Landscape of Grand Pré Named UNESCO World Heritage Site‏

Kentville, Nova Scotia, June 30, 2012 – The Landscape of Grand Pré has been added to the prestigious United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) World Heritage List. The decision was announced at the 36th session of the World Heritage Committee in Saint Petersburg, Russia. With this inscription, the Landscape of Grand Pré joins the most iconic sites on Earth including the Egyptian pyramids, the Great Wall of China, and the Great Barrier Reef as part of the heritage of humanity as a whole.

Today’s announcement was welcomed by various community groups and government officials who worked collaboratively with key stakeholders for more than five years to attain international recognition for the 16-square-kilometre site. It is comprised of marshlands, the Grand-Pré National Historic Site, and part of the communities of Grand Pré and Hortonville. The Landscape of Grand Pré World Heritage Site is considered the symbolic homeland of the Acadian people and a world-class example of agricultural achievement in a location with the highest tides in the world.

“Today’s announcement is a tremendous symbolic achievement for the Acadian people whose ancestors persevered through upheaval and peaceful reconciliation leading up to this historic day,” commented Nomination Grand Pré Co-chair, Dr. Gerald Boudreau. “It confirms what we have always known,” said his counterpart, local resident and Nomination Grand Pre Co-chair, Peter Herbin. “The Landscape of Grand Pre is an international treasure of outstanding universal value.”

The UNESCO World Heritage Convention aims to encourage countries to protect their cultural and natural heritage and identify those properties that have outstanding universal value to inscribe them on the World Heritage List.

“Grand Pre has long held a special place in the hearts of Acadian and farming communities in this province,” said Education Minister Ramona Jennex on behalf of Communities, Culture and Heritage Minister Leonard Preyra. “Now thanks to this prestigious recognition and the enhanced protection it provides, all Nova Scotians and people from around the world will be able to appreciate and enjoy the area’s rich culture and heritage for years to come.”

“This is an incredible source of pride for the people of Kings County and for all Nova Scotians,” said Warden Diana Brothers, Municipality of the County of Kings. “The designation will enhance Kings County’s reputation as a destination with a remarkable array of cultural and natural attractions,” added Stephen Kerr, Executive Director of the Kings Regional Development Agency

The Landscape of Grand Pré is Canada’s sixteenth World Heritage Site and Nova Scotia’s third including Old Town Lunenburg (1995) and The Joggins Fossil Cliffs (2008).

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