Castle Jezeří, Horní Jiřetín, CZECH REPUBLIC
This vast Baroque castle is in an extensive state of deterioration. Intensive mining activity in direct vicinity of the castle has further aggravated structural issues over the mine’s 100 years of activity and has seriously altered the castle’s natural setting.
Formerly a seat of the Lobkowicz family, Castle Jezeří was an important cultural and social centre in the 18th and 19th centuries. Many acclaimed figures were hosted there and it was the scene of the first private performance of Ludwig van Beethoven’s third symphony in 1804. In more recent times, the castle suffered the effects of total neglect leading to the advanced decay it faces today.
The castle serves as one of the few surviving mementos of the many historic structures and natural landscape which were lost to the mining activity. The most nearby historical city centre, for example, was completely erased and the castle itself had almost suffered a similar fate.
The sheer size of the building means that a long-term and costly project is needed to revitalise it. The nomination of the castle was made by the Czech Association of Castle and Manor House Owners and is supported by its owner, the National Heritage Institute.