An archaeological site in the southern Urals rose in line with Stonehenge, Florence and Titanic

All of them are threatened with destruction at the hands of tourists vandals …

In this cave, according to legend, hid Princess Vera

Vera Island on a favorite among elite Chelyabinsk Lake Turgoyak where concentrated about 40 interesting archaeological sites, some of which scientists compare it to the famous Stonehenge in England, with renowned North Caucasian dolmens, this summer has started to lose its uniqueness and about may be on the brink destruction.

The paradox is that the concept of this place of the museum complex, capable of protecting found, and the documents to transfer land to the appropriate status already. However, while they were getting ready, the value of the island was able to "see through" the tourist industry. Intellectual substrate only fuels interest. And a small piece of land in the western part of the lake was the site of mass, and now uncontrolled, tourist attraction. Ancient megaliths pulled apart into pieces, souvenirs, paint your own autographed memorabilia and use historical place to "purely sit and cultural rest" over a glass of tea. Why quarrel those who must now oversee the island of the Faith, and whether the authorities will have time with archaeologists to counter the financial interests of the tourist industry, not interrupting people's desire for history — read the article «URA.Ru».

Vera Island, in the middle of the lake stretches Turgoyak. According to legend, one day there came a certain Princess Vera, who did not want to obey her parents and marry the unloved. Princess founded a monastic hermitage on the island and treated illnesses pilgrims. In honor of her island got its name. And in 2003, were discovered megaliths: dolmens, menhirs, stone quarry, giant homes started in the ancient stone. During the first expedition, led by research fellow of the Institute of History and Archaeology, Ural Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences Stanislav Grigoryev, it became clear that some of the monuments of about 6000 years — they are older than the pyramids of Egypt and its functionality to remind European antiquity of the same period, including the famous Stonehenge. Since that time, studies are being conducted every field season, the start of which at one time supported the former deputy governor of the Chelyabinsk region Andrey squinting. By TURGOJAK he has long indifferent. Here he has a name and some tourist facilities, built with a businessman close to him, now co-owner of the bank "Snezhinskiy" Igor Serbinov.

Today, almost half of the island — the monuments. Here and ancient people, and Old Believer monastery of the 18th century, the one where, according to legend, hid Princess Vera. Even dug up the stone heads Panthers, samples of ancient sculptures. But after the archaeologists on the island were pulled and tourists. And they, as the head of "The Island Faith", an archaeologist Lada Ivasko, trampling the cultural layer on the island and demolish monuments. Recently someone dragged the stone that supports the body of so-called "megalithic number 1" unique man-made stone cave-dwelling. At the limit visits to 30 people a day nobody pays any attention … TV reporters Peregon-TV, to do a story about Faith, commissioned, in the day of the shooting counted 120 visitors.

Tour really popular — it consists in the fact that the catamaran takes those who yearn to touch antiquities, from the banks TURGOJAK and takes for granted. There is a two-hour guided tour and return passengers to shore. The fare is 500 rubles few people bother.
As told Lada Ivasko, this year the fund management due to the numerous visitors, who by the way firms are brought to the island itself, almost without coordinating plans with the fund, decided to abandon the excavation and the Ministry of Culture has ordered the so-called open letter authorizing for archaeological research. Ivasko believes that there is no ban tourists from entering the island, further work is meaningless. And this prohibition shall enter the regional Ministry of Culture.

Island — a paradise for archaeologists, with his findings

Meanwhile, there is a downside. Some archaeologists, in informal conversations with «URA.Ru» say — that they demolish the island tourists, vandals have Lada Ivasko wine itself, which two years ago was regarding cooperation with travel agencies as a boon, allowing to fill the fund in cash. On this basis, it is rumored that she even had a quarrel with pervoissledovatelem Grigoriev, who appears on the island now only on occasion, and this summer generally prefer to study ancient Zyuratkul.

At the regional authorities have a point of view on this issue. Since March 2009, the island of the Faith, according to the decision of the Legislative Assembly of the Chelyabinsk region, is a landmark site of regional significance, that is, protected cultural heritage.

