SPATIE, the landscape architecture research unit of KASK & Conservatory – University College Ghent, is one of five partners in Innocastle, a new Interreg Europe project. They develop the general research methodology and are responsible for the execution of the project in the West-Flemish region of ‘Bulskampveld’.
The current policies managing historic castles, manors and estates are sometimes outdated and offer few chances for this European heritage to develop to its full potential. Innocastle aims to have a good look at these policies and provide recommendations so that, in the future, this specific European heritage could flourish.
Mostly located in rural and remote areas, historic castles, manors and estates are often unknown to the general public and tourists. They have the potential to become powerful drivers for rural development and innovation. However, this requires a shift of paradigm in governance and support.
The partnership of Innocastle consists of four European regions and a knowledge partner (the National Trust). The four regions will work for 4,5 years on remodelling the current regional and national policies to better reflect the trends and future requirements, such as:
- place-based approaches
- need for economic and environmental resilience
- multi-actor involvement.
Innocastle’s approach is innovative and holistic. It aims to revitalise these hidden treasures by adapting policies to further empower local stakeholders, private investors and cross-sectoral partnerships.
The project partners are Provincie Gelderland (NL), The National Trust for Places of Historic Interest or Natural Beauty (UK), National institute for Heritage (RO), Regional Government of Extremadura (ES).