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Residents of ancient village petition for home preservation

Update: May, 22/2013 - 10:08
Secretary of the Ha Noi Party Committee Pham Quang Nghi told the residents yesterday that decisions relating to the management and preservation of Ha Noi heritage, including Duong Lam, were always made by and for the people.— Photo ktdt

HA NOI (VNS)— A Ha Noi leader has confirmed that city authorities are going to work out a suitable management mechanism ensuring that the local residents of Duong Lam Village receive support in preserving their ancient homes and in relocating if neccessary.

Secretary of the Ha Noi Party Committee Pham Quang Nghi told the residents yesterday that decisions relating to the management and preservation of Ha Noi heritage, including Duong Lam, were always made by and for the people.

His words were encouraging for the dozens of households who had been petitioning local authorities for help.

According to the head of the village management board, Pham Hung Son, ever since the village was recognised as a national relic in 2005, it has had to follow the heritage law. This prohibits repairs and enlargements to houses, which some residents have found restrictive.

Authorities have long pledged to build resettlement areas for local people, but these have still yet to appear, leaving some deteriorating 60sq.m buildings housing as many as four generations of a family.

Village resident Giang Tu Anh said now the younger generations were starting to grow up and start their own families. However, they were still living in the same limited houses.

"There should be a resettlement plan for us."

Son apologised for the failure of the management board to hold talks with residents and prevent this situation from happening earlier.

Dang Thi Bich Lien, deputy minister of Culture, Sports and Tourism, said the city lacked specific policies supporting this village.

Duong Lam, as one of five special ancient villages in the world, should be offered special protection, she added.

Vice Chairwoman of the municipal People's Committee Nguyen Thi Bich Ngoc said next month the city would approve two projects for the preservation of 580 seriously deteriorating pieces of heritage, including the houses of Duong Lam.

Luu Minh Tri, chairman of Thang Long Heritage Association, said the State should support the preservation costs for the more than 100 ancient houses in the village.

He added that there should be specific regulations outlining which houses could be extended and which rules they should follow.

Secretary Nghi said the city would soon find a suitable solution for the troubles facing this village because it was an area of "live heritage" which is unique and inseparable from the lives of local residents.

It should not be the responsibility for local people alone to protect the heritage, they required the support and guidance of the relevant authorities, he said.—VNS



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