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Report - - Fort de la Chartreuse, Liege, Belgium, April 2018 | European and International Sites | 28DaysLater.co.uk

Report - Fort de la Chartreuse, Liege, Belgium, April 2018



HughieD

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#1
1. The History
Fort de la Chartreuse is built in the Wallonian city of Liege on a strategic site that dominates the valley of the Meuse, which had been occupied by a Carthusian (Ordre des Chartreux) monastery until the French Revolution. The 1815 Congress of Vienna saw the former principality of Liège ceded to the Netherlands (Belgium had yet to be founded). Two years later in 1817 construction was commenced by the Dutch build a new fort, even more imposing than the previous ones, naming it “Fort Chartreuse” after the monastery of the Carthusian Order which occupied the site of the fourteenth century to the Liège Revolution. It was finished five year’s later in 1823. However, during the Belgian revolution in 1830, the large fortification was taken over by Belgian forces who then used the space as a barracks.

The fort ceased operations as a fortification by the military as far back as 1891 and was thereafter used as a barracks. When World War I broke out with the Battle of Liège on August 5th, 1914 saw the Germans invading the city. The fort fell two days later on the 16th, but only after the battle had turned into a siege with protracted bombardment. From 1914 to 1918 the Germans used it as a prison for some of the 4,000 Belgians they had captured after the battle. In total 49 people were executed on site and buried, and a memorial stands at the main gate in their honour. When Germany agreed to an armistice in 1918 Liège returned to Belgian control and the fort was again used as a barracks.

Chartreuse Old 1
by HughieDW, on Flickr

After the onset of World War II and Belgium surrendered to the Germans on May 28th 1940, Fort de la Chartreuse yet again became a prison for the Germans to hold Belgian prisoners of war.

When the Allies retook Liege from the Germans in 1944 it was used by the Americans as a military hospital until the end of the war. It became less and less useful to the Ministry of National Defence and was demilitarized in 1981. The last military left the old fort in 1988.

2. The Explore
Set off for the 40-mibute drive to the fort with high expectations. I knew the site was a big one and would take several hours to look rounds. Having negotiated Liege’s one-way system rocked up at the fort which was a walk-in on this rather dull and over-cast April morn. Two hours later I’d still not really seen all of the site. The place is pretty stripped bare and trashed but there is enough of interest to merit a visit. It is a very, very big site with loads of buildings, corridors and rooms. Didn’t see a soul exploring the fort’s various buildings, just the odd dog walker. I went back to the fort the following evening as we happened to be in Liege a stones-throw away from the fort hence I managed to get a far superior set of pictures of the forts main barracks bathed in sunshine.

3. The Pictures

Main gate to the heart of the Fort:

img6207
by HughieDW, on Flickr

And down the path:

img6208
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Nature getting everywhere:

img6209
by HughieDW, on Flickr

First up – building ‘A2’:

img6210
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6215
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6216
by HughieDW, on Flickr

And on to “A1”:

Chateurse 01
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Tunnel to the left of Le “U”:

img6235
by HughieDW, on Flickr

And another…

img6301
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6289
by HughieDW, on Flickr
Externals of the “U”:

img6452
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6451
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6449
by HughieDW, on Flickr

La Lys:

img6445
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6443
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6442
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6438
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Inside the Le “U”:

img6238
by HughieDW, on Flickr

So many corridors:

img6253
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6243
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6268
by HughieDW, on Flickr

So many rooms:
img6244
by HughieDW, on Flickr

And lots of staircases:

img6256
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6258
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Chateurse 02
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Some parts gone:

img6249
by HughieDW, on Flickr

img6266
by HughieDW, on Flickr

View over A2 and A1:

img6272
by HughieDW, on Flickr

Round the back:

img6459bw
by HughieDW, on Flickr
 

HughieD

28DL Regular User
Regular User
#2

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