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1. St. Petersburg as a Phenomenon of Russia5

2. The First Britons in Saint Petersburg6

3. The First British Enterprises in Saint-Petersburg..9

4. The Russian History with an English Accent..11

4.1. The Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace...11

4.2. The Sergei Palace.12

4.3. The Anglo-Russian Hospital in the Dmitri Palace...17

5. The Lost Past - The Cable Factory of M.Edwards and T.Cavos.20

6. St. Petersburg and Great Britain today22




In December 1990 UNESCOs World Heritage Committee included the historical centre of Saint-Petersburg and the group of architectural monuments in the World Cultural Heritage List of UNESCO. It was a very important decision for the city as it helped Petersburg preserve significant places which reflect the culture and traditions of different countries of the 18-19th centuries. Actually about 10% of all historical monuments of Russia are situated there. They make Saint Petersburg a unique city-museum with a special European atmosphere.

For many years a lot of countries created Petersburgs image and it was Britain which not only brought English culture to the city but also helped it progress in the Western way. The Britons did a lot to make St. Petersburg an important industrial and cultural centre. A lot of British buildings constructed at that time are historic symbols of the past. Although there is an opinion that some of them are not of great importance, they spoil the image of the city and thats why they can be restructured, destroyed or reconstructed. Thus House No. 56 on the English embankment was originally acquired by the British community over 250 years ago. Now it is no longer a place of worship but an ordinary souvenir shop. The English shops which flourished at the end of the eighteenth century in various parts of the city and in particular the English Shop at the end of Nevsky Prospect have recently disappeared.

The problem of old buildings is essential for St. Petersburg. From the one hand they demand a great amount of money for their maintenance but from the other hand they help us keep history. The early period of the Anglo-Russian relationship, its influence on the development of Saint-Petersburg in the 18-19th centuries and the importance of Britains help to Russians during the World War I is not covered enough. It is necessary to define if old buildings can be considered a historical and cultural heritage for people.


The material of this research work will be useful for better understanding the Britons and their role in the life of Saint-Petersburg as the question of tolerant attitude and respect to other nations is of great importance nowadays.

The aim of this research work was: by means of special literature, TV programs, newspaper articles, documents about city historic places to find out the level of Britains influence on the life of Saint-Petersburg from the time of the foundation of the city up to the beginning of the 20th century.

Our tasks were:

1. collecting and studying the information on the topic;

2. revising the information;

3. making conclusions;

4. making the presentation of the results;

5. presenting the research work in English class and at the school history conference.

Resources: special literature, TV programs, Internet, historic documents.


1. St. Petersburg as a Phenomenon of Russia.

The foundation of St. Petersburg was a so-called milestone which changed Russias destiny. St. Petersburg became a bridge which connected the country with Europe. The new Russian history started. It was St. Petersburg which favored the creation of the navy, development of science, culture and education and many other innovations in the country. Britain played a great role in this process. [ 1]

The association of Britain with St Petersburg goes back to the first days of the city, but it was truly cemented only in 1723 when the city became the empires trading centre.

At the end of the 17 century Peter I came to England to learn the theory of ship-building. He spent there 3 months. Peter I visited palaces, castles, theatres, museums, Oxford University, Greenwich observatory, the English Royal Society, the National Mint. Also he met with Isaac Newton. The tsar was satisfied with the acquaintance with the country. He wrote to Russia: The English island is the best and the most beautiful in the world. [9] Peter I called his visit to England very helpful as he used to say that he would have remained just a carpenter if he hadnt learnt from the Englishmen. [ 2]

His visit to England was important not only for himself but also for other countries as well. A famous British historian of the 19th century Thomas Macaulay wrote about Peter Is three-month visit to England: His voyage began a new epoch not only in the history of his country but also of ours and of all mankind.[9]

Actually it was the beginning of a new epoch. The tsar and his assistants started recruiting Britons. There were a lot of military men, engineers, physicians and constructors among them. Peter I greatly appreciated talented specialists and many Englishmen received important official posts in St. Petersburg. The development of Saint Petersburg in the Western way began.


2. The First Britons in Saint Petersburg

In the 18th century the population of Saint Petersburg was 250 thousand people and about 2000 of them was English. It was only 0,2-0,3% of the whole population but the Britons role in the life of St. Petersburg was significant.

