Special Correspondent

Take steps to promote heritage walks: Collector

Udhagamandalam: Details pertaining to the most visible heritage building housing the Breeks Memorial Anglo Indian Higher Secondary School, one of the oldest and best known educational institutions in this hill station, will henceforth be more widely known. Thanks to the erection of a heritage board near the building on Tuesday.

The board put up under the aegis of the Indian National Trust for Art, Culture and Heritage (INTACH), the Nilgiris chapter, was sponsored by the Inner Wheel Club of Ootacamund.

The building which is a landmark near Charing Cross is one of the most imposing structures in this hill station. It came into being in 1886 at a cost of Rs. 38,180 and has special architectural features. Some of them have been listed on the board.

It is not only a heritage building with rare features but also bears the name of the first Collector (then Commissioner) of the district James Wilkinson Breeks (1868-72).

The Breeks School which dates back to 1874 is steeped in history and was the outcome of the steps taken by the people to gather subscriptions to raise a memorial for Mr. Breeks in the shape of a school. It was originally part of the present district court complex.

Unveiling the board, the Nilgiris Collector and ex-officio President of the School Archana Patnaik lauded the effort to highlight the glory of the structure and added that steps should be taken to promote heritage walks here.

The Convenor, INTACH, Geetha Srinivasan said that the board was the third in the series being erected by the INTACH with the help of various agencies.

Emphasising the need to cultivate the habit of walking, she said that heritage should be accorded high priority.

Shuba Ramjee, president, Inner Wheel Club of Ootacamund presented a project report.

The headmaster N. Raman welcomed the gathering. Among those present were many old students.