Received: IgB motto: "We love old houses"

They still exist in different places and landscapes: old uninhabited farms, barns and stables. Sometimes invaded and decomposed, they end an indeterminate life. These objects, as well as ancient windmills and water towers, bear the traces and knowledge of many generations of residents and artisans. In addition, they are uniquely shaped by the cultural landscape of their region and impress with their charm, soul and uniqueness.

Historic heritage preserved

In many cases, old and interesting collections – houses and outbuildings that characterize the landscape in an undeniable way – must give way to new buildings. The Interessengemeinschaft Bauernhaus, founded in Kirchseelte some 40 years ago, observes with great concern the speed with which this historical cultural heritage is about to disappear. For life in the countryside to continue, IgB calls, among other things, to promote new living spaces in traditional rural environments, to preserve and renovate old buildings. In short, the motto is reconstruction rather than new construction and housing policy and the harmonization of sustainable development.

"The goal of IgB is to obtain sets and home landscapes worthwhile in rural areas and to renovate them with traditional building materials and techniques": Hermann Rust wishes to interest the builders interested in these historic buildings to the survival of such homes. Membership in IgB is open to anyone wishing to work for rural construction in rural areas.

House for generations

In an interview, the Westersteder architect explains how IgB can be helpful in answering questions about old local buildings.

Why do you commit to preserving the special methods of rural construction?

Hermann Rust: There are several reasons. These historic buildings gave a home to generations. It's a culture that has lasted for centuries. I was born in East Friesland in an old gulf house. In 1976 already, my wife and I had bought our first farm Ammerländer. The renovation and transformation were entirely carried out with the help of our own contribution.

How can IgB help individuals find such historical treasures?

Hermann Rust: Our members can freely set up a targeted search ad on the website and search for a special item. For example, in Ammerland, many objects deserve to be preserved.

What to look for in old farms and other historical buildings classified as historical monuments?

Hermann Rust: Here, the cooperation with the monument service is very useful and beneficial. The monument service checks the structure of the building. By carefully combining ancient and modern needs with current needs, we can preserve the beauty and sustainability of future generations.

The slags of old buildings, built only with lime or clay, and terracotta tiles retain indefinitely and give a very special charm to the new old buildings. The beam construction is restored and installed.

Are some crafting techniques necessary for restoration?

Hermann Rust: Our craft companies, for example, have carpenters and masons who specialize in these areas.

What uses are available for barns, windmills and water towers?

Hermann Rust: The barns and Gulf houses can be restored and can hold up to five apartments. This is also possible on the outside. The state wants this expansion to protect such homes. Due to the higher number of apartments, the costs can be implemented. The restoration of windmills and water towers is ideal for idealists.

On Sunday 8 September, the open monument day, coordinated by the German Foundation for the Protection of Monuments, is held throughout Germany. The Interessengemeinschaft Bauernhaus also participates in this day with many actions and open doors. Heritage Day offers a rare opportunity to get to know otherwise inaccessible private buildings. Take a trip back in time with the Bauernhaus Interessengemeinschaft and discover exciting artifacts, interesting guided tours and an unsuspected glimpse into history. Perhaps you can also take good advice for your own renovation project.

The IgB Association lives in a network covering about 150 foreign and foreign points of contact and is locally responsible for members and other interested parties in matters relating to houses, their repair and their rescue. True to the motto "We love old houses", the more than 6,000 members see the preservation of historic buildings not only a task, but a matter of heart. The IgB can help interested people with good examples, experience and advice with their network. Hermann Rust, Burgstraße 21, 26655 Westerstede, is the contact person for the Amerland.
To join under the phone:
04488 4854 or by post

Other contacts in Aldenburgerland are in Wesermarsch, Oldenburg, Friesland and Wildeshausen.

The award recognizes special achievements in preserving historic buildings in the countryside. With award-winning examples, IgB wants to encourage the proper treatment of historic buildings. In 2019, associations, initiatives and other groups that have saved the community a testimony of rural architecture are expected to apply for the Julius H. W. Kraft Award.

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