June 12, 2015 (Source: http://www.focus-fen.net/news)
“Archaeological excavation works at the Great Basilica of Pliska officially started at 9 a.m. on Tuesday. The process of restoration of the temple has officially begun,” Professor Bozhidar Dimitrov, Director of the National Museum of History, announced for FOCUS News Agency, commenting on the financing provided by the Bulgarian Council of Ministers for the archaeological excavations, studies and restoration activities in Pliska.
“Under the Venice Charter, the excavation works should be completed at 100%. Despite the fact that excavation works there have been underway since the end of the nineteenth and during the entire twentieth centuries the Great Basilica remained one non-excavated stain of several hundreds of square meters.
The work starts with the so-called “sacred well”. In the past, many churches had such a well, which are called “ayazmo” in Greek. Usually there is healing water there, which people used against different illnesses,” Mr Dimitrov explained.
“Restoration activities develop cultural and historical tourism,” Professor Bozhidar Dimitrov said.
“The example with Belchin is most eloquent. There were 500,000 visitors there last year. In Kyustendil, for instance, where the fortress was finalised just a couple of weeks ago, there were already 10,000 visitors,” the professor remarked.