Program for Investigation and Conservation of the Alexandrovo Tomb

In September 2020 the Balkan Heritage Foundation signed a partnership agreement for a 5-year program for study, preservation and communication of the Alexandrovo tomb with the National Archaeological Institute with Museum at the Bulgarian Academy of Science, Haskovo Regional Museum of History and Sofia University’s Faculty of History. The joint program envisions research, conservation and restoration, publishing, advocacy and communication activities in benefit of the site and its environment.

Despite its significance, the Tomb is more than ever exposed to various risks threatening the integrity and preservation of its most precious element: the murals due to ignorance and mismanagement, esp. during the last decade. In 2019 the Balkan Heritage Foundation along with the Bulgarian Ministry of Culture supported the efforts of NAIM-BAS for their documentation through a series of non-destructive methods for photographic documentation. The initial phase of collaboration between the BHF and NAIM-BAS  within the documentation project called “Thracian Tomb of Alexandrovo, Bulgaria – Phase 1” was followed in 2020 – 2021 by another joint project funded by the J. M. Kaplan Fund called the “Thracian Tomb of Alexandrovo, Bulgaria – Phase 2”. The latter project is focused on the conservation of the wall painting fragments detached from the monument’s walls, dissemination of information about Thracian tombs around Alexandrovo through a georeferenced database and the conference.

The quadrilateral alliance envisions to:

1)    Implement various archaeological and interdisciplinary investigations (such as geophysical and geological surveys) of the site and its surrounding area in order to gather scientific data for its context

2)    Document the tomb, the burial mound and its surroundings

3)    Support the conservation and restoration of wall painting fragments discovered in the tomb and currently kept in the museum storage

4)    Create a virtual model of the tomb’s wall paintings

5)    Support the preparation and realization of a project for the protection of the tomb and the burial mound as well as the wall paintings in situ

7)    Publish any research results related to the site and a monograph

8)   Participate in the designing of a master conservation plan and management plan for the site

9)   Support the candidacy of the tomb for UNESCO World Heritage Site

10) Organize conferences, round tables, exhibitions, information and advocacy campaigns related to the future of the site.