A few dozen volunteers turned out to kick off the 2012 activities at Szadvar castle.
On Thursday March 15th, beautiful weather awaited the association members, who were ready to kick off yet another year of Szadvar castle preservation.
The national holiday provided a long weekend opportunity to spend some time together, take care of official business, carry out the necessary spring cleaning and discover the surroundings.
The spring effort targeted the area around the old military road leading up to the gates as well as the outer courtyard. We wanted to improve the visibility of the ruins as well as prepare the ground for the summer work that is scheduled for August. The efforts will concentrate on conserving the medieval lavatory and continuing the excavation work that we had started last year.
We concluded the March activities with a group trip to the neighbouring hilltop where the ruins of a mysterious castle Ovar are hiding.
We invite all of our donors and castle enthusiast to join a week of excavations in August, it was a blast last year!
While the ruins of the castle of Szadvar sleep under the thick layer of white snow we can proudly look back at the 2011 achievements of out 5 year old nonprofit. Despite the worsening economic crisis in Europe with the help of our donors we were able to achieve more than in the year before.
The association was able to sponsor and assist on the preservation efforts of the northern wall where archeologists found and restored 3 medieval loopholes. In addition we organized a wildly successful archeology camp in the summer that gave some unforgettable memories to dozens of participants. Whether it was a 15th century polish coin, a lost bullet or a vase our members still recall the excitement of finding these artifact under four centuries of rubble.
This year we managed to reach another important milestone, in early December our friend Milan from Slovakia donated his time and effort to complete a geodesical survey of the full castle. As a result the current state of the ruins is preserved and can be used for any future restoration effort.
We are anticipating another great year in 2012. While the economic conditions are not favorable and securing grants is more difficult than ever, we believe that our donors will raise enough funds to repeat the archology camp in the summer. In addition using the results of the geo survey we will try to save the remaining wall of the former castle toilet that is about to fall down the hill within a year or two.
We would like to thank all of our donors for enabling us to carry out our mission. We would be also happy to host anyone who is interested in Archeology in the summer of 2012.
It all started 5 years ago and we wanted to make it a memorable 5th anniversary. This summer we organized not only conservation work but a week of archeology under the supervision of professional archeologists.
On August 1. two dozen volunteers occupied the outer bailey of Szadvar to start the first large scale archeology expedition. No one needed a reminder at 6 am that it was time to wake up. The enthusiasm was tangible in the air, the waiting was over. The lead archeologist designated 7 areas in the outer bailey and assigned a mix of volunteers and professionals to each one. In the following 6 days a total of 50 people dug deeper and deeper looking for walls, artifacts and treasures, locating the foundations of the outer and middle gatehouses and unearting the site of the blacksmith shop. People were thrilled to find Polish coins from the 15th century, parts of a pipe, various dishes, bullets etc. All of these artifacts bring us closer to understand how people lived in the castle 4-5-600 years ago.
A week of excavation required great physical sacrifice from our team, but as a number of volunteers commented after the event, they couldn't wait for next year do it again.
Before the excavation started a team of architects, archeologist and builders had begun work on the northern wall of the outer bailey. Thanks to grants and donations we we able to finance the research and conservation of this part of the walls. The archeologists found and restored three new loopholes and rebuilt a section of the wall before bad weather forced them to suspend the work. Luckily weather condition improved by mid August and the work can be finished in the next two week.
We are going to gather on the castle hill again in October to carry out our semi annual castle ground cleanup as well as take an excursion and spend time together as a team. This event would not have been possible without the donations of our supporters! Thank you and please consider helping us next year again!
Times passes by so quickly.
It was already five years ago that a group of people from all over the county ascended to Szadvar to dig out the ruins of the medieval castle from its 300 years Cinderella like dream. 5 years later again a few dozen volunteers gathered again in the valley of the Menes river at the Szalamandra house to clean up the castle from its winter sleep. It was a beautiful relatively warm day. We greeted our old friends and welcomed newcomers. We really appreciate that people spend their time and money to save a piece of medieval history.
The team climbed up the hill and reached the outer gate in 25 minutes. After short orientations smaller teams started cutting the foliage, collecting garbage and stones on the southern side of the castle.
We were especially pleased to welcome the representatives of Saros castle (Slovakia) whom came to Szadvar for the first time and we have every reason to believe that it is the start of a long term cooperation. On Monday the joined teams got into their cars and drove up to Saros to check out how the works progress up there.
Due to the grants and donations we are ready to start the conservation works in the summer on the eastern wall and provided we can raise an additional $3000 we will also conduct our first excavation workshop in July or August.
We would also love you to join any of these efforts. Please contact us for details if you want to have a medieval experience.
Dear Szadvar Supporters, Donors, Friends,Approaching the end of the year we would like to thank you for your support, contribution and hard work! Our collaboration has been recognized by the Hungarian Government on Dec 16th when our organization was given the Karoly Kos Award. The award has been given since 1999 to local organizations that according to the funders "have done an outstanding job protecting our local historical heritage". As the award justification stated:"Many of the castles that are far from the major tourist centers are in bad shape and disappear from our eyes year after year. Szadvar was part of this group until a group of volunteers decided to save it. The members of the Association cleaned up the courtyards, carried out a geodesical survey and started to conserve the walls and towers. The Association expanded its activities organizing a youth camp for children from 3 countries." As we look back at 2010 we feel immensely proud to see the remaining wall of the old 15th century palace preserved for the future as well the northern part of the outer courtyard unearthed. We are grateful that thanks to the donations and grants we were able to spend multiple occasions this year at the castle and make progress according to our long term plans. Judging from the increase of visitors we are on the right path to help this long forgotten castle wake up from its Cinderella dream and assist the economical development of the village of Szogliget.Thanks to our supporters we can optimistically look forward to 2011, despite the less than optimal economic conditions we are only a little bit behind with our fundraising goals and aim to complete the restoration of the northern wall as well as excavate the outer courtyard to learn more about the histroy of the castle. The excavations are expected to take place in August please let us know if you were interested joining us.Again, thank you for your support and please think about Szadvar in 2011!
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