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Heritage Sites talk:Further Cultural Sites

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Bistrampolis manor (Panevėžio r.)

History of the manor Bistramai family used the coat of arms Tarnawa. The pioneer of Lithuanian branch of Bistramai family was Jonas Kazimieras Bistramas, the landlord of King Vladislav IV, who has received 26 Wallaches of land in the middle of Lithuania from the lord for his merits and has moved to live there from Kursas. One of his two sons returned back to live in Kursas while the other – Jonas Evaldas married to polish girl Ana Svencicka, stayed to live in Lithuania and has acquired two folwarks in the wide valley of Juoda in the juncture of seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Later, when the manors were split by his descendants, one of the manors containing the villages of Dudoniai, Uliunai and Gautkalnis was named Karaliava and the other was named – Bistrampolis.

Bistramai holdings were connected by Karolis Bistramas from Karliava at the beginning of nineteenth century. The latter’s son Karolis (1819 – 1887), the marshal of Upyte district (powiet), married Zofija Mineikaite and has received the manors of Upyte and Stultiskiai with some smaller folwarks as a dowry. His son Vladislovas who has inherited the manors did not show a big interest in the administration of his wide holdings. Usually he spent the winters with his family in Warsaw. He died in 1918. V.Bistramas was married to Kamenskaite and had 8 children: sons Vladislov, Kazimieras, Karolis and Tadeus and daughters Gabriele, Jadvyga, Michalina and Irena. Tadeus Bistramas who has inherited Bistrampolis married Marija Meistaviciute from Pajuostis. He lived in Vilnius occupied by polish in the interwar period. When the manor was nationalised in 1940, the owners of the manor were named to be his successors. Bistramai has worried about the creation of the residence in line with their wealth only in the middle of nineteenth century. The construction of new masonry manor palace was finished in 1850. Development of the whole manor ensemble together with park planting has lasted till 1863. The pools were excavated in the park and the bridges over it were built. Two-storied brick palace with arcade and columns in the main facade was built in western part of the park. Its ground floor was devoted for the administration. In addition, there were guest rooms and the entire right side had a large hall which was divided into two unequal parts by semi-circular arches. Stone stairs led from the entrance hall to the first floor. The first floor was devoted for representation. It had bigger and smaller salons, dining room, working room and library. Its parquet from dark and light wood is composed of various fretworks and motives of the stars. The floor of other rooms was wooden and lacquered. Two rooms had fireplaces while others – rectangular and triangular stoves of glazed tiles. The palace was furnished with Louis XVI style, empyr and Louis Philip era furniture. There were many works of art, weapons and valuable family archive. The library had around 2000 books. The fate of art valuables is unknown. Many of them could have lost during the First World War. The manor languished in the interwar period as well, as Tadeus Bistramas lived in Vilnius with his family because of his anti-Lithuanian orientation. After the war, the manor was the property of soviet technical hydro-reclamation school economy in Panevezys, later – the property of soviet economy of Uliunai. After the breakup of collective farm system, the manor was without a host for some time. Bistrampolis manor was transferred to the Cathedral of Christ the King in Panevezys in 1997. The public institution "Youth integration possibilities centre” takes care of the manor since 2003. With efforts and resources of the Centre the historical, architectural, polychrome and park studies were made; central manor house reconstruction project was prepared. The road to the manor was asphalted, a parking lot was equipped, pools were cleaned and park was landscaped since 1997. Already traditional Bistrampolis Festival is being held every year in June-August.

The support on amount of 1 809 373 Litas was received from ES structural funds for the manor restoration and its adaptation for the tourism needs in 2006. The restoration of the manor was started in June, 2007. In the very first renovation phase, the central manor palace facades were renovated and the icehouse was restored where the tourism information centre and museum were established; at the former manor power station was also established museum of smugglers of forbidden Lithuanian books whose main attraction is the cross after which the patriarch of smugglers of forbidden Lithuanian books Jurgis Bielinis has died on the 17th of January, 1918. Also the park pavilion and part of the park territory was arranged – planted plants, formed the parterre area of up to 400 square meters, equipped with engineering facilities – outdoor water supply, outdoor drain and clearers, outdoor electrical networks and illumination, outdoor lights installed, the manor gates rebuilt and the parking lots equipped.

In the second phase of the manor renovation in 2008, it was planned to restore the remaining buildings, to equip the central manor palace and set up a sculpture park, remembering the meaningful history of the manor events: - Rebellion of 1863, - The fact that the Nobel Prize winner writer Henrikas Sienkievicius (Henryk Sienkiewicz) who has been collecting the material for historical trilogy “Deluge” lived and worked in the manor; - The period of smugglers of forbidden Lithuanian books.

When this phase has been implemented, the central manor palace, where the restaurant, hotel, conferences’ and events’ halls were established, has opened its door at the end of 2008. The wooden sculptures ensemble documenting the historical events has decorated the park and approaches of the manor in the summer of 2009. This ensemble reminds the tourists passing through of a history and culture of our country.

Another renovation phase of Bistrampolis manor was started at the end of 2008 – it was the project funded by Norwegian financial mechanism - „The restoration of the former stud farm of Bistrampolis manor and its adaption for conferences’ and tourism information needs“. In the middle of 2010, the former stud farm turned into a modern concert-conference hall for up to 400 people and has opened its door for the visitors of Bistrampolis manor. The new hall is versatile, easily adaptable for conferences, seminars and public events. Modern illumination, sound and video equipment are installed here. It is the largest and most modern hall in Panevezys district, unique space that has kept the relicts of the old interior.

The last project funded by EU structural funds was started in July, 2010 – The restoration of wains’ building belonging to Bistrampolis manor complex and its adaption for hotel needs. After the implementation of reconstruction works phase, the economical class hotel and a SPA centre with sauna and Jacuzzi was established in the wains building in the middle of 2011.

Bistrampolis manor is the biggest heritage object in Panevezys district which was conceived to resurrect. Hopefully it will become one of the most attended cultural and tourism objects in the country.

Bistrampolis manor is entered into the Register of Lithuanian Republic of Cultural Property (G 120 K). The park is a natural monument (Gv 80).