Prague City Hall is pushing ahead in its efforts to fight visual pollution in the Czech capital. After banning giant bubble blowers and ‘street artists’ wearing animal costumes from the city centre, Prague councillors have now focused on excessive commercial advertising and shop window design, which harm the visual image of the historical centre.
Prague’s historic city centre has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1992. However, membership in the prestigious club could come under threat, at least according to a report by UNESCO experts who visited the Czech capital this summer. The Czech Minister of Culture has pledged to look into the matter, but City Hall officials say that the matter has been exaggerated.
A meteorological column erected on the Prague square Vítězné náměstí in 1914 has just been restored. It is one of only two remaining such columns in the Czech capital, though in the past they were a common sight in the city and indeed throughout the country. I discussed the restoration job and more with Eva Heyd of the Czech National Trust, who initiated the project.
Just to the right of Prague’s famous mediaeval astronomical clock on Old Town Square, where tourists congregate in droves on the hour to see “The Walk of the Apostles”, lies an attraction of an altogether different nature. For one thing, it’s a mere century old, rather stinky, and only open to the public once a year. I went along on the tour – so you don’t have to.
Planned repairs to Prague’s Powder Tower landmark have postponed until
next year, Czech Television reported. The project was put back after a
delay in a survey into the state of the structure, which was completed in
The Powder Tower will be surrounded by scaffolding when it is being cleaned, a process that will make it lighter in colour. It is also set to get a new staircase and electrical system.
It will be the biggest renovation job since the end of the 19th century, when the structure attained its present form.
A large piece of graffiti on Charles Bridge, which was recently sprayed on the famous structure by two German tourists, mysteriously disappeared over the weekend. Official clean-up works on Charles Bridge, which were expected to take about two weeks, got underway on Saturday morning. However, someone secretly removed the graffiti that same night.
Part of Prague’s famous astronomical clock was mistakenly painted over
during renovation work last year, Czech Television reported. The error
concerned part of the clock face showing astronomical events. The Prague
authorities discovered the blunder and had that section correctly repainted
some weeks ago.
Czech Television said experts from the Czech Academy of Sciences and the Ministry of Culture had been critical of the renovation project, which was the most extensive in several decades. The medieval clock is located in the tower of Prague’s Old Town Hall and is visited by millions of tourists every year.
Prague Castle held an open day on Saturday allowing the public to see parts
of the complex that are normally inaccessible. The free of charge event was
held to mark to start of the summer season at one of the country’s most
As well as getting to view the rooms where the president appoints governments and welcomes foreign dignitaries, visitors could peruse presents given to the head of state by visitors and a mock-up of a state dinner table.
The Office of the President is this year celebrating its centenary. Marking that anniversary, interwar presidential seals, copies of the Order of the White Lion (the highest state honour) and period documents were put on display on Saturday.
The Spanish Synagogue in Prague is set to close the public at the end of
May due to renovations, the Jewish Museum informed on Thursday. The
monument, built in the late 1860s in the Moorish style, is expected to
re-open at the end of next year. The aim of the renovation works is to
modernize the exhibitions and improve the visitor facilities.
The Spanish Synagogue is one of the most visited historic sights in Prague. Last year it attracted over 460,000 people. It currently houses an exposition on the history of the Jews in Bohemia and Moravia in the 19th – 20th century and also serves as a concert venue.