The Britons settled in St. Petersburg mainly on the English Embankment. Soon a small but prosperous colony was formed here. It preserved national English features, the language, the culture and the life-style. There was a real cult of British products, skills and knowledge. The Britons affirmed that all things for daily life and comfort (and even coal) were to be imported from Britain. Lately most of them tied their lives to the new Russian capital. [ 3]

Among Englishmen in Saint-Petersburg there were a lot of outstanding seamen because Peter I understood the role of the navy for any state. Peter I often quoted the statement: "A ruler that has but an army has one hand, but he who has a navy has both."[9] Sir Alexander Gordon (an admiral), Christopher OBrian (a rear-admiral), Richard Brown (the shipbuilding superintendent of the Baltic Fleet), Thomas Sanders (Vice Admiral) did a lot for the development of the Russian navy and made Russia an outstanding maritime power.

The English played a great role in the creation of the Admiralty even six years before the beginning of its construction. In 1698 two prominent English shipbuilders, Joseph Nay and Richard Cousins signed contracts with Peter I and came to Russia. There they participated in the development of the Admiralty shipyard and construction of the Baltic Fleet. The ships that they built were the best for that period and substantially strengthened the Russian naval power.

Also it was the time of the development of trade between Russia and Britain. Englishmen imported textiles, watches, tin tableware, snuff-boxes, machines, coal, steel, leather, paints, fish, coffee and other merchandise. English furniture was especially fashionable. It was ordered at London workshops and Russian furniture-makers were also sent to England to learn.


Soon the first major trade agreement between Russia and Great Britain was signed, according to which Great Britain received the status of most favored nation. For almost two centuries Britons played the leading role in Russian foreign trade.

Not only English goods were in great demand in St.Petersburg. British physicians were always popular on the banks of the Neva. The personal doctor of Catherine II was the Englishman Dr.Rogerson. When the empress decided to be vaccinated against smallpox to be an example to other people she invited the well-known English doctor Thomas Dimsdale for this purpose. The vaccination was a success and the grateful Catherine showered the doctor with gifts of diamonds and furs, plus £12,000 and a life annuity of £500. He was also bestowed with a hereditary barony of the Russian Empire, which is still held by the family. She later bought houses in Moscow and St Petersburg, which Dr. Dimsdale used as vaccination hospitals.

In 1881 in the city there was organized the Military Medical Academy

and its first president was a great English doctor and administrator J. Wylie.[9]

He managed to create the health care system in Russia. He was also the founder of medical periodicals and organized the publication of the Military Medical Magazine.

The empress Catherine II sincerely admired the cultural achievements and traditions of Great Britain. She began to study the English herself and in a short time English became the second important foreign language after French. The popularity of it was directly connected with the fashion for English tutors and governesses. The reading of Byron and Shakespeare in the original was considered not only a sign of good taste but also deep knowledge of literature.

One more English fashionable trend appeared in the middle of the 18th century in Saint Petersburg. It was the beginning of the period of English landscape parks. So English gardeners Charles Sparrow, father and son Bush,


James Meaders and William Gould came to the Russian capital and created almost all the best parks there and in its suburbs: Gatchina, Pavlovsk, Petergoff, Tsarskoe Selo.

The second half of the 18th century was the period of the most active scientific and cultural exchanges between England and Russia. One of the best traditions of that time was investing in Russia European innovations by the Britons, whose activity was in very different fields.


3. The First British Enterprises in Saint-Petersburg

After the defeat of Napoleon Britain enjoyed a strong place in Europe councils. Its strength was in industry and trade and the navy which protected this trade. Due to all these factors new Anglo-Russian enterprises came into being in St. Petersburg. [ 4]

A rather big group of Britons in Russia was represented by industrial and

textile manufacturers. Charles Gascoigne, a Scottish engineer, designed the Izhora Plants in Kolpino not far from Saint-Petersburg and founded the St.Petersburg Cast-Iron Plant (nowadays the Kirov Plant) and Matthew Clark, an English innovator, became its first director.

