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EHTTA Network's Celebration@Sources

World Water Day on March 22nd each year is the day the world focuses on water, led by the United Nations, and in the EHTTA network, this is a very special day too! World Water Day is the day on which members focus on the sources of water which make each of their towns so special, and which are the reasons the towns continue to exist and to draw visitors from all over the world to take the waters for leisure and health. This year's theme of "Water is Work" is particularly important to all those who work in the spa town sector, in and around water sources which are used for bathing and drinking for medicinal purposes and general wellbeing.

EHTTA, which also manages the Council of Europe's Cultural Route of Historic Thermal Towns has developed "Celebration@Sources" to highlight the unique sources of water in each of its member towns, and to give those who manage the sources the opportunity to give access to the public in a way which is not generally available. Members are celebrating with open days, walks, talks, concerts, competitions across Europe, with towns large and small taking the opportunity to celebrate the water sources which gave rise to their existence and long history as places of tourism, heritage and wellness. Some of the EHTTA members taking part in Celebration@Sources include Acqui Terme (IT), Bath (UK), Baden-Baden (GE), Budapest (HU), Loutra Pozar (GR), Ourense (SP), Salsomaggiore Terme (IT), and the Hellenic Association of Municipalities with Thermal Springs (GR).

President of EHTTA, and the Mayor Montecatini Terme, a famous drinking water spa in Italy, Mr Giuseppe Bellandi said: "Our Association has grown from small beginnings in 2009 when just six towns sat around the table, to one of increasing importance with nearly 40 members in 13 countries. We represent towns that all have an important heritage, often dating back to Roman times and beyond, and which are important for the growing tourism sectors of health and wellness. "Celebration@Sources" is our way of telling the world about how important our spa towns are, and a welcome opportunity to salute all those who work with water to ensure the health of generations to come. We are fortunate to have a dedicated and active membership which is working to ensure that the future health and prosperity of these important historic thermal spa towns is assured as much as the health and wellbeing of their visitors!"

For further information please contact:
Catherine Lloyd +44 (0)7875 275059

For information about EHTTA:

Visit the EHTTA website: www.ehtta.eu
UN World Water Day: www.unwater.org/worldwaterday
Join us on the Facebook page: www.facebook.com/ThermalTravels
Follow us on Twitter: @ehttaThermal
Instagram: European_thermal_watertowns

All the Celebration@Sources activities are posted on the Thermal Travels Facebook Page. #celebrationsources

  1. Bath's historic Cross Bath at Thermae Bath Spa will be open to the public for free bathing from 10am - 5pm
  2. Ourense, in Spain has a programme of arts, photo stories, and storytelling to celebrate its sources
  3. Acqui Terme is hosting a special concert, and a schools event, as well as a conference on water, acqueducts nd thermae in Roman times
  4. Budapest has guided tours, cultural programmes, discounts on treatments and much more

Notes to Editors:

EHTTA Association (European Historic Thermal Towns Association)

  1. EHTTA is responsible for the European Route of Historic Thermal Towns. All members have a rich historic and cultural heritage and use their thermal mineral waters for health and well-being. EHTTA's mission is to enhance, protect, and promote thermalism in Europe.
  2. The EHTTA was created in 2009 in Brussels, and soon after was designated by the Council of Europe as a Cultural Route, one of just 33 across Europe.
  3. Over 30 members include Vichy - France, Baden Baden - Germany, Bath - United Kingdom, Ourense - Spain, Montecatini Terme - Italy but also Budapest - Hungary, Daruvar - Croatia, Chaves - Portugal and Loutra Pozar - Greece) in 13 European countries. All members must satisfy these criteria:
    • Be within a country which is a member of the Council of Europe
    • Have a history of use as a thermal spa town dating back to the 19th Century or before
    • Have an active water source used for bathing or drinking as part of a thermal spa or wellbeing centre
    • Have a thermal architectural heritage dating back at least to the 19th century with one or more buildings related to hydrotherapy and classified historic monuments; or for historic spa towns within the Council of Europe which do not satisfy this point, the city must prove that it has a significant history of thermalism.
    • Have a tradition of cultural events, and the infrastructure to support this, such as theatres, concert halls, casino, bandstand
    • Offer high quality accommodation with specific facilities dedicated to thermal activity
  4. The aims of this European network are to obtain recognition for the innovative and cultural qualities of European spa towns at the European Union level, in order to develop a new plan for the tourist sector by encouraging cross-border tourism in the framework of "Destination Europe". EHTTA encourages the economic development of spa towns and the safeguarding of their cultural and built heritage through exchanges of experience and good practices at European level.

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