Fishing boats destruction

Throughout the 20th century, fishing boats have remained the main products of boatyards. In the late 1980s, following the implementation of the European Community regulation on the reduction of the fishing fleet, unique examples of the Greek boatbuilding tradition were destroyed, causing a major blow to the maritime cultural heritage.

The excessive subsidy for the destruction of the old fishing vessels in the context of the renewal of the fishing fleet, which continued from all subsequent European Regulations in the programming periods that followed until today, as well as the indifference in demanding the traditional fishing vessels’ preservation, have led thousands of wooden fishing boats to destruction.

Wooden boats are declining rapidly in number and are now outnumbered by mass-produced boats that are mainly made by fiberglass. This situation has multiple negative effects on culture and the environment. The review of this measure, with the aim of halting its negative effects, would be an issue for the next programming periods.

The connection of the effort for the modernization of fisheries and the protection of fish stocks with the destruction of the creations of the Greek boatbuilding tradition is unfortunate, and counterproductive in all senses, and it must be institutionally ensured that it will never happen again. Other ways must be found to certify the exit of fishermen from the profession in order to stop the destruction of the boatbuilding tradition’s creations along with the Ministry of Culture, which is trying to support and has registered this tradition in the National Inventory of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Greece.

Katerina Papadopoulou, Nefeli Varouchaki, ELLINIKI ETAIRIA Society for the Environment and Cultural Heritage

©  2021 Friends of the Museum of Aegean Boatbuilding and Maritime Crafts
©  2021 Friends of the Museum of Aegean Boatbuilding and Maritime Crafts