Charles Bird was a prominent engineer and businessman. It was Saint Petersburg where he founded the first private mechanical and casting plant. Bird created the archless ceilings for the New Admiralty docks, constructive elements for the St. St. Isaacs Cathedral and the bas-reliefs for the Alexander Column. In 1815 the first Russian steam ship named Elizabeth was built at his plant. Soon it started regular runs from St. Petersburg to Kronhshadt. The first steamship company was established by Bird the same year

Mac McPherson is known as the founder of the Baltic Plant. In 1857 the first steam machines for the wooden frigates Oslyabya, Peresvet and Ilya Muromets were manufactured there. Soon there was made the first metal ship - the gunboat Opyt.

James Thornton, an English manufacturer, founded The Factory of James Thornton (nowadays Nevskaya Manufaktura) which was the most English enterprise in the Russian capital with workshops, residential houses, food-store and a church.

Essen-Steinbock-Fermor, a Scottish merchant, was the founder of the Russian Passage department store, a large European-style trading centre.


He decided to construct a centre of trade, culture and entertainment in the same building, the first in the world. Passage included a restaurant, a hotel and a concert hall with permanent orchestra and gypsy choir. It was one of the most fashionable places in Saint-Petersburg at that time.

In the 19th century Britain was at its most powerful and self-confident state. After the industrial revolution Britain was the "workshop" of the world and it shared its achievements with an open hand with Saint Petersburg.


4. St. Petersburgs Palaces the Russian History with an English Accent

Eduardo Chillida, a Spanish sculptor, one of the greatest artists of the 2nd half of the 20th century wrote: The Guggenheim Museum Bilbao looks like a great adventure. [15] St. Petersburgs museums not only look like a great adventure but also they are an outstanding historic encyclopedia. Turning over the pages of this encyclopedia everyone can find the signs of English life-style not only in the famous enterprises of the city but also inside its palaces, cathedrals and mansions.

There are a lot of historic buildings in St. Petersburg which due to their inhabitants had an English accent in the past: the Winter Palace, the Anichkov Palace, and the Yusupov Palace.

4.1. The Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace

The Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace in Nevsky Prospect is one of the brightest examples of the Russian palaces with the English life-style. [ 5]

According to the old manuscripts the first Beloselsky-Belozersky Palace was built in 1747 for Prince Mikhail Andreevich Belosselsky during the reign of Tsarina Elizabeth. It was a small building designed in the French style with a large private garden and a launch onto the canal.

After the death of Prince Mikhail Andreevich Belosselsky the palace was inherited by his son Prince Alexander Mikhailovich who was a close friend of Tsar Paul I. Due to their friendship Paul I allowed the revival of the ancient title of Prince of Belozersk. Since that time the family would be known as the Belosselsky-Belozersky family. Soon they would give their name to their palace.

After the death of Prince Mikhail Andreevich Belosselsky the palace was inherited by his son Prince Alexander Mikhailovich who was a close friend of Tsar Paul I. Due to their friendship Paul I allowed the revival of the ancient h1 of Prince of Belozersk. Since that time the family would be known as the Belosselsky-Belozersky family. Soon they would give their name to their palace.

Some time later Princess Elena Pavlovna, the widow of the son of Alexander Mikhailovich, decided to reconstruct the building. A new palace was


built under the control of Andreas Stackensneider, the court architect of Tsar Nicholas I. Soon the Belosselsky-Belozersky Palace became the most lavish palace in Russia with the most lavish balls and concerts in St. Petersburg. It was a great honor to be invited here. The palace looked similar to the Rastrelliesque Stroganov Palace on the Moika canal. Sculptor David Jensen was asked to produce a replica of it. It was originally painted a deep green with white accents, and faux bronze decoration. After the major renovations in 1847- 48, the palace - complete with piano nobile (the second story containing minor rooms with finer views), concert hall, rare paintings, and palace church - got a dazzling Rococo appearance.

At that period there was not evident English trends in the Belosselsky-Belozersky Palace though it was constructed in accordance to fashionable European demands. The owners followed Russian traditions but in an aristocratic way.

