HERITAGE WEEK 2020 AT THE CASTLE OF GOOD HOPE 

 The 354-year old Castle of Good Hope, after months of forced closure and relative inaction, restarts its return to ‘normality’ with an array of exciting programs and activities.

“September is Heritage and Tourism Month. It thus fits that one of South Africa’s oldest and most imminent heritage-tourism institutions leads the way to mark this important period. Fittingly, the theme for Tourism Month is “Tourism: Building Peace! Fostering Knowledge while the theme for Heritage Month is “Celebrating South Africa’s living human treasures”. We are also very fortunate to use 22 September, World Rhino Day, (which is also the official beginning of Spring in the southern hemisphere), to re-open the Castle with the launch of a harrowing art exhibition coming to the Castle later this year” says Calvyn Gilfellan, CEO of the Castle Control Board.

Herewith some detail of an exciting Heritage Week at the Castle:

22 SEPTEMBER:
WORLD RHINO DAY

This Rhino art exhibition, confirmed to open in the first week of December 2020 officially, tells the story, through art, of an artist’s encounters with rhinos wounded by the greed and cruelty of humans.  Monique van Deventer regularly accompanies her husband, Dr Ryan van Deventer, who is a wildlife veterinarian, on field trips in KZN.  As an artist, Monique was shocked to see the suffering and sometimes death of these animals who are globally being poached to extinction.  Her powerful drawings and ceramic renditions of bones show five specific rhinos who have been affected by this cruelty.  Her sensitive “portraits” bring home the fact that these are sentient beings.

“The exhibition, curated by Carol Brown who is known for her exhibitions and research in art through activism and social concerns, is intended to bring this important issue to the forefront through Monique’s drawings, sculptures and photographs (see attachment). These will be shown in the 354-year-old historic stable in the Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town, from mid-December 2020.  This is a joint project with Iziko Museums and the Castle Control Board. The exhibition is intended to be a voice for the ‘voiceless’ and to increase awareness of humanities disregard for and destruction of the planet before it is too late”, says curator Carol Brown.

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23 SEPTEMBER:
SPECIAL PROVINCIAL PRAYER SERVICE FOR THE VICTIMS & SURVIVORS OF COVID-19

Also on Wednesday, is a joint Western Cape Government, City of Cape Town & South African Religious Forum COVID-19 prayer service that will be held in the old Chapel in the Castle.

“COVID-19 came as an unpleasant surprise and shock to all of us.  Many South Africans have lost their lives and livelihoods. This special thanksgiving service is meant to celebrate the lives of those who have succumbed to this deadly virus.  But it is also an opportunity to thank those brave women, men and children who risk their lives in the frontline fighting this scourge. As we move into the phase of re-opening, rebuilding and picking up the pieces, we need to reflect, and thank our Creator for his mercy to those who have made it” says Bishop Templeton, national chairperson of the South African Religious Forum.

The service is scheduled to start at 10h00.

24 SEPTEMBER:
NATIONAL HERITAGE DAY & LAUNCH OF HISTORIC MUSLIM MUSEUM AT THE CASTLE

On Thursday, 24 September, access to the Castle will be FREE OF CHARGE to all South Africans and tourists.

One of the highlights of the day is the launch of a first-ever South African Muslim Heritage Museum (MHMSA).

“Over recent months, members from our community has requested a much-needed Museum for Muslims and their contributions to the South African community at large.  People in Heritage fields had ongoing meetings and eventually registered an NGO and established the MHMSA, Muslim Heritage Museum of South Africa.  It is a first of its nature in South Africa.  Treasure Yourself Magazine came on board as it is often referred to as a ‘moving Museum’ says Fadia Mohammed, spokesperson for this historic initiative.

The Board is inviting all citizens and tourists to join us in our first public event since the March COVID-19 lockdown.  Although it is a fun-day, people must take responsibility for their health and safety by following all the COVID-19 protocols.

 

Media Enquiries: Calvyn Gilfellan, +27 (0)82 3346098 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Rhino Exhibition Enquiries: Ms Carol Brown (Curator) on 0837781192.

