From archaeological sites to architecture, from medieval castles to folklore traditions and arts, Europe's cultural heritage is at the very heart of the collective memory and identity of European citizens. European rich national, regional and local diversity is a unique catalyst for exchanges between people of all ages, social backgrounds and cultures. The European Year of Cultural Heritage will be a truly European initiative with a series of events taking place at all levels: European, national, regional and local.
It will be an opportunity to involve citizens from all backgrounds, in particular children and young people, in events and projects emphasising Europe's heritage and values, helping to strengthen a sense of belonging to a European family. The objective is to allow increased access to heritage for all and encourage people to get involved in managing and caring for it. The Year will also provide the opportunity to debate, reflect on and make a 'quality leap' in preserving and restoring heritage. The involvement of Member States and cultural heritage stakeholders will be key to the success of the Year. In addition, the Year will highlight the strong economic role that cultural heritage plays. More than 300,000 people are directly employed in the European cultural heritage sector and 7.8 million European jobs are indirectly linked to cultural heritage, for example in tourism and building work, as well as ancillary services such as transport, interpretation services and maintenance and security of cultural sites.
The 50 European countries taking part in the European Heritage Days have decided to take active part or give credit to the European Year of Cultural Heritage through the common vision of "The Art of Sharing". For full list of countries being involved directly in the EYCH please visit europa.eu/cultural-heritage/