4.2. The Sergei Palace

The maintenance of the palace demanded a lot of money and at last it was put up for sale. It was at the time of the engagement of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich, a son of Alexander II to Princess Elisabeth of Hesse and the Rhine, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, in 1883. The couple needed a residence in the city and found this building suitable. It became their principal residence after its purchase by Sergei Alexandrovich. He gave the palace his name and its present red exterior and unforgettable interior with a vast library and a Slavic revival church. Actually since that time the Russian history of the Belosselsky-Belozersky Palace has got an English accent.

In Russia Princess Elisabeth, a granddaughter of Queen Victoria, an elder sister of the future Russian Tsarina Alexandra Fedorovna, became Grand Duchess Elisaveta Fedorovna or Ella as she was called by her relatives. After her first meeting with her future husband she fell in love with everything connected


with him. She quickly grew to love Russia and embraced the Orthodox faith. The Grand Duke was a deeply religious man who strictly observed the fasts, went to church frequently and visited monasteries. The Grand Duchess followed her husband everywhere. Privately she told her friends that she experienced a wonderful feeling of mystery and grace, so different from what she had felt in her native Lutheran church. Soon she made up a decision to convert to Orthodoxy which would support her up to her death.

Well-educated, intelligent, aristocratic, Elisaveta Fedorovna wanted to be good in everything. So she learnt Russian cuisine and public traditions, national holidays and outstanding personalities. Every day she had an hour and a half lesson of the Russian language and even tried to read Dostoevsky in original. But as she wrote to her grandmother Queen Victoria old good England hadnt let her off at all. It was everywhere: in wet misty London weather, in the English Passage in Nevsky, and even in her grandmothers Victoria halls with atlantes and caryatids (the symbol of inner power and forbearance Elisavetas life credo) in the Sergei Palace. All in all contemporaries considered her to be a strange creature with the life full of contradictions and mysteries [4]

According to the latest European fashion at the fan-shaped staircases visitors were met by a servant. Usually he had such an arrogant expression on his face that anyone could think that at least he was the closest relative of the Grand Duke. Not far from him at the big rich-decorated mirror there was Sergei Alexandrovich himself, tall and fair with delicate features and beautiful light green eyes, [4] in the uniform of Commander of the 1st Battalion Preobrazhensky Life Guard Regiment. Elisaveta Fedorovna was standing upstairs and only her reflection could be seen in the mirror. (European etiquette should be kept).

Nowadays all the halls in the palace are still full of English things. In the Oak Hall the floor, bookcases, walls are made of oak the tree of the British

Royal Family. The stained-glass windows give the unique effect of the


moonlight (the secret of which was lost). The 500-kg weight copper chandeliers as in church make the hall solemn. The fireplace is decorated with ornamented tiles brought from London. Gothic style of English castles. Sergei Alexandrovich used this hall as a library. Here he had a great number of rare books in Russian, German, French, Latin, Italian and English (the Grand Duke spoke it fluently). Shelves were full of different things: marble busts of the members of the Tsars family, antiques from Constantinople, collections of rarities from Palestine. (It looked like the British Museum). [ 6]

The Picture Gallery was painted in the color of a faded rose being in fashion at that time. Sergei Alexandrovich, a real expert and judge of art, had an excellent collection of Italian and Russian paintings. He didnt only buy canvases by I.Shishkin, V.Vasnetsov, K.Korovin, but also supported them with money. Elisaveta Fedorovna shared the interests of her husband and helped him in everything. Being very talented in painting she gave her pictures for charity to develop Russian art. In spite of the fact that her favorite artists were English ones: William Holman Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Everett Millais, she often sent money to Russian painters in trouble. She was such a devoted wife and such a charming person that Petersburg ladies wanted to follow her in everything. They copied the silhouettes of her dresses (often sent from London), the pearl diadems in her hair (got from India the British colony) and the flowers on her dining table (also made by English masters). Her influence on the style of aristocratic life was great. Thus speaking Russian with a light English accent came in fashion in a short time. [ 7]

The Mirror Hall is another place in the palace having a British flavor. The hosts of the palace were fond of music and theatre. Here F.List, A. Rubenstein and P.Chaikovsky presented their new compositions. Here were performed works by outstanding English musicians - Frederic Delius and Sir Edward Elgar. Here

