European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018

European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018


2018 will be the European Year of Cultural Heritage, a year of events, activities and celebrations all around Europe to get people interested and involved in cultural heritage.

2018 will be the European Year of Cultural Heritage, a year of events, activities and celebrations all around Europe to get people interested and involved in cultural heritage.

Cultural heritage is the fabric of our lives and societies. It surrounds us in the buildings of our towns and cities; our landscapes and archaeological sites.

It is not only made up of literature, art and objects but also by the crafts we learn, the stories we tell, the food we eat, the songs we sing and the films we watch. Cultural heritage brings communities together and builds shared understandings of the places we live in. Thanks to technology and the internet, it is now more accessible than ever.

Aim of the year

The aim of the European Year of Cultural Heritage is to encourage the sharing and appreciation of Europe's cultural heritage, to raise awareness of our common history and values and to reinforce a sense of belonging in a common European space. 

European cultural heritage allows us to understand the past and to look to our future. This is reflected in the slogan for the year.  "Our Heritage: Where the Past Meets the Future". 

By highlighting cultural heritage in 2018, we will emphasise:

  • Cultural heritage's value to society
  • its contribution to the economy
  • its importance for our relations with the rest of the world- cultural diplomacy
  • the importance of safeguarding it for the enjoyment of future generations. 

The Themes


Shared heritage: bringing Europe's cultural heritage, history and shared values closer to people
Heritage at school: discovering Europe's treasures at an early age
Youth for heritage: engaging the younger generation


Heritage in transition: re-imaging industrial, religious or military sites
Tourism and heritage: responsible and sustainable tourism around cultural heritage


Cherishing heritage: developing standards for quality interventions in the historic environment and at heritage sites
Heritage at risk: fighting the illicit trade in cultural goods and managing risks at heritage sites


Heritage-related skills: enhancing education and training for the traditional and the new professions
Heritage for all: fostering participation and social innovation
Science for heritage: using research, innovation, science and technology for the better conservation and presentation of heritage. 

European Year of Cultural Heritage in Ireland

The Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has established a National Steering Committee to oversee the implementation of the European Year of Cultural Heritage in Ireland.  Each of the cultural institutions are represented along with the Irish Research Council, ICOMOS Ireland, CCMA, Creative Europe Culture Desk, Creative Ireland and the Office of Public Works (OPW).

The Minister of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht has appointed the Heritage Council to co-ordinate activities nationwide.  We will shortly issue a call to identify potential ideas and initiatives from organisations and groups. This will formulate the programme for the year which will be launched towards the end of the year in Dublin. The European launch will take place in Milan at the Culture Forum 7-8 December.

Further details at

Tell Us Your Ideas/ Apply for the EYCH label for your initiative

We're asking organisations and individuals to identify initiatives, existing and new, planned for 2018 which meet the objectives of European Year of Cultural Heritage (EYCH).

Types of events considered includes the following

  • Cultural event or performance
  • Media event, launch event 
  • Exhibition, show 
  • Information, education or awareness-raising campaign
  • Festivals, including film festivals
  • Conference, symposium, forum, debate
  • Study, survey
  • Training/ workshops
  • Research activities
  • Visit, exchange
  • Digital projects

Events/Activities must meet the objectives of the European Year of Cultural Heritage as outlined in EU Decision 2017/864:

(a) initiatives which promote debate and raise awareness of the importance and value of cultural heritage and to facilitate engagement with citizens and stakeholders;
(b) information, exhibitions, education and awareness-raising campaigns; 
(c) the sharing of experience and best practices among representatives of national, regional and local administrations and other organisations, in addition to the dissemination of information; 
(d) Undertaking studies and research and innovation activities, in addition to the dissemination of their results on a European or national scale; and/or;
(e) the promotion of projects and networks connected to the European Year, including via media and social networks.

The EYCH label (comprising of a logo, slogan and hashtag #EuropeForCulture) will be available for activities, events and projects taking place between 7 December 2017 and 31 December 2018 which contribute to achieving one or more of the objectives of the European Year of Cultural Heritage. 

Note: permission must be granted by the Heritage Council as National Co-ordinator to use the European Year of Cultural Heritage label/brand.

Tell us about your event/Apply to use the European Year of Cultural Heritage label/brand 

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Mayglass Farmstead

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Tidy Towns Heritage Award

Tidy Towns Heritage Award

The TidyTowns Heritage Award has been sponsored by the Heritage Council to encourage a greater awareness of the value of our heritage to our quality of life and to sustainable economic development.

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National Heritage Week

Towards the end of August each year we celebrate Ireland’s natural, built and cultural heritage with an inspiring, informative and enjoyable programme of events.