World Monuments Fund was awarded a grant from the European Union in 2014 to restore Christ Church Cathedral in Zanzibar. The Cathedral was built in 1879 on the location of the last permanent slave market in East Africa and is a site of international historic and cultural significance.
|Christ Church Cathedral was built by British missionaries in 1879 on the location of the last permanent slave market in East Africa. Zanzibar slave market was closed in 1873 amid increasing pressure to abolish the East African slave trade. The Universities Mission to Central Africa purchased the site and built the cathedral under the leadership of passionate abolitionist Bishop Steere. The high altar was positioned over the whipping post. Zanzibar’s tropical climate took its toll on the Cathedral and by the time WMFB became involved the cathedral was in danger of collapse. In 2013, the Anglican Diocese of Zanzibar and the Zanzibar Government asked World Monuments Fund to help protect this site of conscience. With a grant of €743,000 from the European Union WMF conserved the cathedral and created a heritage centre commemorating the abolition of slavery. The creation of the Heritage Centre was an opportunity to tell the story of the East African slave trade in an unbiased and factual way, and to promote reconciliation, diversity and tolerance within Tanzania. The project provided training for craftspeople and helped provide employment, tackle poverty and ultimately ensure that trained craftspeople could continue to maintain historic monuments.|