The motto of the Open Monument Day 2020 “The Monument: Remember. Preserve. Rethink” refers to an important field of work in architecture: the reactivation of historical buildings.

Since the 16th century the Tönnishof used to be a farmhouse. Back in 1884 the farmer couple Dietrich Wilhelm and Elsa Tönnis build a modern, square courtyard complex for the stables, barns and the equipment, as well as a villa connected in the axis of the square as a stately home. The Tönnishof survived the World War I and II without damages. It was the construction of the new train line that sealed the fate of the complex. The high railroad embankment separated the farmland from the courtyard and required the partial demolition of the complex. As a result the last farmer, Günter Tönnis, decided to give up and sell the Tönnishof in 1977. In 1978, Prof. Eckhard Gerber first purchased the neo-classical style villa, which he had restored and has used since then as a residential building and an architectural office with currently 110 employees.

On September 13, 2020, Prof. Eckhard Gerber and his wife, the restorer Anngrit Gerber, will give a tour at the Tönnishof.