Newsletter Sharing Heritage Expertise Online version
Sharing Heritage Expertise No.5, October-November 2018
Antoni, Fatahillah Square, in ‘Heritage in Transition’ (photo: Isabelle Boon).
Welcome to our Autumn edition! Explore how the Dutch deal with heritage in the Netherlands and abroad through our feature article about adaptive reuse and meet our maritime archaeology partner, Historic England’s Conservation Team. If you would like to know more about our shared cultural heritage projects and activities, the themes and the context in which they are carried out, you can check out our new brochure, available here. Happy readings!
Example of reuse in the old Philips company buildings in Eindhoven – a building designed to accommodate housing, offices, nurseries and other functions (photo: Igor Vermeer).
Reuse, redevelop and design – how the Dutch deal with heritage in the Netherlands and abroad
What to do with historical structures in urban settings that have lost their original function? This question is especially pertinent in contexts where there is an urgent need to revitalise historical inner cities due to urban decay, as a result of over- or underdevelopment. One solution is adaptive reuse – an expertise which the Netherlands in general and the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands (RCE) in particular have developed through many years of practical experience. With the book ‘Reuse, Redevelop and Design. How the Dutch Deal with Heritage’, a travelling exhibition and our current article, the Shared Cultural Heritage programme of the RCE aims to share this knowledge and to learn from its national and international partners about their own experiences with adaptive reuse.

Read the article here
Angela Middleton (left) and a student conservator (right) looking at thimble chest recovered from the Rooswijk site (photo: Historic England/Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands).
Meet our Partner: Historic England’s Archaeological Conservation team
Historic England is the counterpart of the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands (RCE) in the United Kingdom, as the public body which helps people care for, enjoy and celebrate England’s historic environment. England’s maritime heritage reveals important information on the country’s activities concerning leisure, conflict and commerce through time. For this reason, one focus of Historic England’s mission is the support of research activities aimed at discovering, protecting and understanding maritime archaeological sites.

Upon the discovery of a foreign ship or other underwater archaeological remains in British waters, collaborating with international partners is an essential part of Historic England’s work. An example of that is the collaboration between the RCE and Historic England (established in 2016) on the research of the Dutch East Indiaman ship the Rooswijk off the coast of Kent, which has proven to be a vital element in making this a successful project. After an excavation, archaeological conservation is carried out in Historic England’s laboratory in Fort Cumberland (Portsmouth). Recovered objects are investigated through the use of a diversity of techniques, including X-radiography, optical and electron microscopy, X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy, vacuum freeze dryer and airbrasives. Karla Graham and Angela Middleton are the archaeological conservators that provide consultation on investigative, remedial and preventive conservation of objects from marine and terrestrial sites.

If your organization would like to explore the possibility of a partnership with Historic England or receive expert advice on archaeological conservation, please contact Karla Graham ( or Angela Middleton (

Managing indoor climate risks – new web page \\ The website of the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands has a new web page especially dedicated to managing indoor climate risks in museums. The decision model for managing indoor climate risks developed by experts of the RCE allows practitioners to make use of scientific methods to face their challenges in a more suitable way. On our new web page, you can find detailed information about this field of expertise and useful resources for your work. Please go to for more information.

Workshop Risk Management for Collections
\\ 7 – 13 November \\ As part of the collaboration between the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (OPRHP) and the RCE, a workshop on Risk Management will be given by Bart Ankersmit and Renate van Leijen (RCE). It will consist of a 1-day risk management introduction and a 2-day in-depth workshop on site, and it will take place in three cities: New Paltz, Albany and Utica. The participants will learn about the relation between (cultural) values, susceptibility and exposure that make up the risks for collections, and will be introduced to the QuiskScan method and the so-called ABC-method. As part of the workshops, participants will also carry out a risk analysis on site in Albany.

Dutch Masters Abroad – Masterclass at the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj Vastu Sangrahalaya (CSMVS), Mumbai (India) \\ 29 October – 1 November \\ The workshop was organised by the Foundation for Cultural Inventory (SCI) together with the MACC (the restoration department of the CSMVS). Lia Gorter (SCI) explained the importance of digitising art collections. Bernard Vermet (SCI) highlighted the characteristics of the art historical collection. With Kate Seymour (SRAL), the participants examined the Dutch panel paintings from the seventeenth century and drew up a treatment plan. The workshop was carried out with the staff members of the MACC, with the support of the RCE, DutchCulture and the Netherlands Embassy in India, and it provided new insights into the management and preservation of historical collections of Dutch Masters across borders.

Restoring Sounding Heritage in Sri Lanka \\ 8 – 27 October \\ Based on an earlier assessment visit from the RCE (Rudi van Straten), this restoration project is a collaboration between the Embassy of the Netherlands in Colombo, the Dutch Reformed Church in Galle, the Wolvendaal Church in Colombo and the RCE. Two Dutch organ builders, Hans and Jos Elbertse, together with Rudi van Straten and local craftsmen, started the first phase of the restoration works on the historical pipe organs in the churches mentioned above.

