CONVENT U

CONVENT U

Beautiful art nouveau convent with seemingly endless corridors, beautiful stained glass windows and impressive marble staircases…


CHAPELLE DE LA ROSE

CHAPELLE DE LA ROSE

At the end of the 13th century a convent was erected on the instructions of a noble lady who lived in this town. The convent at the same time served as a hospital and a monastery for the Augustinian sisters, who were responsible for the care of the sick. Barring a short interruption at the time of the French Revolution, they continued to do so until the early 1980s. The hospital had since been transformed into a nursing home. After the sisters’ departure, the retirement home was taken over by the local government.

The showpiece of the monastery was this late Gothic chapel, founded in the early 17th century. For a long time it was a place of pilgrimage for the cure of intestinal disorders. During a fire in the early 2000s, part of the monastery was destroyed, but fortunately the chapel was spared. In its current state, the chapel consists of two parts: the original chapel, constructed in late Gothic style from brick and bluestone. An extension in neoclassical style, dating from the mid-19th century, formed a physical connection between the existing chapel and the hospital, to give patients the opportunity to attend the worship services from the balcony. At the back of the chapel, on the left, you can still see the old refectory, also built in brick and blue stone with a beautiful vintage facade from the early 17th century.


CHARLIES CHAPEL

CHARLIES CHAPEL

This single-aisled brick chapel in honor of Our Lady of Seven Woes was built in 1883 in neo-gothic style. It is located on the castle domain of Chateau Jumanji and served as a neighborhood chapel and starting point for the district procession. The chapel contains a three-sided choir with a painted wooden altar and with a polychrome statue of Our Lady of Seven Woees. Behind the iron closing gate is a ship with benches. On the walls; white painted images of saints on baroque consoles with angel figures including Saint Joseph, Saint Anthony and Saint Margaret. Although it is listed as heritage, the chapel is in a particularly deplorable condition and there are noticeable cracks in the walls and multiple subsidence. Since the chapel was opened, the situation has only deteriorated visibly. Several statues were destroyed by vandalism. As part of the renovation work on the manor, the chapel has already been emptied in light of the pending renovation…


BLUE CHRIST CHURCH

BLUE CHRIST CHURCH

This neo-Gothic parish church was built in the early 1880s. The brick structure was erected in the form of a cross basilica (a cross church set up as a basilica, which means that the church building has side aisles lower than the middle aisle and that the central aisle above the side aisles is provided with a row of windows). The interior of the church was also neo-Gothic and included a 16th century bluestone baptismal font in Gothic style. Little is left of the original pump and splendor today. Attempts to restore the church were not successful. In 2015, the organ pipes of the valuable 16th century organ were stolen to be sold for scrap…


BLUE CHRIST CHURCH

BLUE CHRIST CHURCH

This neo-Gothic parish church was built in the early 1880s. The brick structure was erected in the form of a cross basilica (a cross church set up as a basilica, which means that the church building has side aisles lower than the middle aisle and that the central aisle above the side aisles is provided with a row of windows). The interior of the church was also neo-Gothic and included a 16th century bluestone baptismal font in Gothic style. Little is left of the original pump and splendor today. Attempts to restore the church were not successful. In 2015, the organ pipes of the valuable 16th century organ were stolen to be sold for scrap…


ALIEN CHURCH

ALIEN CHURCH

The village in which this peculiar little church is located was completely destroyed during the First World War and was initially not supposed to be rebuilt. Thanks to the tenacity of the inhabitants, who formed a close community, the authorities reverted this decision and the reconstruction of the village was made possible. During the Second World War, however, the village was again hit by fate … But yet again the town was reconstructed. The church was designed by architect MQ. The building was completely erected in reinforced concrete and has no visible walls, but seems to consist merely of the roof construction that runs down to the ground. Almost the whole structure was pierced by square openings, which were covered with stained-glass windows in green and purple hues, which provide a special and colorful light…


ALIEN CHURCH

ALIEN CHURCH

The village in which this peculiar little church is located was completely destroyed during the First World War and was initially not supposed to be rebuilt. Thanks to the tenacity of the inhabitants, who formed a close community, the authorities reverted this decision and the reconstruction of the village was made possible. During the Second World War, however, the village was again hit by fate … But yet again the town was reconstructed. The church was designed by architect MQ. The building was completely erected in reinforced concrete and has no visible walls, but seems to consist merely of the roof construction that runs down to the ground. Almost the whole structure was pierced by square openings, which were covered with stained-glass windows in green and purple hues, which provide a special and colorful light…


BYZANTIUM

BYZANTIUM

The economic expansion in the first half of the 19th century, and in particular the construction of a new railway line, led to spectacular population growth in this neighborhood. The parish chapel, where until then the worship services for this parish were held, quickly became too small for the 18,000-soul parish. There was a need for a new, spacious church. The city architect drew the plans, but after disagreement about the stability they were carried out in a simplified form by the city’s building master. The works started in the mid-1850s. Thirteen years later, the church was inaugurated, even though she was unfinished at that moment and would remain so. The tower that had to crown the church on the west side never came.

The style of the church, the so-called ‘Rundbogenstil’, is eclectic with a dominance of Romanesque and Gothic elements. The round arch windows have Romanesque design and Gothic tracery. Groundbreaking in ecclesiastical architecture is the use of cast iron for the main ribs and the three-step arches. The biggest innovation in this is the roof span with two iron polonceauspants, per bay. This roof truss is made up of two under-stressed triangular beams, which are connected by a drawbar. The interior is also predominantly neo-Roman with neo-Gothic decorative elements. The monumental murals, which took more time to paint than the construction of the church itself, give this spectacularly beautiful church an oriental-Byzantine atmosphere.

After having fallen in disuse almost two decades ago, the city has now decided to sell the church to a project developer. Since the whole church and its interior are protected as cultural heritage, the possibilities for another use of the building are rather limited…


EGLISE DES CAUSES DESESPERES

EGLISE DES CAUSES DESESPERES

The “church of desperate causes” is a truely appropriate ‘urbex’ name for this desecrated church. The building, which was once so important for this small community, is in a very lamentable condition. It was not for naught that it was declared inaccessible by the fire brigade. It feels like you might get some debris  on your head at any give moment. Since 2010 there have been rumors that the church would be demolished, but by mid-2018 it is still deteriorating. The church was built in Romanesque style in 1921 for the ever-growing miners’ population, mainly from Flanders.


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