Fort De Roovere was part of the West Brabant Dutch Water Line. It is an earthen fort that goes through a wall (the Ligneweg) and is connected to Fort Pinssen. The fort is open from the ‘back’, and the ‘front’ consists of two bastions. The fort has a dry moat and the banks are overgrown with trees. In 1747, during the Austrian War of Succession (1740–1748) the fort was under siege by the French. This siege has been extensively documented. Eventually, the fortress Bergen op Zoom fell and the siege was abandoned.

Over the years, the de Roovere fort has fallen into major disrepair. It has only recently been restored through contributions. In addition, a bridge was built to access the fort across its moat. The designers felt it would be inappropriate to build a bridge over the moat, so instead, they decided to construct a partially submerged bridge, rendering it practically invisible. The bridge has taken on the name 'The Moses Bridge,' as it appears to have divided the moat's waters. This design allows people to cross virtually undetected at water level: only a few bobbing heads are usually visible. Its construction is entirely of wood waterproofed with foil.

A foundation has been established, Friends of Fort de Roovere, whose goal is to make sure the fort is not forgotten. In the middle of 2010, extensive renovation of the fort began with the removal of the undergrowth and a deepening of the old moat so that the fort could be more easily recognizable as such. The clearing of the area led to many local protests. Remarkably, very little to no interest was paid toarcheological research as there should be traces of the French siege nearby. Local amateurs with metal detectors still regularly findcannonballs there, which must have come from the siege.

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Founded: 1628
Category: Castles and fortifications in Netherlands

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Justin van Schaick (6 months ago)
Site of an old Dutch fort that was an important part of the Dutch defense lines called the "Waterlinie", meant to keep invading armies out of the country using a system of flooding to halt their advance. It's not an actual structure; just a earthen construction. It might have had wooden barracks at some point but they are gone now. A single cannon remains. There has been some reconstruction going on to restore the earth walls in their former state and deepen the moats. There's a modern observation tower constructed of wood and steel that offers a nice view of the area. Unfortunately not accessible for the disabled (stairs). Free parking. Some short walking trails in the area. Cafe with patio at the fort.
Patrice Solyomvary (6 months ago)
Very nice, almost hidden old fortress. We accidentally found out about it during our visit of the extremely beautiful village of Tholen. They are still renovating a lot and actually building some kind of tower. Of course, what we really enjoyed was walking through the water, as a matter of speach. Amazingly build walk-through, never seen anything like it. Definitely worth a visit if you are in or around Tholen.
Koert Grever (10 months ago)
The new tower is truly spectacular and worth a visit !
Katka Kretka (12 months ago)
Very pretty place to be, with a great bridge and a tower for good view.. and great plans for the future
Paulo Afonso (13 months ago)
One can call a hidden beauty, as you approach the area is not quite evident at first glance. I went on a 15 min bike trip last week on a beautiful spring sunny Sunday. It’s an astonishing landmark proof of men and nature at work in harmony. Probably still underrated, all I can say is that the pictures don’t quite describe the experience vividly. From the top of the tower you have an amazing peripheral view of your surroundings and the fort itself. There is a café to serve visitors and safe bring along children. The history describing the maps on the location are in dutch, but perhpaps there are translation on line. Overall... an amazing destination to visit.
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The Porta Nigra (Latin for black gate) is the largest Roman city gate north of the Alps. It is designated as part of the Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St. Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier UNESCO World Heritage Site. The name Porta Nigra originated in the Middle Ages due to the darkened colour of its stone; the original Roman name has not been preserved. Locals commonly refer to the Porta Nigra simply as Porta.

The Porta Nigra was built in grey sandstone between 186 and 200 AD. The original gate consisted of two four-storied towers, projecting as near semicircles on the outer side. A narrow courtyard separated the two gate openings on either side. For unknown reasons, however, the construction of the gate remained unfinished. For example, the stones at the northern (outer) side of the gate were never abraded, and the protruding stones would have made it impossible to install movable gates. Nonetheless, the gate was used for several centuries until the end of the Roman era in Trier.

In Roman times, the Porta Nigra was part of a system of four city gates, one of which stood at each side of the roughly rectangular Roman city. The Porta Nigra guarded the northern entry to the Roman city, while the Porta Alba (White Gate) was built in the east, the Porta Media (Middle Gate) in the south, and the Porta Inclyta (Famous Gate) in the west, next to the Roman bridge across the Moselle. The gates stood at the ends of the two main streets of the Roman Trier, one of which led north-south and the other east-west. Of these gates, only the Porta Nigra still exists today.

In the early Middle Ages the Roman city gates were no longer used for their original function and their stones were taken and reused for other buildings. Also iron and lead braces were broken out of the walls of the Porta Nigra for reuse. Traces of this destruction are still clearly visible on the north side of the gate.

After 1028, the Greek monk Simeon lived as a hermit in the ruins of the Porta Nigra. After his death (1035) and sanctification, the Simeonstift monastery was built next to the Porta Nigra to honor him. Saving it from further destruction, the Porta Nigra was transformed into a church: The inner court of the gate was roofed and intermediate ceilings were inserted. The two middle storeys of the former gate were converted into church naves: the upper storey being for the monks and the lower storey for the general public. The ground floor with the large gates was sealed, and a large outside staircase was constructed alongside the south side (the town side) of the gate, up to the lower storey of the church. A small staircase led further up to the upper storey. The church rooms were accessible through former windows of the western tower of the Porta Nigra that were enlarged to become entrance doors (still visible today). The top floor of the western tower was used as church tower, the eastern tower was leveled, and an apse added at its east side. An additional gate - the much smaller Simeon Gate - was built adjacent to the East side of the Porta Nigra and served as a city gate in medieval times.

In 1802 Napoleon Bonaparte dissolved the church in the Porta Nigra and the monastery beside it, along with the vast majority of Trier"s numerous churches and monasteries. On his visit to Trier in 1804, Napoleon ordered that the Porta Nigra be converted back to its Roman form. Only the apse was kept; but the eastern tower was not rebuilt to its original height. Local legend has it that Napoleon originally wanted to completely tear down the church, but locals convinced him that the church had actually been a Gaulish festival hall before being turned into a church. Another version of the story is that they told him about its Roman origins, persuading him to convert the gate back to its original form.

In 1986 the Porta Nigra was designated a World Heritage Site, along with other Roman monuments in Trier and its surroundings. The modern appearance of the Porta Nigra goes back almost unchanged to the reconstruction ordered by Napoleon. At the south side of the Porta Nigra, remains of Roman columns line the last 100 m of the street leading to the gate. Positioned where they had stood in Roman times, they give a slight impression of the aspect of the original Roman street that was lined with colonnades. The Porta Nigra, including the upper floors, is open to visitors.