The European Network In the footsteps of Robert Louis Stevenson (author of works such as Treasure Island, Kidnapped, Travels with a Donkey, 1850-1894) has been accredited as a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe. The Network, to which The Stevenson Way belongs, connects places in Scotland, England, France and Belgium associated with the life and works of Stevenson.
The Cultural Routes programme was launched in 1987 by the Council of Europe. Its objective is to demonstrate, by means of a journey through space and time, how the heritage of the different countries and cultures of Europe contributes to a shared cultural heritage. Nowadays about 30 Cultural Routes link various parts of Europe, such as the Santiago de Compostela Pilgrim Routes, the Viking Routes, the Art Nouveau Network, the European Route of Jewish Heritage and the European Mozart Ways.
The European Network In the footsteps of Robert Louis Stevenson promotes knowledge of the author's works and travels as well as the areas associated with him. Stevenson is fascinating both as a writer and as a person. He wrote in a variety of genres – novels, poems, travel writing and essays. He led a colourful life from a bohemian youth in Edinburgh through travels in Europe and the USA, finally settling in Samoa. The Cultural Route which bears his name is equally varied and offers activities for all ages of cultural events and exploration of townscapes, as well as the more active hiking, canoeing, rowing and even travels with a donkey, all of them interwoven with his works.
The Network is composed of organisations, both public and private sector, active in the fields of culture, the arts, tourism and sport. The areas associated with Stevenson benefit from the added value of belonging to a network. Members of the network inform visitors to their areas of the other places where they can follow in Stevenson's footsteps. The network facilitates the exchange of knowledge and ideas. Its ethos of cross-border co-operation and friendship perpetuates Stevenson's openness to people and places. The Network works to protect and promote the cultural and natural heritage of the member areas. It also assists economic development in those areas which require it, supporting cultural tourism as a means of sustainable development.
This new accreditation as a Cultural Route of the Council of Europe raises the profile of the Network and its member areas helping it to promote the life and works of this fascinating author and to draw attention to the places associated with him. The Network plans to extend its membership further in the spirit of the objectives of the Cultural Route programme to include other areas associated with the author. This recognition by the Council of Europe is a new stage for the European Stevenson Network and all its member territories.
“Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.”
For more information about the European Network In the Footsteps of Robert Louis Stevenson see www.rlstevenson-europe.org/en/
For information on development of the cutural routes see this link: www.decraproject.eu/index.php