The Association of Historical Settlements in Bohemia, Moravia and Silesia (SHS CMS)
(SHS CMS) is a voluntary, special-interest, non-party, and non-governmental organization primarily of historical municipalities or their parts in which important cultural values, especially immovable monuments are preserved. The Association was established at the initiative of towns in November 1990. Towns and villages are playing a very specific role, as they represent both owners and public administration, and for private owners are the most important partners in the restoration, maintenance, and use of immovable cultural monuments.
The activities of the Association are in all respects focused on the preservation, protection, and permanently sustainable use of the cultural heritage. In order to attain this goal and thus to fulfil the purpose of its existence, the SHS CMS in particular: popularises, publicises, and propagates the importance and problems of the cultural heritage, arranges exhibitions, expert seminars, conferences, etc. open to the public, asserts the specific problems of historical settlements in the amending and drafting of legal norms, co-operates with organizations and institutions, which have similar objectives with those of the SHS CMS, and operate in the Czech Republic and abroad.
The most important activities of the Association include care of the Programme of the Regeneration of Urban Monument Reserves (UMR) and Urban Monument Zones (UMZ). The rules of the Programme (including multi-source financing) govern the regular and successful regeneration of protected areas in our towns and villages. The Prize for the Best Preparation and Implementation of the Regeneration Programme of UMR and UMZ connected with the title "Historical Town of the Year" has been awarded since 1994.
Since 1991 as the co-organizer and since 1998 as the main guarantor in the Czech republic, the Association has been arranging European Heritage Days – EHD every September. The EHD is an all-European project inspiring informal awareness of the roots of national identities, and the protection of the cultural bequest of our ancestors. The European Heritage Days are held under the aegis of the Council of Europe, and in the Czech Republic also under the aegis of the supreme state bodies.
The methodical effect of the Association rests in the arrangement of expert seminars and conferences. In addition to purely professional themes, such as colour and detail in architecture or greenery in historical settlements, interest has been focused in recent years on the connection of monument protection and economic development of historical towns and the whole country, matters relating to tourism, and new construction in the historical parts of towns. These events are regularly attended by professionals representing state administration, local governments, owners, and entrepreneurs.
The Association asserts the specific problems of historical settlements in the amending and drafting of legal norms, which influence the economic and legal status of all owners of monuments, municipalities, and their management.
The Association is a partner of the Ministry of Culture, the Ministry for Regional development, and the Ministry of the Environment of the Czech Republic, bodies of the supreme representative organs, non-governmental institutions operating in monument conservation, and independent non-profit organizations taking care of the national heritage, and co-operates with other organizations and institutions, which have similar objectives with those of the SHS CMS, and operate in the Czech Republic and abroad.