Expert visit from the USA \\ 8 – 12 October \\ Experts from the New York State Museum (Jennifer Lemak-Buff), the Dyckman Farmhouse Museum (Naiomy Rodriguez) and the New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation (Michele Phillips and Travis Bowman) visited the Netherlands for a knowledge exchange programme organised by the RCE and DutchCulture. The main theme of the visit was 'Understanding Dutch Material Culture'. The experts from the USA met many colleagues and visited many Dutch heritage institutions, including the Bureau Monuments and Archaeology of the Municipality of Amsterdam, the Boijmans van Beuningen Museum in Rotterdam, the Municipal Archaeological Service of Delft, the Openluchtmuseum in Arnhem and the National Archives in the Hague. The four experts also gave presentations on the challenges they deal with in their work, at the monthly lecture organised by ICOMOS Netherlands, on 10 October at DutchCulture.

Heritage & Spatial Planning
Workshop on Historical Urban Landscapes in Muntok, Indonesia \\ 7 – 9 November \\ Workshop organised by the Pan-Sumatran Network for Heritage Conservation with the contribution of RCE (Peter Timmer and Jacqueline Rosbergen) \\ Ever since Muntok, a town located on the island of Bangka, lost its central position in tin mining, it has been searching for new perspectives for development. Do the tangible and intangible historical features offer possibilities for the revitalisation of the town and its surroundings? This is one of the topical questions to be researched during the workshop. The RCE will support the workshop by making use of UNESCO’s Historic Urban Landscape Approach.

Conference ‘Empowering Cities and Citizens’, Rotterdam \\ 6 November \\ The Institute for Housing and Urban Development Studies of Erasmus University Rotterdam (IHS) will celebrate its 60th anniversary by organising the conference 'Empowering Cities and Citizens', which will feature contributions from the RCE. The conference will be held at the iconic Maassilo complex in Rotterdam and some of the Shared Cultural Heritage Programme’s projects will be presented. The RCE’s exhibition ‘Reuse, Redevelop and Design’ will be linked to the session on the reuse options of the Maassilo and the RCE’s documentary on Westfort Village will be screened during the session on ‘Slum Upgrade and Heritage’. More information can be found on

Reuse in Moscow, Russia \\ 8 – 12 October \\ The RCE (Jean-Paul) and SteenhuisMeurs (Paul Meurs) gave a workshop in Moscow on the redevelopment of industrial sites along the Yauza River, organised by the Union of Moscow Architects. Moscow is currently facing a socio-economic change from an industrial to a post-industrial society, thus requiring an adaptation of the existing building stock to current needs. The workshop explored the potentials for adaptive reuse of the vacant industrial sites. The workshop is part of a larger programme on Reuse organised by the Embassy of the Netherlands in Moscow, and it is a follow-up of the Training on Urban Heritage Strategies for Russian Professionals held in Rotterdam in 2017.
Maritime Archaeology
International Workshop: Dutch Colonial Heritage (Taiwan) \\ 15 October \\ An international workshop on ‘Dutch Colonial Heritage: an archaeological perspective’ was organised by the NCKU University in Tainan. Dutch experts from the RCE and Leiden University (Martijn Manders), the University of Amsterdam (Ranjith Jayasena) and the New Holland Foundation (Oscar Hefting) were asked to share their knowledge on the VOC, forts and maritime heritage with their Taiwanese colleagues. Tainan is known as the place where, in 1724, the VOC founded the Zeelandia fort. The NCKU University is interested in pursuing the country’s historical link with the Netherlands and the Dutch organisations mentioned above are eager to contribute.

Visiting scholar from the South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA) \\ 3 – 6 October \\ Lesa La Grange, archaeologist and acting manager of SAHRA, came to the Netherlands to discuss a cooperation project that SAHRA and the RCE have set up. The project is executed under the Shared Cultural Heritage Programme of the RCE and is called ‘Modern Oral History: Dutch Wrecks in South Africa’. Its goal is to gather information about the history of modern salvage (between the 1960s and the 1990s) on Dutch historical shipwrecks in South African waters. Lesa La Grange also gave two lectures to students at the University of Leiden on the subject of maritime archaeology, management and South African maritime landscapes.

2018 ‘International Fields of Conflict’ Conference, Mashantucket (USA) \\ 27 September \\ From 26 to 30 September, the 10th Biennial ‘International Fields of Conflict’ Conference was hosted by the Mashantucket Pequot Museum & Research Center in Mashantucket (Connecticut). This multidisciplinary forum was organised to discuss aspects of battlefield archaeology, indigenous conflict and diplomacy, military history, health and trauma during conflicts and historic preservation. Robert de Hoop (RCE) participated in the conference and gave a presentation during a session on Maritime Conflict Archaeology which focussed on the management of WWII warships. In his presentation, he talked about the case of three Dutch warships that disappeared from the Java Sea.
Sharing Heritage Expertise is the newsletter of the Shared Cultural Heritage Programme of the Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands. This programme follows from the International Cultural Policy Framework of the Dutch government. Other organisations executing the national Shared Cultural Heritage Programme are DutchCulture and the National Archives of the Netherlands, and the Embassies of the Netherlands in the 10 partner countries. For more information on their activities, see their respective websites.

For more information, please visit our website (English and Dutch) or contact the editor, Sofia Lovegrove ( We welcome comments and suggestions regarding the content of our newsletter.
Cultural Heritage Agency of the Netherlands
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