The United States government, through the U.S. Ambassadors Fund for Cultural Preservation (AFCP), has awarded a grant to conserve a 17th century Royal Palace and Archaeology Museum in Kandy. Funding for the project totals over 52 million Sri Lankan rupees ($265,000).
Since 2001, AFCP has funded 14 projects in Sri Lanka, including the conservation of the Rajagala Buddhist forest monastery, the preservation of Buddhist, Hindu, and other collections in the Anuradhapura Archaeological Museum, the restoration of the Batticaloa Dutch Fort, and the preservation of the intangible heritage of ritual music and dance forms of the Adivasi, Tamil, and Buddhist communities.
This newest project aims to conserve the Old Kandyan Kings’ Palace and upgrade the Archaeology Museum in the Kings’ Palace located within the Sacred Temple of the Tooth complex. The conservation of these important architectural, cultural, and historical monuments at the UNESCO World Heritage Site will provide future generations of students, scholars and Sri Lankans the ability to view and continue to learn about the history of the ancient Kandy kingdom.
By conserving monuments located within the religiously and historically symbolic Kandy city, the United States also hopes to encourage tourism, promote economic development, and help preserve Sri Lanka’s magnificent cultural heritage.