Hundreds of volunteers are trying to save the wooden churches in northern Russia
The European Russian North is home to some of the country’s most striking examples of wooden architecture, many of which date back to at least 200 years and feature belfries, log fences and turrets. Unfortunately, most of the estimated 7,500 wooden monuments in the area — which include chapels, churches and larges temples — are abandoned or in a decrepit state. Every year, and despite being under formal state protection, dozens of them are all but destroyed due to neglect, rain or fire.
Hundreds of volunteers are trying to save these churches. But because volunteers cannot restore cultural heritage sites, Saprykin and his comrades can only carry out emergency work, hoping that the stopgap measures will last as long as it takes for the state to intervene.