In the early 1960s, Liliesleaf Farm acted as the headquarters for secret gatherings and underground activities, and also played the role of ‘safe-house’ for many leading figures who were apart of the liberation movement of apartheid in South Africa. People from all over the country met here to debate on political and military policies and strategies, and also to discuss the plan of emancipation from the opressive regime.
On 11 July 1963, Liliesleaf Farm underwent a dramatic raid by apartheid police. Every corner of the location was searched and many valuables confiscated, including the masses of liberation struggle documents and plans to overthrow the government. Members were involved in a meeting just as the raid took place, and were caught completely unaware, and were detained by the police.
Today, Liliesleaf is one of South Africa’s foremost, award-winning heritage sites, where the journey to democracy in South Africa is honoured and recounted. Since opening to the public in June 2008, Liliesleaf has attracted thousands of local and international visitors eager to understand and engage with a seminal period in South Africa’s liberation struggle.
“Liliesleaf doesn’t present the usual story about apartheid, or the same stark images we’ve come to expect from exhibitions and museums. This is the deeply inspiring story of a very brave group of men and women who risked all to change the status quo. These people embodied the idealistic Freedom Charter that they were striving to make reality.” read Nicola Beach’s review of Liliesleaf.
Venue: 7 George Avenue, Rivonia, Johannesburg
Time: Mon to Fri 8.30am to 5pm | Sat, Sun & Public Holidays 9am to 4pm
Cost: R140 guided tour | R60 students | R40 pensioners | R40 children 8 to 17 years
Tel: 011 803 7882 / 3 / 4