Newsletter September 2021


Status of certification as a Council of Europe Cultural Route

Despite positive expectations as well as positive assessments by experts, the certification application of FORTE CULTURA was rejected by the EPA Governing Board. During the final evaluation by the Cultural Routes Institute, unexpected difficulties arose that need to be solved at the political level. 


The board of FORTE CULTURA e.V. regrets this course of events. Despite a Corona pandemic that has been devastating for the tourism and events sector, our network has achieved considerable development and reached important milestones. FORTE CULTURA will continue on its path and further distinguish itself as a European Cultural Route of Fortified Monuments and an international fortress network as well as a European brand for fortress tourism. The certification as a cultural route of the Council of Europe will continue to be strived for. 

FORTE CULTURA & EFFORTS Joint Scientific Committee

The FORTE CULTURA Scientific Committee is an organ of FORTE CULTURA e.V. and was established in 2018. Its task is to support the members of the cultural route in terms of content and science. The members of the committee are elected by the FORTE CULTURA General Assembly.


Further needs arise from the cooperation with EFFORTS, which is why a FORTE CULTURA & EFFORTS Joint Scientific Committee (JSC) is being established. The aim is the Europe-wide cooperation of scientific institutions and experts on fortification issues. On 7 July, an expert workshop was held in Hellevoetsluis, which outlined the JSC's field of activity, among other things. Please get in touch with us if you feel called to do scientific work on fortification heritage.

EU programmes launch project calls for the new funding period

The new EU funding period 2021-2027 is in full swing. First calls for funding projects are open, e.g. Creative Europe, Horizon Europe or Interreg Europe. 


  • EFFORTS and FORTE CULTURA have launched a first project application together with the city of 's-Hertogenbosch (NL) and the Fondazione Forte Marghera (IT). "EFFORTS Goes Green" (E.G.G.) aims to lay the basis for a sustainable future for the cultural heritage of the Fortified Monuments. The application was submitted in the Creative Europe Network Programme.
  • In the Creative Europe cooperation programme, the project partners Sibenik (HR), Brasov (RO), Grudziadz (PL), ECCOFORT (DE) and FORTE CULTURA under the leadership of the lead partner Verona (IT) have also submitted a project application. The "European Fortress Festival"project aims to bring together artists* and fortresses in a sustainable way.


Further project applications are possible. Please contact us if you are looking for project partners at European level or would like to implement project ideas together with us.

Four á Chaux, Lembach (FR): New FORTE CULTURA station in Alsace

The Four á Chaux in Lembach is an underground fortification of the 20th century Maginot Line. Run and staged by the Association des Amis de la Ligne Maginot de Lembach, tens of thousands of visitors marvel at the extensive facility every year. Many exciting features, from the retractable machine gun dome to the Escape Room, make the fort a popular destination in Alsace. We are looking forward to the now even closer cooperation with President Joseph Haensli and his team, which has already begun successfully within the framework of the Upper Rhine Fortress Cooperation.

Recapture the Fortress Cities project with specialist workshop series

This exciting EU project is organising a series of workshops on various topics related to fortress heritage. Project partners include the fortress city of Magdeburg (DE) and the Aussiger Kreis with the ideal fortress city of Terezin (CZ). FORTE CULTURA supported with an expert contribution on "Sustainable fortress tourism as a key for utilisation and economic effects".   More informationen to the project.


European Fortress Summer with overwhelming response on the Upper Rhine

With over 90 events between April and October, the 30 Franco-German fortress partners and museums are participating in the Upper Rhine Fortress Summer 2021, which is part of the European Fortress Summer. The initiative is accompanied by a social media campaign and the marketing tools produced (fortress flyer with map, stamp pass, travelling exhibition), which are in great demand.  To the website.

FORTE CULTURA meets Renew Europe in the fortress and confirmation town of Ziegenhain

At the end of August, the town of Ziegenhain and the EU parliamentary group Renew Europe used the European Fortress Summer as an occasion for a lavish summer festival on the parade ground in the confirmation and fortress town. Host Engin Eroglu (MEP) welcomed almost 200 invited guests, including Frauke Vos-Firnkes and Dirk Röder from the FORTE CULTURA board. In his speech, the latter illustrated the important role of Fortified Monuments for a free and sustainable Europe.

New certified Guides

FORTE CULTURA welcomes three new FORTE CULTURA certified guides: Susanne Wein and Michael Walter from the Upper Rhine region (DE) and Patricia Parra Irribarria from La Línea de la Concepción (ES).