Elisaveta Fedorovna and future Russian Tsar Nicholas II staged Eugeny Onegin


in Russian (Elisaveta Fedorovna recites the monologue of Tatyana Larina and the part of Eugeny Onegin is played by Nicholas) and Hamlet in English with the Grand Duchess as Ophelia and Nicholas as Hamlet. [ 8]

Another hall with Anglo-Russian history is the Dining Room decorated with nice classical still lives with cupids and exotic fruit. When there were no guests or relatives in the palace the noble family had typical English food. They enjoyed porridge for breakfast, meat with potatoes for dinner and endless rice puddings and baked apples. [9] But on special occasion visitors had a chance to taste the most delicious dishes in Saint Petersburg: duck fillet with cognac and honey apple, artichoke a-la Leones, starlet in champagne and certainly traditional Victorian cuisine: soup Windsor, Oxford puddings, Queen Charlottes omelette

with rum. The color of the flowers on the table was the same as the color of the dress of the Grand Duchess. It was her rule: when she was going to visit somebody she never informed about the dresses ladies should wear. She warned only about the color of the flowers on the tables. After that hosts and their guests had to think through to the end by themselves. It was considered to be an overseas caprice of the overseas Duchess. [ 9]

When there were no concerts or balls in the palace Elisaveta Fedorovna met her guests in the Crimson Sitting Room with a wonderful view of Nevsky Prospect, the Anichkov Bridge and the Fontanka River. This hall was decorated with purple and gold damask drapery, furniture in Thomas Chippendales Anglicized Rococo style and unique parquet. It was the most comfortable and cozy room in the palace. Here the Grand Duchess wrote her letters to old good England, tried to read Tolstoy or embroidered beautiful landscapes. From time to time she used a secret door of this room on more tribute to the European fashion. Being unnoticed she listened to different conversations. Elisaveta Fedorovna was aware of everything taking place in her palace. [ 10]

All the main halls were upstairs on the piano nobile. Also there were a


lot of big and small rooms downstairs. But the dearest place for Sergei Alexandrovich and Elisaveta Fedorovna was their palace church. There were a lot of remarkable icons, sacred things, and rare church utensils. In a special box covered with glass there was kept a family relic - a miraculous icon. In 1888 Sergei Alexandrovich was in a business trip in Palestine. He visited sacred mountain Favor, the place where Jesus Christ spoke to his pupils. Here Sergei Alexandrovich was presented an ancient icon Transfiguration of Jesus Christ. It was painted by local masters on the sawn end of the relict tree. Also he took a sacred granite stone from this area. In Saint-Petersburg the icon and the stone were put into a silver frame. It was decorated with the ornament on the uniform of the Preobrazhensky Life Guard Regiment. This icon was said to be really miraculous: it strengthened faith and weakened sadness, helped feeble people and cured ill ones. In spite of being converted to Orthodoxy Elisaveta Fedorovna said her prayers in English more often than in Russian.

In the spring of 1891, Nicholas II appointed Sergei Alexandrovich as Governor General of Moscow and the family left Saint Petersburg forever. On February 17, 1905 the Grand Duke would be murdered by Ivan Kalyayev, a member of the Socialist-Revolutionary Partys Combat detachment. After Sergeis death, Elisaveta Fedorovna would put on mourning clothes and sell off her magnificent collection of jewels and other luxurious possessions. With the proceeds she would open the Convent of Sts. Martha and Mary and became its abbess. She would open a hospital, a chapel, a pharmacy and an orphanage on its grounds. She would often visit Moscows worst slums. There she would do all she could to help alleviate the suffering of the poor. She would be murdered during the Russian Civil War in 1918.

In 1992 Elisaveta Fedorovna was glorified by the Russian Orthodox Church as New-Martyr Elisaveta. The Russian Duchess became one of the ten 20th-century martyrs from across the world depicted in statues above the Great West Door of Westminster in London.


