The award ceremony was held in Lisbon on 1 June, in the presence of TRH the Prince and Princess of Asturias.
On 1 June, the European Union awarded the Ene.Museo Nacional de la Energia the Cultural Heritage Conservation Prize, in acknowledgement of the rehabilitation work carried out on the former power station at Ponferrada, transforming one of the buildings into a national energy museum. The award was picked up by Esther Aparicio, technical manager of Ene.Museo, and Toni Vilanova and Jorge Suarez of Impulso, the two architects responsible for the project.
The award ceremony took place at the Jeronimos Monastery in Lisbon (Portugal), as part of the annual Europa Nostra European Heritage Congress. The ceremony was attended by THR the Prince and Princess of Asturias, the President of the Portuguese Republic, Anibal Cavaco Silva, Androulla Vassiliou, European Commissioner for Education, Culture, Multilingualism and Youth, and Placido Domingo, president of the NGO Europa Nostra.
In addition to Ene.Museo, prizes were awarded to another 25 cultural projects from all over Europe, chosen from a total of 226 initiatives from 31 countries. Four other Spanish projects featured among the award winners: Number 2 Blast Furnace at Sagunta Port, the fortifications of Pamplona, the Nolla Palace at Meliana (Valencia) and the Royal Spanish College in Bologna (Italy).
The prizes are awarded on an annual basis by the European Union and the NGO Europa Nostra. The awards are given in four categories: conservation, research, dedicated service by individuals or organizations, and education, training and awareness-raising. Each category has its own jury comprising independent experts from all over Europe.
The conversation work on the former power station at Ponferrada, now Ene.térmica – the first facility opened to the public by the Ene National Energy Museum – was carried out between 2008-2011. The jury placed significant emphasis on the exceedingly respectful rehabilitation that has managed to maintain an atmosphere reminiscent of the past that allows visitors to easily understand the process of how coal was transformed into electricity and to learn about the working and living culture formed around this economic activity.
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