The Czech support for the conservation of the Memorial
The Czech Ministry of Defence will support conservation work at the Auschwitz Memorial to the tune of 1.3 million koruna (217 thousand zlotys). The amount will be allocated to the project entitled "Preventive conservation work on selected elements of the historical fence of the former German Nazi concentration and extermination camp Auschwitz-Birkenau".
The agreement in this regard was signed on 12 November by the director of the Auschwitz Museum, Dr. Piotr M. A. Cywiński, and the Czech Defence Attaché, Col David Franta, accompanied by Ambassador Dr Ivan Jetřáb.
'Although Museums are currently experiencing a tough time during the pandemic, our primary and permanent duty is to protect the historical remains of the Memorial. Czechia already supports the Auschwitz-Birkenau Foundation, and this additional support will make it feasible to implement a specific conservation project. I am incredibly grateful for this support,' said Piotr M. A. Cywiński,
'The funding will allow for a review of the preservation state of the reinforced concrete elements of the historical fence of the former camp. It will also allow us to prepare photographic, descriptive and drawing documentation, as well as develop a conservation program for any elements of the fence that are found to be deteriorating. Conservation of selected parts of the fence will also be undertaken to the extent permitted by the donation amount,' said Rafał Pióro, deputy director of the Museum.
The project is scheduled to be completed by the end of 2022.
In the first months of Auschwitz's existence, the camp was surrounded by a makeshift barbed-wire fence strung up on wooden stilts. Shortly afterwards the stilts were replaced with concrete poles. A typical fence post was 3.3 m high and had 24 ceramic insulators. Concrete slabs were placed under the fence to prevent prisoners from digging tunnels.
Today, the Memorial is surrounded by over 13 km of fence consisting of more than 3600 concrete poles.