4.3. The Anglo-Russian Hospital in the Dmitri Palace

The history of the palace didnt come to an end with the departure of the Grand Duke to Moscow. As the couple didnt have children the Sergei Palace was inherited by their nephew Dmitri Pavlovich and was named the Dmitri Palace. On the day of Dmitris birth his mother slept into a coma. Although doctors had no hope for Dmitri's survival, he lived, with the help of Grand Duke Sergei Alexandrovich. He gave the premature Dmitri the baths prescribed by the doctors, wrapped him in cotton wool and kept him in a cradle filled with hot water bottles. Grown up Dmitri became a very handsome, intelligent, successful young man. His friends called him a creation of Faberge. [18] In spite of his light-minded character Dmitri appreciated everything Sergei Alexandrovich and Elisaveta Fedorovna had done for him and tried to follow them in their initiatives.

Just the Beige Room reminds of the Anglo-Russian events of 1915-1918. Dmitri was greatly impressed with his aunts activities in Moscow and in 1915 he offered his palace as a place for the first Anglo-Russian hospital in Saint-Petersburg. Lady Sybil Grey, daughter of Albert, Fourth Earl Grey, one of the organizers of the hospital wrote to London: The Dmitri Palace is admirably suited for the purpose, and its position in the centre of the Nevsky, a corner house opposite the Empress Marie's palace, is such that the man in the street can see it and know where it is, and who gave it. [13] Dmitri reconstructed the ground floor and arranged his own rooms downstairs, each room in a different wood. Then all the beautiful halls on the piano nobile were supposed to be hospital wards.

In 1915 the London Times wrote: The Anglo-Russian Hospital has a great resonance as it is established with the full support of the British government. In August a Committee is formed under the patronage of HM Queen Alexandra, aunt of Tsar Nicholas II. Its membership bristles with Lords and Lord Mayors, Field Marshalls and Members of Parliament, to say nothing of the Prime Minister


and both Archbishops. The first list of them is headed by the King and Queen. It has been suggested that a hospital is seen as a sort of compromise gesture for the military aid which the Russians request. It is a proposal which has a great response in the British public impressed by the sufferings of the Russian armies. [17] The realization of this idea was connected with the name of Lady Muriel Paget, the Honorary Organizing Secretary of the Executive Committee, and her assistant Lady Sybil Grey.

After long preparations the hospital was opened and a Union Jack flutters proudly from the flagpole on the roof of the palace and on its wall there is

an emblem - a woodcut carved by Sir Richard Paget showing a British lion and a Russian double-headed eagle holding up a Red Cross. [17] All luxurious halls of the most distinguished family in Saint Petersburg were given to Russian soldiers of the World War I and civilians. The hospitals commandant, Dr Andrew Fleming, was pleased with the way the palace had been adapted for its new medical role. The hospital had accommodation for 200 beds. The English staff consisted of 8 doctors and 30 nursing sisters. [ 11]

The Anglo-Russian was arranged perfectly. The Mirror Hall with the two large reception rooms constituted the three main wards. Near to it there was a duty room, a bathroom, lavatories, and a large dressing room with four tables. Beyond the dressing room there was the patients dining room. The operating theatre with anesthetic and sterilizing rooms, the X-ray department and the bacteriological laboratory were on the same floor but in an isolated part of the building. A large room beyond the laboratory was for two surgeons and two dressers, who always slept on the premises. A part of the passage adjoining the church was for the dentist and his outfit.

Over the beds there were plaques commemorating the names of individual donors or individual British towns and cities that had provided the


money. The most lucky was the bed #17 as it was patronized by Elisaveta Fedorovna herself.

Every day started with the pray of the staff before the miraculous Dukes icon Transfiguration of Jesus Christ with the granite stone in the silver frame:

May all who are sick and ill

Quickly be freed from their illness,

And may every disease in the world

Never occur again.

And as long as space endures,

As long as there are beings to be found,

May I continue likewise to remain

To soothe the sufferings of those who live. [17]

All in all this English pray or the highly skilled doctors and nurses, the strict discipline or the faith made miracles: the seriously wounded became healthy and the bed-ridden got up. In its two-year life the Anglo-Russian hospital received and cured over 4000 bad-wounded Russian soldiers and citizens.

After the revolution of 1917 the commandant of the Hospital evacuated his staff from Petrograd into Finland. The Russian Hospital in the Dmitri Palace was handed over to the new Russian Red Cross. On 18 January 1918 the English accent of the Russian palace disappeared with the last English nurse. Only a special tablet in the Entrance Hall commemorates us that the Anglo-Russian staff in mutual cooperation alleviated the suffering of Russian soldiers and civilians alike. [ 12]

As we see any historical events can be kept in different ways: in architectural styles, palaces interiors or even myths and legends of the past.


