Industrial Heritage Networks

The Museum Industriekultur Wuppertal strives for close networking with local, regional and international players in industrial culture and is committed to the preservation, research and presentation of the material heritage of industrial culture in many ways. Of the many cooperation partners with whom we work, the following networks are particularly worthy of mention.

ERIH - European Route of Industrial Heritage

ERIH, the European Route of Industrial Heritage, is the tourism information network of industrial heritage in Europe. The network is run by the ERIH association, which has more than 300 members in 30 countries. Over 100 member sites are Anchor Points, sites of exceptional historical importance in terms of industrial heritage which also offer a high quality visitor experience. Regional Routes introduce in more detail the industrial history of landscapes, which were particularly influenced by industrialisation. In total we present over 2,200 sites worth visiting on our website from all European countries. All sites are assigned to one or more of 16 European Theme Routes, which represent branches of industry and show the variety and - together with almost 240 biographies - the interlinkages of European industrial history and their common roots. The site presentations are supplemented by articles on the industrial history of the countries of Europe as well as on the development of branches of industry which form the theme routes. ERIH is certified as a "Cultural Route of the Council of Europe”.


Bergisches Land Industrial Culture Network Association

The Bergisches Land Industrial Culture Network Association would like to contribute to raising awareness of the extremely charming industrial-cultural landscape of the Bergisches Land. In this way, the industrial tourism potential of the region should also be better appreciated.

The network sees itself as a central contact point for all those interested in the history and present of the Bergisches Land as an industrial and cultural landscape. It promotes the coordination of the strengths and experiences of scholars and private individuals who are committed to industrial monuments in private ownership or who are active (also on a voluntary basis) in museums or at public institutions such as the industrial museums of the cities and the Landschaftsverband Rheinland (LVR). All these institutions can be presented and used more effectively in a network. For it is only in the overall view that connections become clear and the significance of even smaller or barely developed stations can be experienced. The network supports the research and documentation of sites in the Bergisches Land and neighbouring areas that are relevant to industrial history, the preparation of sites for industrial tourism purposes and the development of programmes. The museums represented in the Bergisches Land Industrial Heritage Network preserve and present the diverse industrial and technological history of this region.



At seven authentic sites, the LVR-Industriemuseum relates the moving story of industrialisation along the Rhine and the Ruhr and how this work and daily grind formed the people – and what’s more where all this actually took place: in the former factories. When the drive belts whirr, the furnaces glow and the hammers pound, one feels the legacy of a region in which once the heart of textiles, paper, iron and steel used to beat. 

In addition to the locations in Oberhausen, Ratingen, Solingen, Bergisch Gladbach, Engelskirchen and Euskirchen, the head office in Oberhausen maintains the central collection depot in the Peter Behrens Building.



South Westphalia with the Sauerland, Siegerland-Wittgenstein and the Märkische Region is one of the strongest and most sustainable, but also oldest industrial regions in Europe. The abundance of forests, water and ore in this low mountain landscape favoured the development of WasserEisenLand with its unique industrial culture and history. Mines, ironworks, wire drawing mills, cutlery and needle factories, forge hammers, sheet metal rolling mills, foundries, museum railways and other technological experiences can be marvelled at in over 50 original settings, often also in demonstration operation. These impressive monuments and museums of technology are embedded in a holiday landscape whose reservoirs, mountain streams, hiking trails, cycle paths and castles form the backdrop to modern medium-sized industry. The cultural route "Eisenstraße Südwestfalen" invites you on a journey through WasserEisenLand.


Milling Region Rhineland

The project "Mühlenregion Rheinland - zwischen Erft, Wupper und Sieg" (Rhineland Mill Region - between Erft, Wupper and Sieg) aims to contribute to the preservation of an important component of the Rhineland cultural landscape and cultural heritage: windmills, watermills, hammers and hydroelectric power plants have shaped the landscape and the lives of the people in our region for centuries. The project participants are the Landschaftsverband Rheinland (LVR), the Rhein-Erft-Kreis, the Rheinisch-Bergischer Kreis, the Rhein-Sieg-Kreis, the Oberbergischer Kreis, the Rheinisches Mühlen-Dokumentationszentrum (RMDZ), the Naturpark Bergisches Land and the Rheinischer Verein für Denkmalpflege und Landschaftsschutz (RVDL).


Rhine Industrial Route

The Rhine Industrial Route brings industrial culture to life along the Rhine between Bonn and Wesel. It shows an industrial heartland in the middle of Europe. The Rhine as a transport artery has had a decisive influence on industry and life on its banks and has given rise to a unique, exciting industrial landscape. In addition to the famous Rhine bridges in Cologne and Düsseldorf and the large harbour facilities of Krefeld and Duisburg, the Rhine region offers other, in part unknown, industrial history highlights: for example, the first factory on the continent was built in Ratingen, the first railway in West Germany connected Elberfeld and Düsseldorf, and the development of the petrol engine did not take place in Stuttgart or Detroit, but in Cologne. The origins of fine paper production near Bergisch Gladbach stand alongside the huge open-cast mines at Garzweiler, as does the early industrial centre of Wuppertal.