Heritage plaque recognises shared inheritance of Old Granary
On 19 April 2018, Western Cape Minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais unveiled a ceramic plaque to mark the provincial heritage status of the Old Granary Complex in Buitenkant Street, Cape Town.
This unique landmark, near the Castle of Good Hope, is of high cultural, social, architectural and historic significance. Over the years it was used as a Custom House, Town Granary, Magistrates Court, Offices for the Department of Public Works and a House of Correction for Women. Soon it will accommodate the Desmond and Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation and it has great potential to become a popular place for dialogue in its well-known historical precinct.
In his welcome address, Heritage Western Cape (HWC) CEO, Dr Mxolisi Dlamuka briefly explained the responsibility of the Council to mark significant buildings to receive the highest level of protection so that they can be available for future generations.
Councillor Stuart Diamond of the City of Cape Town proudly commended the investment to renew the Old Granary to the true status that it deserves. He called it a “project of unique transversal nature” and linked the occasion to the International Day for Monuments and Sites that are commemorated worldwide during this week.
“Every monument has its own story”, said HWC Chairperson Dr Antonia Malan. She gave a brief overview of sculptor Anton Anreith’s contribution to the impressive façade of the building. Malan said it has taken many years and much effort to unveil the plaque. “It reflects the challenges of working together to identify, protect and celebrate our history and heritage; to cut through possessiveness, suspicion and resistance; to find common cause and collaboration between citizens and government”, she said.
Minister Marais acknowledged the expert assistance of HWC and the facilitation of the City of Cape Town. “I am indeed grateful to each stakeholder as you have contributed to a community’s sense of place and unleashed its potential to yield information contributing to a wider understanding of the history of human occupation in the Western Cape,” she said. Minister Marais’ speech is available online for ease of reference.
HWC Grading and Interpretation Committee (IGIC) Chairperson Siphiwo Mavumengwana proudly congratulated the Western Cape government, City of Cape Town, HWC members and staff for making the unveiling of the plaque possible.
DCAS safeguards our diverse cultural heritage and encourages communities to take pride in it. Let’s adopt a better understanding of our shared inheritance, BETTER TOGETHER.