A unique “Heritage Walk” was held through the Ghodbunder Fort on Saturday. Organised by architects Sapna Lakhe and Shwetambari Shinde under the aegis of Sankraman Design Studio which is conducting the restoration work. The heritage walk witnessed the active participation of heritage enthusiasts and fort lovers. Apart from showcasing the history of the fort, the purpose of the heritage walk was to highlight the process involving heritage conservation.
“We had a live demonstration of the preparation of lime mortar - an important material used for strengthening and finishing the walls. The walk concluded with an interactive session regarding steps and methods of a heritage conservation project,” said Lakhe.
The restoration, conservation and beautification work of the fort and its precincts are in the advanced stages and is likely to be completed in 2023. The Ghodbunder Fort has been adopted by the civic administration under the government’s ‘Maharashtra Vaibhav Protected Monuments Adoption Scheme’ to help protect and preserve historical monuments.
Notably, the state department of cultural affairs has granted heritage structure status to eight monuments in the state, including the Ghodbunder Fort, paving the way for their adoption by the respective civic bodies. Originally named Cacabe de Tanna, the Ghodbunder Fort was built in 1730 by the Portuguese who had settled in this region in 1530. The territory and fort remained under the rule of the Portuguese until 1737. Despite several attempts, the Maratha warriors failed to capture the fortress, but eventually besieged the Fort and successfully occupied it by defeating the Portuguese army in the year 1737. There is also an ancient church in the vicinity of the fort which was founded by the Portuguese.