BBC NEWS Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX     

BBC News World Edition
 You are in: Entertainment  
News Front Page
Africa
Americas
Asia-Pacific
Europe
Middle East
South Asia
UK
Business
Entertainment
Science/Nature
Technology
Health
-------------
Talking Point
-------------
Country Profiles
In Depth
-------------
Programmes
-------------
BBC Sport
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
EDITIONS
Tuesday, 20 August, 2002, 16:28 GMT 17:28 UK
UK arts urged to offer flood aid
Dresden's Zwinger Palace, foreground, Semper Opera, left, and cathedral, right
The Zwinger Palace's cellars were inundated
Foreign Office minister Denis MacShane has urged the British art world to offer help and expertise to European cities affected by recent flooding.

Mr MacShane and British Council boss David Green went to Florence in the late 1960s as students to help restore the city after it was damaged by similar flooding.

Now they want figures in the UK art and culture sector to consider doing the same for Prague in the Czech Republic and Dresden in Germany, where historic buildings have been evacuated to minimise damage to art.


Let us show solidarity with the German and Czech world of culture

Denis MacShane
Foreign Office minister
Dresden's Zwinger Palace was emptied of most of its stunning art collection before the cellars of the ornate building were swamped.

And the adjacent Semper Opera House will be closed for at least two months because of the flooding.

The British Council has asked its offices in the region to report on the damage done in the two historic cities.

Once their assessment is complete, they will recommend how British expertise can best help.

Common heritage

The initiative followed discussions between Mr Green and Mr MacShane, who said: "Britain is enjoying European art and culture in Edinburgh and at the Proms.

"Let us show solidarity with the German and Czech world of culture by offering every support to make good our priceless and common European heritage.

Denis MacShane
Mr MacShane helped out in Florence in the 1960s
"Once the flooding is over, if authorities in Prague and Dresden need extra help, it may be appropriate for British students to volunteer as David Green and I did.

"I'm sure everyone who cares for European culture and history will want to help. Our sister cities in Central Europe will not find their friends in Britain wanting."

Other casualties of the flooding include the submerged holocaust memorial at Terezin in the Czech Republic, historical archives in Prague and Czech orchestras, which have had instruments and other equipment ruined.

The UK has already flown out pumps and driers to Prague and offered 100,000 as immediate help to the Czechs to tackle general flooding.

In Dresden the water has reached the Frauenkirche, the city's cathedral, which has been restored with help from the UK-based Dresden Trust.


European havoc

Germany ravaged

Prague drama

Freak phenomenon?

FORUM

TALKING POINT
See also:

15 Aug 02 | Europe
15 Aug 02 | Entertainment
13 Aug 02 | Entertainment
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to more Entertainment stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Entertainment stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

News Front Page | Africa | Americas | Asia-Pacific | Europe | Middle East |
South Asia | UK | Business | Entertainment | Science/Nature |
Technology | Health | Talking Point | Country Profiles | In Depth |
Programmes