Following the submission of a petition and some formal documentation to UNESCO in September 2017, the historic Czech national stud, the home of the Kladruber breed, has been listed as a World Heritage Site.
UNESCO has officially approved the request on Wednesday, thereby adding the farm to the list as expected and expressed by the stud farm director Jiri Machek, who commented to AFP, “It is the only landscape preserved and used for its original purpose” of horse breeding.
According to Horse Breed Website, “the origin of the Kladruber Horse is shrouded in darkness, since, quite strangely, the 200 years of breeding records of the Kladruber Horse were destroyed by a fire that set out in 1759. The only known information about the breed is that these equines initially worked as carriage horses during the grand ceremonies of the imperial court of Vienna.”
Nonetheless, Machek added that “In 1579 it was promoted to the imperial stud farm to breed horses for Rudolph II’s imperial court.”
UNESCO made a statement describing the farm as “one of Europe’s leading horse-breeding institutions, developed at a time when horses played vital roles in transport, agriculture, military support, and aristocratic representation.
“The site consists of flat, sandy soils and includes fields, fenced pastures, a forested area and buildings, all designed with the main objective of breeding and training Kladruber horses, a type of draft (work) horse used in ceremonies by the Habsburg imperial court.”
The area is said to be 14th Czech site on the UNESCO World Heritage list, alongside the centres of Prague and the picturesque southern city of Cesky Krumlov, as well as the northwestern mining Krusnohori region also listed last week. Covering an area of 1,310 hectares (3,200 acres), the Kladruby farm attracted 65,000 visitors last year.
Macheck is expecting more visitors to storm the place following the decision made by the UNESCO.