5. The Lost Past - The Cable Factory of M.Edwards and T.Cavos

There are a lot of monuments of the past throughout the world and all of them need thorough care. The idea of uniting of the preserving systems of natural and cultural objects was worked out by the United States of America. In 1965 there was created The Trust of the World Heritage for the development of the international cooperation in the process of protecting prominent natural and picturesque places and historical monuments in the world for present and future generations. According to these statements St. Petersburg can be put down in the list of the objects of the World Heritage.

At the very beginning St. Petersburg became a bright example of the unit of European and Russian culture. Those Russians who hadnt visited Western Europe considered the city to be rather European. Europeans thought St. Petersburg to be a young Russian city different from ancient European ones but having the European style of town building.

The image of St. Petersburg and its suburbs made a great influence on the development of architecture, town building and landscape architecture in Russia in the 18-20th centuries.

As St. Petersburg was the capital of Russia at that time it was connected with the activities of the outstanding representatives of culture and with the important events of this period. Now there are about 4 thousands architectural, historical and cultural monuments in the city having special significance but some of them are not in a very good condition and demand a lot of time and money to keep them.

Some years ago a public movement Living City for protecting old buildings came into being in the city. It is a non-government movement that unites people who love and care about St. Petersburg. The goal of this movement is preserving the unique architectural look of the city. [ 13]


One of the historical places which Living City is standing for is the former Cable Factory of M.Edwards and T.Cavos. The factory was built in 1876 in one of the picturesque corners of the mansion of Kushelev-Bezborodko (now it is Piskarev Prospect). In the 1850s this territory was a wonderful place with quiet parks, clean lakes and cozy country houses. 35 years later the first British enterprise appeared on the bank of the lake. Within several years one building turned into a whole factory village with a cable workshop, a tarring house, storehouses, and a boiler room.

After the October Revolution the factory was reorganized into the cord manufacture Neva. In the 1990s the function of it came to an end.

Nowadays this place is different from the original one: multi-storied constructions have been built everywhere, the parks have become neglected, and the factory has been destroyed. Only the main building of it has been kept.

Meanwhile it has still been the favorite place for rest of the citizens. Thus Living City tries to protect the left structure and find investors to reconstruct some ruined parts of it as it is the only example of British industrial style of T.Cavos in St. Petersburg.


6. St. Petersburg and Great Britain Today.

The tragic events of 1917 interrupted the connections between Russia and Britain which had been created over centuries. In 1918 the diplomatic relations between the two countries were broken. After their renewal in the 1920s British official bodies were situated only in Moscow.

The mid 80s were marked by the revival of contacts between the Soviet Union and the United Kingdom.

In 1994 the British Queen Elizabeth II made an official visit to St. Petersburg. Since then visits of members of the royal family and other high-ranking officials have become regular.

Nowadays the UK is one of the main investors in St. Petersburg. About 41% of all investments are from Britain. There are a lot of British-Russian enterprises and programs in the city now. Some years ago a new Anglo-Russian complex Logistic Avalon was opened with the help of British investing company Raven Russia not far from the centre of the city. One more mutual project Venture Investment & Yield Management successfully started in St. Petersburg. A new educational program for British and Russian students The MA Fashion Design and Merchandising course was worked out by Saint-Petersburg State University of Technology and Design and De Montfort University, Leicester.

Numerous mutual projects of reconstructing different places in St. Petersburg have become popular recently. One of the most interesting and important is New Holland- the island having the Anglo-Russian history.

The main shipyard of St. Petersburg, the Admiralty, was built in 1705 but soon it didnt manage to execute a great amount of work in ship-building. It was decided to open a new shipyard on the island New Holland. Soon it was reorganized into the first Russian naval port and in 1892 into an experimental


area for testing models of the first naval ships. It was the place where the model of the first ice-breaker Yermak was built and tested.

