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Flanders issues 100th lift heritage certificate

The Flemish government has issued its 100th certificate for the preservation of an historic lift.  Heritage Minister Diependaele (nationalist), whose services drew up the certificate, says it is good news for the residents of “La Pépinière”, a block of flats on the Koningin Elisabethlei in Antwerp.  It means they will be able to have works carried out to ensure the safety of the lift while preserving its historic value.

Owners with properties with lifts are bound to comply with safety regulations.  Special recommendations apply to historical lifts.  To carry out safety work and preserve the building’s heritage a special certificate is needed.  “It’s perfectly possible to preserve heritage and carry out safety work in a lift” says Minister Diependaele.  “Lifts are the only type of heritage that isn’t protected but the certificates prove the lifts possess heritage value.

“La Pépinière”dates from 1929.  “The lift is a jewel” says heritage consultant Frank Becuwe.  There are two lifts.  The service lift is more modest, but the main lift is highly decorated.  There’s fantastic craftsmanship in the wrought ironwork and the joinery.  The lift has concertina doors and the cage possesses a splendid control panel.  The whole is finished off with tropical gold”.

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