Until two years ago, there was talk that the island should be given the status of the museum-reserve, with appropriate funding from the regional budget, but the territory is in federal ownership. Pay for the protection of the island from its treasury South Ural authorities simply do not have the right. However, in 2011, when to take the regional target program "Development of tourism and recreation activities in the Chelyabinsk region in 2011 — 2016", the island of the Faith has been specified in paragraph 15, the application program. It is assumed that in 2013, the development of "cultural heritage" which is, recall, is the island, will be allocated 4 million rubles, the same amount in 2014, and 6 million rubles in 2015 and in 2016. At present, in 2012, the funding is not provided — all for the same reason, the land is federal. Authorities in the region are hoping that by next year will be able to negotiate with the state forest and the territory of the Faith will transfer to lease the regional State Institution of Culture "State Research and Production Centre for the Protection of Cultural Heritage of the Chelyabinsk region" (GNPTS).

— This year we have withdrawn permission, allow management to monitor the Fund island monuments on Faith. We have them have accumulated too many claims — said «URA.Ru» Culture Minister Alexei Betekhtin Chelyabinsk region. — Federal land there, but the monuments are considered objects of regional significance. Last year, the fund received 300,000 rubles this year received the first tranche of 100 thousand rubles. But these funds go in vain, we do not see results, reports on the performance of the fund do not get.

— So say that tourists trampling all. You can deny the tourists go there?

— How can we deny? — Surprised the minister. — Federal Land. We have no reason to even put protection. That's when the island will be leased to GNPTS, then we will be able to take drastic measures. However, we GNPTS in a week there will wind up with devolution Care monuments. Try to at least limit to comply with tourists. And be sure to return to the island of Stanislav Grigoryev.

And these words, there is reason. According to the «URA.Ru», Lada Ivasko she intends to resign as director of the head of "The Island of Faith." It has already proposed a candidate for the post. True name of her successor has not made public, but the promise to solve the issue next week at a meeting of the Foundation Board.

Much easier to create an archaeological museum in the open air — said «URA.Ru» Stanislav Grigoryev. — Under whose aegis, fund or GNPTS Chelyabinsk region, it is the second question. But this should be, as its interest in the development of the island of the Faith began to show big business. As to Lada Ivasko, the man she is very active, has done much to develop the concept of the Archaeological Museum in the open, she collected the documents for transfer of land, operate with tourist industry. But the character she is quite heavy. I do not agree that it is necessary to close the island for tourists. Another thing is that with the mass pilgrimage to do away. Necessary to regulate the flow.

Archaeologist has confirmed that he intends to return to the island, and even engage in new research. Open letter, it turned out, it still is. Excavations are planned for August — remains to solve the issue of their funding.

Meanwhile, the events unfolding around the islands of the Faith, in the scientific world have caused serious concern. "Information about what is happening there, I was surprised. If this is true, so it is necessary to increase their efforts in this direction (of the museum), "- said a senior researcher at the Institute of History and Archaeology, Ural Branch of Russian Academy of Sciences Valentine Viktorov, curator of the study of megalithic stone structures of the Urals. The idea to create the island Faith archaeological museum in the open air, in her opinion, it is absolutely true. This will provide adequate protection of the unique facilities, to continue their research. And at the same time promote the antiquity of our citizens to form an adequate understanding of how rich, varied, and often unique, their own history.

Especially as the island itself Faith Scientists consider very interesting from a historical point of view of the object. "His study answers the question of the construction methods and purpose of megalithic stone structures in ancient times, including the only surviving residence and dolmens (stone tomb), similar to the North Caucasian. In the Urals, they are a relatively recent, and therefore before the end not all been identified and studied, "- said Viktorov.

Will they be able to keep at least what has been found, another question to which the answer will be given in the near future.

Albina Zolotukhin, Igor Pushkarev. PHOTO — Vadim Akhmetov, © «URA.Ru»

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