There are 1000 monuments in terminal state in Spain (and 11 have already disappeared)

The heritage red list has just been expanded up to 1,000 monuments, but it is not something to celebrate. All the works that are listed are about to disappear or lose all their architectural and cultural value. The latest addition has been the hermitage of Cuadrilleros, in Ledesma, Salamanca. A 13th century church that is in a state of “progressive ruin” with its roof already collapsed, according to the platform in charge of the report.

The remains of the medieval church that Franco gave to the United States are falling apart

The remains of the medieval church that Franco gave to the United States are falling apart

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Just take a look at the list to make sure of the huge amount of works at risk of extinction that trump the peninsula and part of the islands. This database belongs to the association in defense of the Hispania Nostra heritage, recognized by Unesco and which since 2007 has warned of the seriousness of the situation of a large part of the Spanish heritage.

The map depends on citizen involvement, as it is the people who issue an alert for the Hispania Nostra team of experts to travel to the area and analyze the status of the monument. in situ. In the group there are professionals from different fields, from archaeologists, restorers, architects, engineers or historians, but they also have a wide portfolio of external collaborators.

There are many reasons to introduce a work in the red list, but Hispania Nostra highlights the heritage value and social relevance. “Our philosophy consists of not making evaluations about which is worse or better. We work on the concept that heritage is only one and that everything deserves attention from society and the public authorities,” explained the spokesman Víctor Antona del Val to

Despite the highest budgets for Culture of Democracy this year (thanks to the European oxygen pump), they forget the heritage without protection. The item for Conservation and Restoration has been cut by two million and the Ministry of Iceta has only increased aid for Assets of Cultural Interest. That is, assets that do not have the maximum protection granted by law will not be part of these aid and a good part the Red List of Heritage will be out of this game.

“The Red List It should not be considered as an inventory or an academic work, but as a call to civil society to know, sensitize and act on the assets at risk included in it, “the association warns in the statement. Since the end of October of this year, the Red List It has incorporated eight monuments: the Dock of Valencia, belonging to the industrial technological avant-garde of the 70s; a lighthouse in Cartagena, Murcia; or the Castle of Salvatierra de Tromes, in Salamanca. All this adds up to a thousand monumental, military, religious and natural assets that spread throughout the Spanish territory, more specifically in the emptied parts.

One of these monuments is San Martín de Fuentidueña, in Segovia. A church whose apse is venerated in the Metropolitan Museum in New York, which Franco gave to the United States, while the structure that remained in Spain is falling apart. Castilla y León is the most affected community, with 356 works in the red list, followed by Andalusia with 166 and Castilla La Mancha with 115.

The lists black and green

Sometimes, the involvement of citizens and associations in defense of heritage manage to save a work. When Hispania Nostra knows that there are social groups concerned with preserving a specific monument, this becomes directly part of the green list.

Some of the lucky ones have been the Monastery of Santa María de Oia, in Pontevedra, the fortified Palace of the Zúñiga or the Altazaranas of Seville, which in 2016 faced an “absolutely inappropriate” restoration, according to a study, and which was redirected on time thanks to your complaint. There are 181 in total. The last one is the Sandoval Monastery, in Castilla y León. The repair carried out this summer by three hands by the Board, the Provincial Council and the City Council has achieved its difficult incorporation into the “green group”.

Unfortunately, there are times when the signs are not enough and the monuments end up buried in the blacklist Heritage. They are irreversibly lost works. The last, the west wing of the old Santoña Military Hospital, dating from the 18th century, has been demolished because the “interested entities improperly described it as an annex without artistic interest,” the report states. The intention is to build blocks of houses of between four and five heights, while the entire environment is nineteenth-century buildings with a maximum of three floors.

Along with the Cantabrian hospital there are ten other works “lost” or disappeared in this in memoriam. Including the garages of Cuatro Caminos of Madrid, demolished in 2021. The association continues to fight so that there is no more to swell the black ranks.


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