September 30, 2010
For many years, certain elements of the British Press liked to suggest that Greece was incapable of looking after the Parthenon Marbles if they ever were returned. During the construction of the New Acropolis Museum, questions were again raised about every possible aspect of the way the museum was being built & the way the artefacts would be displayed. The New Acropolis Museum does however have many parallels with the proposed Stone henge Visitor Centre.
Both Stone Henge & The Athenian Acropolis are iconic examples of their historical epochs. For a long time, both sites had planned on building new visitor centres, but the projects were plagued by delays lasting decades that stopped any meaningful progress. Now however, Greece has a brand new Acropolis Museum, while visitors to Stone Henge still have to make do with distinctly lacklustre visitor facilities that mainly consist of a tunnel around the road containing a gift shop & some information boards. The British Museum makes much of how the Parthenon Marbles can be seen in their institution for free, but on the other hand, Stone Henge (with or without visitor centre) charges an admission centre except to National Trust or English Heritage members.
New York Times
The Age of Austerity Challenges Stonehenge
By JULIA WERDIGIER
Published: August 11, 2010
STONEHENGE, England — The prehistoric monument of Stonehenge stands tall in the British countryside as one of the last remnants of the Neolithic Age. Recently it has also become the latest symbol of another era: the new fiscal austerity.
Renovations — including a plan to replace the site’s run-down visitors center with one almost five times bigger and to close a busy road that runs along the 5,000-year-old monument — had to be mothballed in June. The British government had suddenly withdrawn £10 million, or $16 million, in financing for the project as part of a budget squeeze.
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