15th October 2008 in Haapsalu

Organization and history

Tallinn initiates a formation of Estonian Union of towns of culture.

The proposition by Toomas Vitsut, Chairman of the Tallinn City Council, to form a Union of Estonian Towns of Culture, was welcomed in Haapsalu.


Vitsut proposed Andreas Rahuvarm, chairman of Haapsalu City Council, and other leaders of culture in Haapsalu, to form an Estonian Union of Towns of Culture together with Tallinn, the future European Capital of Culture. Rahuvarm approved of the idea and was convinced that a lot of towns will be willing to join it.

Vitsut justified his proposal by the fact that Tallinn, being the European Capital of Culture, will give Europe, as well as the world, a unique possibility to show Estonia as an independent unit.

Vitsut explained: „For instance we have started a new brand called „ Tallinn’s Way of Life, “which includes the whole city culture from art to healthy ways of life and traffic. In the same way every other Estonian town has its own unique culture whether being a holiday resort, ski resort, garden city, etc.

Kaia Jäppinen, deputy mayor of Tallinn, who visited Haapsalu together with the chairman of the Tallinn City Council, recalled that already during applying for the European capital of culture Tallinn proposed to other Estonian towns to cooperate and found more than 20 partners. According to Jäppinen cooperation enables to support the priorities of each town and at the same time presents their peculiarities. „ Each town has surely its own story to tell, it has to be picked up and made others listen to you.” she said.

The discussion about further cooperation on the project in the framework of the future European capital of culture in Haapsalu ended with an agreement that a formation of the Union of Estonian towns of culture might take place on 15 May which is the Day of Tallinn.