Certification program for Tour Guides

FORTE CULTURA guides offer very special insights into the fascinating fortress worlds on our cultural route. Whether in historical costumes, on underground paths or with exclusive content, the tours with certified guides are always an experience.
You too can qualify as a tour guide with a FORTE CULTURA certificate.


Online fortress conference with 105 registrations from 17 countries

Sustainable Valorisation of Fortified Heritage - European best practice 

The joint scientific committee FORTE CULTURA / EFFORTS organised an evaluation conference on "Sustainable Valorisation of Fortified Monuments Cultural Heritage" on 6 May, hosted by Juraj Dobrila University in Pula (HR). Exciting contributions on best practices from Croatia, Poland, Italy, Montenegro as well as from FORTE CULTURA should help to stimulate transnational discussions and knowledge transfer on important topics for the fortified heritage. The conference showed the high demand for exchange on a European level. It is therefore intended as a prelude to further events. The recording of the conference can be viewed on the FORTE CULTURA YouTube channel.

4th symposium on the expansion of fortress cooperation on the Upper Rhine

The Upper Rhine region is one of the European regions with the most Fortified Monuments from 2000 years of history. At the latest when the fortress town of Germersheim joined FORTE CULTURA in 2017, a German-French cooperation network for fortress tourism was established in the Upper Rhine region. The 4th symposium dealt with the question of how cross-border tourism for the Fortified Monuments of the Upper Rhine region can be organised in cooperation with the European Cultural Route FORTE CULTURA. The practice-oriented contents provided information on the way as a Fortified Monument to a booked tourism destination. Concrete travel modules for fortress tourism on the Upper Rhine were developed in workshop sessions. The results will soon be posted on the FORTE CULTURA website.


Welsch exhibition "ONE FOR ALL" at the Rosenberg Fortress with attractive exhibition catalogue

To mark the 350th anniversary of the birth of architect Maximilian von Welsch in Kronach, there is a special exhibition worth seeing at the Rosenberg Fortress until the end of November 2021, as well as an accompanying series of specialist workshops. 


The magnificent book accompanying the exhibition contains not only the exhibition catalogue but also 12 highly interesting interdisciplinary essays and is available from Imhof Verlag for €29.95. Orders can be placed directly with the publisher:

Professional exchange at Dömitz Fortress

With its citadel and formerly ideal fortified city, Dömitz has a unique architectural ensemble on the Elbe. A renovation backlog due to lack of funding has now led to the closure of fortress areas. Initiated by FORTE CULTURA and supported by Marcin Gorski (Warsaw University of Technology and member of the Scientific Advisory Board of FORTE CULTURA), a first exchange of experts now took place on how to counter the situation.



FORTE CULTURA Annual General Meeting

The General Assembly 2021 will take place on 3 November as a face-to-face event in the Elbe Fortress Königstein (Saxony). You will receive your invitation and programme by e-mail shortly.

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EFFORTS Annual General Meeting and Congress

The EFFORTS Member Assembly will take place in Brussels on 30 November. The subsequent congress on 1 December will present the "EFFORTS Goes Green" funding application and address the question of how fortress heritage can contribute to the European Green Deal. The registration fee is 200 €. We will inform you as soon as registration is possible.

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Terezin Conference now in April 2022

The Elbe Fortresses Committee decides to postpone the Terezin Conference for the last time to 5-7 April 2022. As the associated funding project allows this time leeway, the participants do not want to and do not have to forego the benefits and visibility of a face-to-face event. The event will also mark the start of the European Fortress Summer 2022.

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Further Dates 2021

  • until October: Federal Garden Show in Erfurt (DE)
  • until November: Welsch exhibition "One for All" in Kronach (DE)
  • 11./12. September 2021: Open Monument Day Germany
  • 18./19. September 2021: Open Monument Day France
  • 24./25. September 2021: Westwalltag 2021 in Aachen (DE)
    Registration until 12.9.
  • 24. September 2021: Conference "Vallo Alpino" Franzensfeste (IT),
    Registration until 23.9.
  • 10. Oktober 2021: Citizens' Festival Rastatt (DE) as the conclusion of the Upper Rhine Fortress Summer, Corona developments permitting.


Further news and FORTE CULTURA Newsletter.


Since July 2020, regular FORTE CULTURA members are automatically associate members in EFFORTS and vice versa. To enable EFFORTS members to enjoy all the benefits of the cultural route in the future, FORTE CULTURA is now offering for ordinary EFFORTS members a welcome discount of 25% on the annual fee for the first 2 years. For further information, please contact the network office.

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