Traditional house in Nida, Neringa. Image via Pixabay.
The community of Neringa, on the west coast of Lithuania, has called for signatures and support to block the government from selling historic buildings in the area at public auction.
The lighthouse and its outbuildings are considered iconic parts of the area’s heritage by locals. Neringa is one of the smallest municipalities in Lithuania, located on the Curonian Spit, which is a designated UNESCO World Heritage site because of historic efforts made to protect the land from coastal erosion.
However, the area has become a popular destination for wealthy holidaymakers in recent years. Residents of the area fear that a public auction of the lighthouse would allow developers to damage the fragile environment.
The community is calling for the the buildings to be handed over to the local municipality. They hope that the lighthouse could become a cultural venue, which would encourage international tourism in the area. Organisers of the protests at the lighthouse see this as an opportunity to strengthen culture and arts in the area while still being economically justifiable.