The historic Hanseatic League had an essential role in shaping the development of the Baltic Sea Region (BSR). It can even be seen as a forerunner of the EU in the voluntary cooperation of towns that shaped premodern society profoundly and created a lasting community of cities.
The rich cultural heritage of the Hanseatic League (UNESCO memory of the world listing pending) is being individually presented in Hanseatic towns, but has not yet been presented as a common asset at the transnational level. Rather, Hanseatic towns and communities are perceived as a collection of individual places, lacking links to experience the Hanse heritage as one of the main cultural and historic roots and a source of regional identity of the BSR.
To this end, the FGHO and the Association HanseVerein are working together on the Interreg Baltic Sea Region-Project. It will address this gap by jointly developing transnational links based on historic trade routes dating back to medieval times, allowing citizens and visitors alike to experience a culture shaped by trade, individual encounters, and common economic policy. The aim is to express the common Hanseatic heritage by creating tangible thematic routes linked to specific Hanseatic trading goods (e.g. herring, wax). These will be connected to related cultural and cultural tourism offers The project will use existing contacts between Hanseatic towns to improve the visibility and awareness of the joint cultural heritage. It will benefit from being embedded in the HANSE network and the network of Cultural Routes of the Council of Europe. This guarantees a wide transfer of outputs and a wide transnational impact.