Prince of Wales

31st May 2013


Millionth Tree (Prince of Wales & CF)

On Friday 31st May 2013, deep in the hills between Archita and Roades, HRH the Prince of Wales, with Caroline Fernolend, planted the millionth tree for the Mihai Eminescu Trust. The work has been achieved through the support of ACCOR in their ‘Forest for Each School’ scheme. Four and a half thousand Romanian school children and their teachers have been involved in the 4 year partnership, the aim of which is to restore areas of deforestation in Transylvania at the same time raising awareness amongst the young of the importance of their forests and natural habitat. The project will continue and we look forward to celebrating the second millionth tree in the coming years.


May 16th 2011

Prince of Wales, Caroline Fernolend
HRH The Prince of Wales and Caroline Fernolend (Photo: Izabela Hartel/MET)

The Prince of Wales in Viscri to inaugurate the first organic wastewater treatment plant in Romania

Today the 16 May 2011, in the famous village Viscri, in Brasov County took place the inauguration of the first organic wastewater treatment plant in Romania. The treatment plant will contribute to a cleaner environment, a higher quality of life of locals and to the maintenance of the traditional image of the village.

The inauguration took place in the presence of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, the patron of the Mihai Eminescu Trust, who came to Viscri especially for this event. Prince Charles has unveiled an oak log on which is written “The first organic wastewater treatment plant in Romania inaugurated in the presence of HRH Prince of Wales, 16 May 2011”. The Prince talked to the villagers, walked on the streets of the village, admiring the well preserved houses by the local craftsmen. He ensured the MET team that they will always have his support in implementing revitalisation projects in the 25 villages in Transylvania, where the Trust is activating and whose president is Jessica Douglas-Home. The Prince of Wales stated during the inauguration ceremony “I hope, that this project will be for the benefit of the community many years from now on and other communities will follow your example”. Because of the increasing number of tourists who visit Viscri, starting with 400 tourists in the year 2000 to 12.000 tourists in 2010, the Viscri community together with the Mihai Eminescu Trust proposed to HRH the Prince of Wales to support the construction of the plant, which treats household wastewater through nature. It is an advantageous system, because no electric energy is needed and the purification of water is made by reeds and aerobic bacteria, in each of the 3 excavated lakes at the outskirts of the village. The village Viscri is listed in the UNESCO World Heritage.

The Mihai Eminescu Trust has started its activity in 1999 for the revitalisation of the villages in Transylvania, under the patronage of His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales. All for the support of local communities in the 25 villages of the 4 counties (Brasov, Mures, Sibiu and Covasna). Until now were developed more than 800 projects for training local craftsmen in traditional building skills, with the usage of traditional materials, restoration of houses and fortified churches, arranging public space, promotion and initiation of cultural tourism. The Trust is also promoting tourism activity in other villages like Malancrav, Floresti, Alma Vii, Crit and Biertan in order to enhance the special architectural value of this area.
The president of the Trust, Jessica Douglas-Home, has invited His Royal Highness for the first time in Romania in 1998, and the heir of the British throne has discovered and fell in love with the area, the architecture and the places, where human and nature still live in harmony. This project was co-financed by Rompetrol.

The project is implemented in partnership with the Commune of Bunesti and the Primary School Viscri

May 23rd 2009


HRH Viscri (a)
While on his visit to Viscri, HRH the Prince of Wales discusses with MET' directors Caroline Fernolend and Luminita Holban the Trust's project to create a new urban plan for Viscri, Mesendorf and other villages, which will help protect the area's endangered heritage. (Photo: Alexander Franz)

HRH Saschiz(1)
HRH the Prince of Wales with Caroline Fernolend and Luminita Holban in Saschiz.

The Visit as reported by Le Petit Journal (Bucharest)

Personne n’a été prévenu. La visite du Prince Charles en Roumanie, où il est arrivé jeudi après-midi, était à caractère entièrement privée. Charmé par la richesse touristique du pays, il a d’abord rencontré le président Traian Basescu et le Premier ministre Emil Boc, à Bucarest

Le Petit Journal (JM)
(Photo: JM)

Le Prince Charles a assuré au président et au Premier ministre être le meilleur avocat pour la promotion touristique de la Roumanie en Grande-Bretagne. Mais c’est surtout la Transylvanie et ses villages saxons qui intéressent son Altesse. Samedi, il a inauguré une petite coopérative destinée aux produits écologiques dans le village de Saschiz, près de Sighisoara (centre).

"La Transylvanie est un trésor agricole car on y trouve la combinaison d’une faune sauvage très riche avec des aliments naturels et de qualité produits par ses habitants. Je suis persuadé que cette région peut donner un exemple au monde entier en ce qui concerne la production biologique d’aliments saints", a-t-il déclaré. Il s’est ensuite dirigé vers Viscri (photo), petit village saxon, sans bitume ni canalisations, où il acheté une maison en 2000. La date de son retour en Angleterre n’a pas été précisée. Lundi 25 mai 2009.


Royal visit 2006

HRH The Prince of Wales paid a private visit to the Saxon Villages from 9th –11th May 2006,
accompanied by our Romanian and London directors Caroline Fernolend and Luminta Holban.
He spent two nights in Viscri and saw much of the Trust’s restoration work, noting the
extraordinary change in the village since his last visit four years ago.

HRH & Caroline
HRH with MET Director Caroline Fernolend

Walking with the Trust’s biologist Tibi Hartel in the hills near Viscri, the Prince stopped first
to watch progress on the construction of a wood-fired kiln on the edge of the village. From
earliest times, kilns similar in design used to exist in each community, providing handmade
bricks and tiles for the Saxon householders. The revival of this ancient rural technology –
overseen by British restoration expert Colin Richards – is funded by the Trust’s small business
scheme and will be managed by a Viscri family. Once the reliability of the product is established,
the kiln will supply a range of Transylvanian builders and architects. The Prince also saw the
Trust’s organic apple orchard in Malancrav Village, its juice-bottling factory and the adjacent
Apafi manor house which the Trust is restoring.
Throughout the visit the Prince’s understanding of the holistic regenerative power of the
Trust’s Whole Village Project communicated itself to all who met him and proved a great
inspiration to our outstanding Romanian team.


Royal visit 2004

In early May 2004, HRH The Prince of Wales visited the Maramures, using Barsana Monastery as a starting point. The Prince started his first day under the Gutin mountain near the three Armenian peaks to attend the opening of the spring Stana with the villae elders. During the two days, he visited Surdesti, Breb, Budesti and the church of Poenile Izei to see the extraordinary 17th century painted interior. While in Budesti, he visited a fulling mill and a distillery. The Prince had lunch in one of the MET's restored houses (below) during his two-day stay. The house is furnished with early Maramures furniture, icons and textiles collected by William Blacker over three years to save them from being sold abroad.

PoW Maramures 1 (2004)

PoW Maramures 2 (2004)

PoW Maramures 3 (2004)



© Mihai Eminescu Trust 2002