The constant, step-by-step restoration of the Neamțu Manor in Olari has been started since 2018. Currently undergoing restoration, the manor is an important landmark for the local community. Started in 2021 together with the UiPath Foundation the project “Experimental Centre for Studies and Education at the Neamțu Manor in Olari” is dedicated to this place. As in all other interventions carried out by Pro Patrimonio, the restoration, the construction site and all efforts to activate, educate and involve the local community are open, public processes.
After completig the facades’ restoration in 2022, this year we are focusing our efforts to carry out repairs and restoration of the finishes in the interior spaces of the manor floor.
Thus, we have started working on the ceilings, where the manor largely kept only the roof structure beams. There are a few exceptions: in the room facing the main façade, a large part of the vaulted ceiling has been preserved, and in the loggia on the north-west side, fragments of the wooden panelling covering the ceiling have been preserved.
The threadlike wooden battens substructure of the ceiling plaster has now been rebuilt and the first layer of mineral wool is being laid in the attic. We are using modern materials (basaltic mineral wool, generously sponsored by Rockwool România, thank you!) in order not to add extra weight to the existing structure and to increase the interior comfort of the floor, limiting heat loss during cold periods, when we will heat and use the spaces.
At the same time, we are also adding the electrical installation for lighting, sockets and switches, in compliance with all the technical safety regulations.
We have also started to install the canopy at the secondary entrance. This was dismantled last year to complete repairs to the facade plaster. The team of carpenters led by Mr. Florin Ganea — who has helped us for years with specialized work on the Wooden Church from Urși — cleaned the wooden pieces and filled in what was missing, in order to rebuild the entire canopy.
At the „Experimental Centre for Studies and Education at the Neamțu Manor in Olari” we have been testing over the past year soil stability solutions for dry, parched land types. This agricultural experiment for the garden at the Neamțu Manor in Olari showed that it is necessary to work on smaller segments to create areas of favourable microclimate. These can then be slowly extended over the whole field.
For this purpose, for the northern windbreak, we continued planting branches of wicker (Salix Viminalis), a plant that exists in the vineyard areas where it is used to tie the vine ropes. The rest of the land is still used for small production crops ( sunflower and corn – local varieties).
The manor’s caretakers weed the crops by hand. We would like to be able to purchase a professional tiller to make the work and the labour more efficient. The caretakers are employed from the local community and also work to help the teams of craftsmen restoring the manor.
The room we call the “chapel” is beginning to take shape thanks to the architectural details. The restoration craftsmen together with the caretakers of the manor have repaired the ceiling, installed the electrical fittings and just finished the plastering, so the space suddenly looks much more airy.
At the beginning of autumn, the sunflowers and the corn grown on the land around the manor were harvested. We sell this grain for firewood and other expenses for future plantations. With the help of a private donor, we were able to buy a chainsaw, which will be of great help in the following agricultural work.
We thank him with gratitude. Small steps that create a whole.
Between August 30 and September 3, 2022, the Neamţu Manor in Olari became the host of the Pro Patrimonio Foundation’s Heritage Caravan for the 7th consecutive year. “The story of my village” was the theme of educational workshops.
Approximately 20 children from the local community benefited from an intense program of practical and creative workshops coordinated by the theme of discovering their own village and the cultural and natural context it has.
We thanks for the support to UiPath Foundation.
We took advantage of a still warm autumn at Neamţu Manor. We are installing the insulation donated by ROCKWOOL under the floor above the basement so that we can heat the upstairs room in the future. Soon we will be able to host the children’s workshops in the mansion as well, not just outside, on summer days.
Foto: Daniela Gheorghiu
Foto: Raluca Munteanu
At the end of a new year of extensive construction, the Neamţu Manor presents itself brightly in the meadow of Olteţ river. It is an example of strong hope for other historical monuments that can be saved and given a new life.
We thank our individual donors who choose to support this lasting project as well as the companies that constantly support us.
Foto: Ovidiu Serghe