences" in fortified monuments. This includes information and recommendations to ensure conditions for the most possible secure stay in fortress monuments, links to current funding programs in Germany, as well as ideas and suggestions for specific measures from various points of view.

Stade (DE): Grauerort Fortress becomes a new network member on the Elbe

The Fortress Grauerort, a Prussian fortress pearl on the Elbe, was built in the 19th century and developed under the association Festung Grauerort e.V. into an attractive cultural location in the Hanseatic city of Stade. The association signed the network membership in February 2020, making it the fourth member of the FORTE CULTURA® cluster Elbe fortresses after Königstein, Torgau and Dömitz.


With the accession, among others the marketing activities of the Grauerort Fortress in connection with the FORTE CULTURA® regional brand Elbe Fortresses are being extended to the European level.

Dresden (DE): Project meeting Elbe fortresses

At the end of February, representatives of the fortresses Grauerort, Königstein, Terezín (CZ), Torgau, Pirna, Magdeburg and Dresden (here State Palaces, Castles and Gardens Saxony GmbH) as well as the Elbe Cycle Path and of our network met in the Dresden Albertinum.


The meeting goal was the further development of the cooperation between the Elbe fortresses in tourism and marketing as a regional brand under the umbrella of the European Cultural Route fortified monuments FORTE CULTURA®. The focus of the meeting was the organization of the marketing initiative "CULTURE-SUMMER ELBE-FORTRESSES 2020". Here the next steps for joint marketing and mutual support could be developed, budgeted and decided.


The joint visit to the new multimedia productions "Fortress Xperience" and "Zwinger Xperience" formed the successful conclusion of the event.

Brussels (BE): LRE Conference and LREXPO 2020

The Royal Museum of the Armed Forces in Brussels was an impressive venue for the annual conference and Expo 2020 of the Liberation Routes Europe (LRE). Dirk Röder represented FORTE CULTURA® and the European fortress tourism and fortress marketing network. In addition to many new network contacts, there were also in-depth coordination to prepare the cooperation agreement between FORTE CULTURA® and the Liberation Route Europe, which is due to be signed at the FORTE CULTURA annual conference in Terezin in May.


Another interesting point was the concrete coordination of future cooperation with the fortress lobby network EFFORTS Europe, whose headquarter is also in Brussels.

Upper Rhine (DE/FR): Great response to the memorial weekend "75 years Unternehmen Nordwind"

In memory and commemoration of the numerous victims of the last major German offensive in the West 75 years ago under the name "Unternehmen NORDWIND", 18 fortress buildings opened their doors. On the weekend 10th-12th January 2020, 22 different events commemorated the warlike events of January 1945 on both sides of the border between Saar and Rhine. It included exhibitions, lectures, a historical tour with US vehicles and a "Battlefield Tour".


The response in Baden, Alsace, Bitscher Land and the Palatinate was overwhelming with a total of over 2,200 visitors and many press articles. The cross-border remembrance weekend brought together fortress structures and partners between the Saar and the Rhine in this form for the first time and laid the foundation for further cooperation and closer networking between the players in the common cultural heritage “fortresses”.    More information

Dömitz (DE): Fortified Ideal City Dömitz becomes new network member at the Elbe river

The Fortress Dömitz is largely known on the Elbe. It is far less known that the fortress is actually the citadel of the once fortified ideal city of Dömitz, which was built in the style of the Renaissance.


Mayor Reinhold Suhrau signed the membership in our network at the end of December, thereby strengthening the FORTE CULTURA® cluster of the Elbe fortresses. On the one hand, Dömitz's marketing activities are to be geared even more towards fortress tourism and, on the other hand, processes for the necessary renovation of parts of the fortress are to be initiated.

Rüsselsheim (DE): City Rüsselsheim becomes new network member at the Main river

The Rüsselsheim fortress is located directly on the Main and is now the second former Hessian state fortress in our network after Ziegenhain. The fortress houses the Rüsselsheim City and Industrial Museum and a fortress café.


Mayor Udo Bausch signed the membership at the end of November, which will now come into force with the new year.


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