Historical Dutch fair on UNESCO list?

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Local politicians in the southern Dutch city of Tilburg want its traditional Dutch city fair, which kicks off today, to be put on a UNESCO heritage list.

For the ten days leading up to and including the last Sunday in July, the southern Dutch city of Tilburg goes mad. This year’s Tilburg Fun Fair starts today and boasts 233 “exciting and daredevil attractions” located on a 4.5-kilometre stretch of the city centre.

It is the largest fair to take place in the Benelux countries and, with over one million visitors each year, the second largest event in the Netherlands. The first mention of a ‘Tilburg Fair’ was made in 1570, but the tradition is reckoned to be even older than that.

Dutch culture Tilburg Council wants the fair to be put on UNESCO’s Intangible Cultural Heritage List when the Netherlands ratifies the relevant UN convention later this year. ”The fair is essential Dutch culture,” argues Councillor Joost Möller. “Almost nowhere else in the country has it such a central place in the history of a city as in Tilburg.”

The Netherlands has already signed the UN agency’s World Heritage Sites convention. Amsterdam’s canal rings and the windmills at Kinderdijk are both UNESCO world heritage sites.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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