FOR THE PUBLIC’S ATTENTION

South Africa, in line with other countries in the world, places plaques in different towns, suburbs to indicate promotion of conservation.  They may  be as varied as  buildings, squares, objects, sites, environments.

Visitors or local citizens strolling around Cape Town will see various Blue Plaques with a brief informative text printed on each.  At the corner of Queen Victoria Street (English text) and Wale Street (Afrikaans text) the passer by will see these blue plaques attached to a Provincial building and read “ J N von Dessian whose book collection became, by his bequest, the first public library in South Africa, dwelt on this site from 1756 to 1761.”  As a matter of interest the Dessinian collection is housed in the National Library of South Africa (Cape Town campus), Queen Victoria Street.

Crossing to 4 Wale Street will bring into view another plaque indicating that between “1679-1782 a hospital of the Netherlands East India Company stood on this site.” Further down towards Longmarket Street another plaque will inform the viewer “On this site stood the house of the principal surgeon of the Dutch East India Company 1697-1724.”  Many more will be found as one observes the city.

Further travel in South Africa will reveal other plaques bearing the names of either the Simon van der Stel Foundation or Heritage South Africa as the organisations promoting the above ideal.