Since January 2019, the Art of Freedom Foundation has been taking part in a working group created at the German Embassy in Warsaw, aimed at restoring the palace in Sztynort.
The conceptual work of the working group is supported by persons with expert knowledge in their relevant fields (e.g., conservation and restoration of historic buildings, history, and cultural studies), along with high-ranking officials like the German Consul General Cornelia Pieper and the Governor of the Varmian and Masurian Voivodship, Gustaw Marek Brzezin, former Mayor of the Commune of Ostróda.
Together and with joined forces we are restoring the former glory and lending a new look to the estate that once belonged to the von Lehndorff family.
This initiative has led to the successful start of renovation work in the palace under the watchful eye and supervision of the conservator of historic buildings and ancient monuments and, towards the end of 2019, the German Bundestag released the second tranche worth €500,000 for revitalisation purposes.
The palace in Sztynort is not just an architectural gem as it is surrounded by a beautiful park and is primarily is a historic landmark linked to the German resistance movement. It was in this very palace that secret discussions were held and the assassination attempt on Adolf Hitler with the involvement of Heinrich von Lehndorff was planned and executed on 20th July 1944. The story of the failed assassination attempt at the Wolf’s Lair, Führer’s headquarters at the time—which is actually not far from Sztynort—is shown in the film Valkyrie starring Tom Cruise as Colonel Claus von Stauffenberg. That was when Sztynort or Steinort, as it was originally called, for many became a symbolic place that advances the European idea of peace and community.
The Art of Freedom Foundation—due to its mission—is co-creating the multiannual cultural and educational programme for the palace, and the first activities, in which we took active part, have been carried out in August 2020. You can read about them in the News section, here and here.
As an organisation promoting the concept of freedom, we firmly believe that a common and shared cultural heritage is a valuable repository from which we can draw, regardless of our nationality, native language, sex or age. This is the European legacy that is well worth cultivating and nurturing.