COVID-19 Prayer Service: Bishop Templeton on 0611782262.

SA Muslim Museum: Ms Fadia Mohammed on 0734781728.

General Enquiries: Mr Sonwabile Maxebengula. +27 (0)73 751 9433 Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For more information on individual events please call: +27 (0)21 787 1260.

South African Museums Association

Recommended Norms & Standards
For The Operating of Museums
During COVID-19

08 July 2020

- Click here to view the document -

CEO Welcome Letter - August 2018

17th August 2018.

 

 

Welcome to the Castle of Good Hope, South Africa’s oldest surviving building still in use today…

Every morning when I arrive at work, I have to remind myself what a huge privilege and honour it is to open the doors of the oldest, operating office in the country.

There is not a single day that is the same as the one before. Sometimes my early morning catching up on emails session is interrupted with the wild exciting laughter of hundreds of school kids running past my open window. On other days the inquisitive questions in heavy foreign accents and on others just deafening silence – as if the Castle is an island far away from the hustle and bustle the City of Cape Town. On other days, it is the sounds from the resident Egyptian geese competing with those of the not-so-resident starlings creating a cacophony of life and an ambience nowhere to be found.

Whether you come here for to appreciate the architectural a kindergarten parties, military parades, memorial services, Ministerial functions, weddings, Khoi full-moon ceremonies, Hollywood feature film-shoots, Christmas parties, birthday celebrations, corporate dinners/lunches/breakfasts, films festivals, conferences, Nama language classes, workshops for abused women and children, skills exchange programmes, entrepreneurial initiatives, community building workshops, traditional indigenous seminars, award evenings, dance lessons, cooking competitions, markets, birthday parties, Voortrekker conventions, youth camps, commercial and non-commercial TV-shoots, art classes and the likes all find themselves merrily happening between the castle’s five bastion walls!

Built between 1666 and 1679, the Castle is the oldest surviving building in South Africa and has been the center of civilian, political and military life at the Cape from approximately 1679.

Simplistically put the Castle fulfilled two historical roles – to keep the VOC’s officials safe inside but also to keep the indigenous people out. That is fast changing. Under the motto “bringing the castle to the people and taking the castle to the people” every South African and world citizen are welcomed to appreciate and celebrate in their own unique way what is offered by this 350 year old time-capsule.

I often scan through what the tourist reviews say about the Castle: some glorify the magnificent combination of Dutch an English architecture that has defied almost 350 year of Cape weather; others are attracted by the macabre sites of torture, horror and incarnation. In addition, yes, there are the ones attracted by ghosts!

However, for me it is the link the Castle provides with the past the present and the future – making it a true simple of and Good Hope.

Welcome and take your time even if your tour guide is trying to spur you on to your next appointment.

Calvyn Gilfellan,
Chief Executive
Castle Control Board

 

SA Tourism Services Association
Frequently Asked Questions For Tourists Travelling To SA [PDF 2MB]
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Tourism Industry Standard Protocols
For COVID-19 Operations

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Updated Lockdown
Level 2 Regulations
25 August 2020

 

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Answering your questions on filming procedures during COVID-19 lock down.

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An infographic with tips and emergency contact numbers.

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Four steps for visitor safety.

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Latest Events

To see the latest upcoming events at the Castle of Good Hope, click on a day or the month title to display the event(s).

October 2020
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Key Ceremony

TIMES
10:00|12:00 

This showcases the unlocking of the Van der Stel entrance of the Castle of Good Hope by the ceremonial guards of the castle. It is a past practice that is still practised today.

Canon Firing

TIMES
10:00|11:00|12:00 

The firing of the signal cannon was used to indicate that a ship had been sighted at sea and to relay the message to people inside the fort. You can view the firing of an old cannon, performed by the Cannon Association of South Africa.

Guided Tours

TIMES
11:00|12:00|14:00|15:00|16:00 

Unearth the hidden history of the Castle with a guided tour led by an experienced guide. Tours operate seven days a week.

 

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