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.

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08 July 2020

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Castle Of Good Hope Commemoration A Chance To Rewrite Colonial History - Zuma

9th December 2018.

 

 

Cape Town – The 350th commemoration of the founding of the “bastion of colonialism”, the Castle of Good Hope, is an opportunity to rewrite colonial history, President Jacob Zuma said on Friday.

“(It is) a standing reminder and sanctuary for the defence of a brutal system that robbed the majority of South Africans of their dignity, social identity, land and other benefits of their country’s economic potential,” Defence Minister Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula read from a speech Zuma was meant to have delivered.

He was unable to because of a state visit by Zambia’s president.

The castle’s history could be rewritten in a manner that was inclusive and promoted healing and nation building. Its construction marked the beginning of colonial injustice, and racial oppression.

When the governor of the Cape colony, Zacharia Wagenaar, laid the foundation stone in August 1666, the intention was to build a solid defence against two enemies: The rival European powers and the indigenous population who fought to retain their land and freedom.

READ: Spirit of Krotoa returned to the Castle of Good Hope

“The castle became the political, judicial, legislative, penal and social nerve centre of the fledgling colonial administration,” Mapisa-Nqakula said.

“It is against this background that the commemoration of the 350 year’s existence of the castle offers us a unique opportunity to revisit, reinterpret and re-write our complex, brutal colonial and apartheid history in a manner that is fully inclusive, restorative, respectful and educational.”

On the last day of the 350th commemoration, three kings and “gallant heroes and heroines who took on the might of colonial armies” were honoured with statues.

These included King Cetshwayo kaSenzangakhona of the amaZulu, King Langalibalele kaMthimkulu of the amaHlubi, King Sekhukhune of the BaPedi, and Gorochougua clan freedom fighter and Khoe (khoisan) leader Doman.

This was the beginning of a commitment to honour all those who fought against colonial conquest and inspired future generations of freedom fighters.

‘Breaking the curse’

A Centre for Memory, Healing and Learning was opened at the castle on Friday. The centre was flanked by a torture chamber and jail cells where kings and chiefs were incarcerated.

The intention of the centre, sponsored by the military veterans department, was to break the curse of “oppression, persecution and ignorance”, Mapisa-Nqakula said.

Since the castle served as a haven for colonial rulers and was a strong proponent of slavery, it was perhaps no accident that the largest contradiction and conflict around identity and race was to be found in the Western Cape, and in particular Cape Town.

“We must use this opportunity to change the mind-set of the castle being glorified as a bastion of colonialism.”

The castle had been declared a national heritage site and an application would soon be made to upgrade it to a world heritage site.

The celebrations on Friday included marching bands, praise singers, and a national salute.

News24 

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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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