After testing Yermak itself was built for the Imperial Russian Navy under the supervision of Admiral Stepan Osipovich Makarov by Armstrong Whitworth in Newcastle upon Tyne at its Low Walker yard. It was launched there in 1898. Yermak served with different branches of Russian and Soviet Navy and Merchant Marine up until 1964. It became one of longest-serving icebreakers in the world.

In December 2004 there was a great fire on the island which destroyed a lot of old constructions there. For a long time this place was lonely and desert. But soon the city government came up to a decision to reconstruct a historic look of the island and a new Russian-English stage in the history of the island began. [ 14]

In 2006 there was declared an international competition for the revival of this place. The winner was ST New Holland, set up by the Moscow-based ST Group controlled by Shalva Chigirinsky who had invited the prominent British architect Norman Forster and pledged to spend $320 million on the project. Norman Fosters plan will integrate the sites disparate elements around a roofed amphitheater enclosing a pond. A gleaming cupola will top the star-shaped structure, which will function as a year-round facility for aquatic events and open-air performances. The arena will be complemented by a 2,000-seat concert hall, three hotels, a two-tier parking lot, gallery space, and retail and office spaces.

The redeveloped island will feature 40,673sqm of retail properties, a 5-star hotel and 2 four-star hotels (56,850sqm in total), a two-level underground car park (1,100 spaces), and 60 apartments. The total of 180,146sqm will be redeveloped or built. Eight new bridges will be added across the canals surrounding the island. The projected annual profit will be at no less than $100 million. [19]



On the whole, the problem of preserving the world cultural and historical heritage is of great importance throughout the world. Only studying the past we are able to see ahead and not to make previous mistakes.

Many people are convinced that changing the image of the cities they make them more comfortable and universal. In my opinion this subject is very controversial. There are many things to be said in favor of modernization of old and useless places. From the other hand this problem should be solved very carefully - sometimes taking away unnecessary and ugly sights people are loosing the historic biography of the place they live at. Moreover the cities are deprived of their individuality and become very much alike.

As we see St. Petersburg managed to preserve a lot from its past and without any doubt can be proud of being included in the World Cultural Heritage List. It is not only a great honor but also a great civil responsibility - the city should share its inherited wealth with people from different countries. Actually even only British inheritance is quite rich: in industry, in ship building, in culture, in medicine, in garden architecture and wherever else.

Analyzing the results of this work I came to a conclusion that a lot of countries influenced the development of St. Petersburg but it was Britain that helped the city progress in the Western way in the 18-19th centuries. Just now we feel the influence of Britain in St. Petersburg: in the buildings on the English Embankment, in the English parks in Pushkin and Pavlovsk, in the Victorian halls of the palaces and even in endless rice puddings and baked apples served in numerous Anglo-Russian cafes. [ 15]

Almost 100 years ago William Faulkner, a Nobel Prize-winning American author, wrote: The past is never dead; it's not even past. [9] It will stay with us forever. We must only treat it with loving care. [ 16]



1. .., .., .., . .. - . : - , 2008.

2. .. The History of England. Parliamentary monarchy. : , 1996.

3. . . . : Logos, 2005.

4. . . .- .: , 2001.

5. . . : , 2004.

6. . . - .: , 2003.

7. .., -.: , 1996.

8. G.A.Apshyein, N.M.Kazanskaya. A Glimpse of Saint-Petersburg. : , 1996.

9. N.N.Karetnikova, R.E. Pavlova, A.A.Smirnova. The British Itinerary. Guide-book with a map St. Petersburg: Fregat Publishing House, 2003.

10. http://beloselskiy-palace.ru/

11. http://www.collectionscanada.gc.ca/nursing-sisters/025013-2202-e.html

12. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beloselsky-Belozersky_Palace

13. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1499826/pdf/bmjcred00630-0047.pdf

14. http://palomnic.org/journal/5/hl/1/


15. http://www.russinitalia.it/europa_orientalis/Cross.pdf

16. http://www.spbin.ru/encyclopedia/palaces/beloselsky.htm

17. http://theesotericcuriosa.blogspot.com/2010/01/recollections-from-diplomatic-eye-miss.html

18. http://www.tvkultura.ru/page.html?cid=762&p=18

19. http://www.vedomosti.ru/newspaper/article/2006/03/20/104859









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