HOF TER WELLE
Castle Hof Ter Welle is the oldest civic building in the city of Beveren. Already in the 13th century there was a wooden building on this spot. This building was much smaller then the current castle. Later on, probably in the middle of the 14th century, it was replaced by a stone construction. During the next centuries it became bigger and was enlarged several times. The last alternation was done in 1751 when the baroque chapel was added. Vassal Wautier de Welle was the first owner of the castle. From the 15th century it was occupied by the families Vilain, Van Pottelberghe, del Plano and Foulon d'Anteville. Lady Anne Francoise Piers bought the domain in 1723 and she founded a school for poor and orphaned children in the castle. In 1727 she establish the congregation of O.-L.- Vrouw Presentatie. The congregation moves to a new place in 1881. The sisterhood stays also on the castle and the last seven sisters have to leave the castle in 1988 because the castle was in such a bad shape that it was simply too dangerous to stay in the castle. The castle became a protected monument in 1974. It is now property of the city and they are doing major restorations. The outside is already beautifully restored. The inside is still stripped down and lots of work needs to be done before it will be back in all its glory. I visited the castle on open monument day 2001. It will probably stay closed now until the restorations are done. You can find the castle the first street on the left after you passed the hospital in Beveren or on your right just before the hospital depending from where you are coming.