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Director of the porcelain collection Dr Ulrich Pietsch told the Antiques Trade Gazette that the porcelain rooms, recently restored at a cost of €7m, would reopen to the public on October 6, “although we still have serious problems with the water”, he said. The opening will be preceded on the night of October 5 by a gala fund-raising dinner hosted by Dutch dealer Clemens Vanderven, with guests including Oriental dealer Jorge Welsh and real estate empress Anita Gray.

Mr Vanderven said that the salvation of the porcelain rooms, which occupied the lower floors of the Zwinger, was due to the heroic efforts of the Dresden fire brigade who kept the world’s largest collection of Meissen above the water level.

“The Elbe had risen by eight metres, but the water was only up to one foot deep in the museum,” said Mr Vanderven. The porcelain survived unscathed, along with the vast majority of the other 20,000 art works, although there was some water damage to the large sculpture that could not be moved from the Palace cellars. There is also concern that the foundations of the picture gallery, part of the Zwinger adjacent to the river Elbe, could have been destabilised by the flooding.