Open Monument Day in Utrecht

On Saturday 8 September, more than 70 monuments in Utrecht will be open to the public. The themes of Utrecht in Europe, and Europe in Utrecht will be key as we will be able to see the long lasting and fascinating relationship between Utrecht and Europe.

Our monuments not only tell the story of Utrecht. Anyone walking through the city can see in many places that European history has left its mark in Utrecht. At the same time, Utrecht and Utrecht residents have contributed in turn to the Europe of the past and present. During Open Monument Day 2018, the monuments that tell these stories are central.

Visitors will be able to ask what was the role of Utrecht in the Roman Empire and what was built during that period that still remains. How important was our city of Utrecht in medieval Europe? You will be able to follow in the historical footsteps of European key figures like Charles V, Pope Adrian VI and Louis Napoleon. All around us in Utrecht we can see the influence of European trends in architecture.

We will also be able to see the important influence science has in Utrecht as well as at our university and see the long lasting influence of Utrecht scientists in Europe, both now and in the past.

We must also remember that there is a national September theme month ‘Beladen Erfgoed’, which looks at the darker sides of our history, but one that should never be forgotten as other topics are discussed, such as Utrecht in the Second World War or the historical traces of slavery in the city.

We are thus celebrating The Open Monument Day 2018 and the European Year of Cultural Heritage, where the entire history and cultural heritage of the continent will be acclaimed throughout Europe.

More than seventy monuments will be opened and showcased between 10.00 and 17.00, divided over four themes: traces of European history, Utrecht: city of science, Heritage and Water.

Photo credit: Rijksdienst voor het Cultureel Erfgoed, Voorzijde standbeeld, close-up – Utrecht – 20364219 – RCE, Size, CC BY-SA 4.0

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Jon Wilkins

Jon Wilkins is Welsh and lives in England. He is a writer. A Europhile and Remainer, he is a regular visitor to Utrecht and has set his crime novel series in the city.

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