Introduction

The conservation of Ganish is a part of a larger process of heritage conservation and social development in the Northern Areas of Pakistan, initiated by the Aga Khan Trust for Culture (AKTC) through its Historic Cities Support Programme, and implemented with the help of the Aga Khan Cultural Service, Pakistan (AKCS-P). Begun in 1989 with the project for the conservation and re-use of the Baltit Fort, the programme expanded to include environmental and heritage conservation and development in Karimabad, around the Fort. It spread in varying forms to several other settlements in the vicinity, including Aliabad, Altit, Ganish, Chumarkhun, Gulmit etc., and has now expanded beyond the Hunza and Gilgit regions to Baltistan and its historic sites of Shigar, Khaplu and Skardu.

The Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (NORAD) has played the leading role in providing financial assistance for Ganish conservation efforts, in line with their earlier assistance for the rehabilitation work in Karimabad. The Embassy of Spain has also contributed funds for selected rehabilitation projects. The Aga Khan Trust of Culture expresses its gratitude for the important moral and financial support received, which enabled AKCS-P to maintain a continuous stream of projects and technical assistance to the local communities.