Protests take toll on visitors to museums in Bangkok

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Most of you would be familiar with the protests going on in Bangkok, which have recently claimed lives due to clashes between the protesters and the authorities. The Fine Arts Department also report that museum visitorships have suffered greatly because of the protests, as the majority of the museums in Bangkok are located near the protest areas, and in some cases protesters have mistakenly stormed the museums!

Museums count conflict cost
Bangkok Post, 10 April 2010
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Thailand prepares more sites for the world heritage list

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Thailand announces ongoing fact-finding programmes to propose five new sites into Unesco’s World Heritage Site list by next year. Among the sites are the ancient cities of Chiang Saen and Suvannakhomkham, which shares Laotian territory; the Lanna kingdom in the north, as well as the Srivijaya-Nakhon Si Tammarat cultural route.

Slanted Roof
photo credit: The Wandering Angel

Ministry to seek heritage status for ancient cities
The Nation, 4 June 2009
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Squatters damaging ancient Sukhothai

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The Thai Fine Arts department is sounding the alarm bells over the actions of squatters who are encroaching into the lands of the ancient Thai capital, Sukhothai. It doesn’t sound as if the squatters are damaging the site, I wonder if dialogue can be initiated between the squatters and the Fine Arts Department to come to a mutually beneficial agreement?

Sukhothai, Thailand
photo credit: minikin_hvh

Squatters are ‘damaging ancient ruins’
Bangkok Post, 11 March 2009
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Thai Srivijaya to be a World Heritage Site?

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May thanks to Andy for the heads up. The Thai Fine Arts Department is hoping to propose three new sites in Thailand: Lanna, a section of the Chao Phraya river in Bangkok and the Srivijaya ruins in Southern Thailand.

Slanted Roof
photo credit: The Wandering Angel

Anusorn pushes for listing of Thai sites
Bangkok Post, 17 June 2008
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Sukhothai Online

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I’m currently in Thailand now, looking up some research for my thesis and with any luck I’ll be the UNESCO World Heritage site of Ayutthaya today. On that related note, the other ancient Thai capital (considered the “first” Thai capital in fact) Sukhothai is the subject of a newly launched website by UNESCO and the Thai Fine Arts Department.

UNESCO and Fine Arts Department to Launch New Website for Sukhothai, Si Satchanalai and Kamphaeng Phet
UNESCO World Heritage news, 27 March 2008
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Poor Custodians of Rich Heritage

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24 October 2007 (Nation Multimedia) – The Nation’s editorial bemoaning the fact that Ayutthaya might be removed from the World Heritage Site list, calling it a “national embarrassment”.

Poor custodians of rich heritage
The possibility of Ayutthaya being axed from the UN World Heritage List is a wake-up call to Thailand

The government and people of Thailand celebrated the inclusion of the historic city of Ayutthaya on the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation’s World Heritage List in December 1991 with great pride and joy. In the immediate few years that followed the decision, while Thailand was still in the first flush of enthusiasm, great efforts were made to preserve the historical park, which includes the ruins of the royal palace and the ancient Buddhist temples that were destroyed in 1767 by the invading Burmese.

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Saving Ayutthaya

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18 & 19 October (Nation Multimedia) – The prospect of de-listing Ayutthaya from UNESCO’s World Heritage List seems to have sparked some editorials in the Thai Newspaper, The Nation. The second article also talks a little about the fall of Ayutthaya to the Burmese in 1767.

Ayutthaya. Creative Commons photo by Joerg Riechel
Creative Commons photo by Jeorg Riechel

Ministry rings alarm bells over Ayutthaya
Historic town on verge of being taken off World heritage list
by Pakamard Jaichalard and Chularat Saengpassa

Culture Minister Khunying Khaisri Sriaroon yesterday said it would be “unfortunate and embarrassing” if Unesco removes the Historic City of Ayutthaya and Associated Historic Towns from the World Heritage list following threat of encroachments from rapid development.

Khaisri had received an initial report from the Fine Arts Department that the site, which was included in Unesco’s World Heritage List in December 1991, had problems with city planning that might lead to its exclusion from the list, the minister said.

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