Detmold. Prinz Stephan zur Lippe moved to the Residencastle in September with his family and became the new owner of the castle. In a tract, which had not been inhabited for more than 100 years, he and his wife and children are now setting up a new home – and forging future plans. In the interview, the 57-year-old explains in which areas he wants to get involved, which events he would like to offer and why he likes to wear thicker sweaters.
With the move you move into the heart of the city and thus into the middle of society. How do you see your role in it?
Prinz Stephan: We are ordinary citizens of this city and claim any special roles. We move into an exceptional building, a grand monument with a strong symbolic force that is inextricably linked to the city center. I try to read from it the long lines of the story and live on it.
What do you mean specifically?
Prinz Stephan: This means to fill the house with life and at the same time carefully deal with it. It is also about reflecting an inner attitude. The house has been inhabited by the family since the Renaissance, and it has never been expelled from here, not even my grandfather after the revolution. We want to continue this tradition.
Her deceased father was appreciated not only for his kindness, but was a real personality and a moral authority. Will you follow in his footsteps?
Prinz Stephan: It remains me no choice. I’ve been educated to continue his footsteps – this is perhaps the better word. Somewhere, of course, this is also a burden that can not be avoided. These walls also oblige. Whether others have succeeded in fulfilling this obligation must be judged by others.
In which areas do you want to be involved in the future?
Prinz Stephan: I am politically, culturally and socially engaged, since we live in Detmold. Traditionally, this concerns the Theater and the Princess Pauline Foundation. I am also a member of the Kreiskreis. My wife is dedicated to the German Red Cross and Diakonis. And we want to continue this. I also discovered the church area for me. We need to see whether and what new commitments are being made. It is better to be engaged only for a few things and then properly.
In the summer there was a serenade for the first time. Can the Detmolder look forward to other events?
Prinz Stephan: We want to offer the theater in 2017 and the Academy of Music, the castle as a venue. It would be nice if these institutions found a common crystallization point in the historical context. This way you can get to an event format which is unique. My goal is a unique presentation of lively culture and living history.
What plans do you have for the Castle Square?
Prinz Stephan: The Castle Square is a public park, which belongs to the half of the city and half us. It is the entrance to the city. If you park in the Lustgarten, go through the city center. My goal is to maintain and preserve it in this central, urban development function. Events such as “Lippe culinary” and the art market are a good match.
Will there be more events on the pitch in the future?
Prinz Stephan: A total of six events have been agreed with the city. This is a reasonable number. In this context I can imagine all the events that fit and enhance the castle square.
How is the tour of the castle continued?
Prinz Stephan: The guides are available in this form since the beginning of the 20th century. They present a part of the lippish story. I could imagine cooperating with the open-air and the national museum and to illuminate some aspects of history together. For example, our baroque rooms combined with exhibitions on baroque in other places.
Speaking of exhibitions. The Lippische Gesellschaft für Kunst has its seat in the castle …
Prinz Stephan: … and may remain natural. The Lippische Gesellschaft für Kunst makes a very good job and always offers challenging and highly regional exhibitions. These, too, could be linked to other events, for example with concerts. However, this is the responsibility of the company, we can only offer the place for it.
They now live in the castle. What was the biggest challenge in modernization?
Prinz Stephan: Infrastructure. The thick walls in the castle make it difficult to lay new cables. And they interfere with interception. You have to find intelligent solutions.
Is a castle really an energetic catastrophe?
Prinz Stephan: My father has the lock already be connected to the Fernwärmnetz town so increased efficiency and sustainability. The house would surely be an energetic catastrophe if I had the claim to heat every room to 25 degrees. But I did not. It is better to take a thick sweater. In this respect the house also educates us to thrift.
So an insulation could not be reconciled with the monument protection?
Prinz Stephan: No, certainly not. However, we are always happy to advise you on all questions from the memorial offices and appreciate their expertise. We want to finally get the castle and bring it to shine.
Can a traditional house be equipped with modern facilities?
Prinz Stephan: Of course. Each generation has its own style. At the same time, one should not forget the dignity and history of the house. The mixture makes it.
How do you spend the first Christmas party in the new home?
Prinz Stephan: Full classic. First it goes to church, then is messing and there is a good Christmas dinner. One of them will be missing, of course, and that is my father. We will carry him in our hearts.
A landmark with a long history The princely Residenzschloss is not to be imagined from the city center of Detmold. It is the landmark of the Lippische Residenz par excellence – one that has been destroyed in the course of the centuries, rebuilt and expanded in a new form.
“The walls of the striking thick tower are still derived from the Bergfried of an older castle, which was mentioned for the first time in 1366, in Detmold”, explains the Foundation Fürstliches Residenzschloss Detmold GmbH in a treatise on the history of the building Century, when the noble Bernhard III founded the city of Detmold.
In 1447, at the time of the Soester Feud, the Archbishop of Cologne had the castle and city destroyed by Bohemian mercenaries. A little later, the old castle was partly rebuilt and fortified with a rampart. Already since 1511 it served the lippischen Landesherren as a residence.
The concept of a four-wing system was designed by the architect, Jörg Unkair, who had already realized this during the construction of Neuhaus Palace near Paderborn. Two gables on the right side of the front of the castle and the two front stair towers still carry his manuscript. Later, the Flemish “Steinschneider” Johann Robin installed a Renaissance gallery between the two staircases in the Schloßhof and master builder Kord Tönnies completed the new building of the castle.
“The castle was partially baroqueized only in the 18th century,” explains the foundation, and from 1780 onwards, the fortifications in the entrance area were cleared to create space for the castle square, and in 1982, the castle was entered into the city’s monuments list.