Featured Articles

Issue 15 - Spring 2016


Welcome to the Spring edition of our newsletter! After a short break we are back with updates on the N/P and Secondary Education Councils, details of new projects supported by the Community Fund and various updates on health and safety issues. Why not check out our regular column, "Love Laeken" and find out about what the Dreve Sainte Anne looked like before it became the busy street it is today!

On the services front, remember that the first enrolment phase for transport closes on 31 May 2016. Enrolments for extra-curricular activities will open on 1 June so keep checking the website for details of the activites. You should also have received details about the upcoming Performing Arts Day via email - for those of you who are wondering what Periscolaire involves, this is an excellent opportunity to come and see!

Finally, you should have received detils via email about this year's Somerfesto. The Somerfesto Committee has organised a wide range of exciting activities for kids of all ages to enjoy. Please volunteer to help make it the most successful school party ever! 

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King Leopold I, the first King of the Belgians, was responsible for having the Church of Our Lady of Laeken (Notre dame de Laeken) and associated Royal Crypt built. In doing so, Leopold I was honouring his second wife – Queen Louise-Marie – who had, before she died, expressed the wish to be buried in Laeken. She died in 1850. Work began in 1854, under the architect Joseph Poelaert. However, he built only the core part of the building before devoting himself to his magnum opus – the imposing Palais de Justice, 1866. The church was consecrated in August, 1872. However, as this postcard shows, the church was not quite finished. This was caused by funding problems and difficulties with the frangible quality of some of the stonework, which necessitated costly repairs.The church was completed in 1907 by the architect Friedrich von Schmidt. He built the porch, the central bell tower and the façade. The bell tower is reputed to be the highest in Belgium.



Drève Sainte-Anne directly connects the earlier church with the Chapelle Sainte-Anne and its fountain, reputed to have healing powers.The church replaced an earlier medieval church, which had been built around 1275. It was demolished in 1904, except for its “Gothic choir” which can still be seen in Laeken Cemetery, just behind “the Thinker” sculpture.

According to the Royal Family’s website, the Royal Crypt is the burial place of all reigning Belgian Sovereigns and their wives, as well as certain members of the Belgian Royal Family.


The Crypt is accessible to the public every Sunday afternoon, as well as on:


17 February   death of King Albert I
31 July   death of King Baudouin
29 August   death of Queen Astrid
25 September   death of King Leopold III
1 November   All Saints Day
15 November   "Koningsfeest - Fête du Roi"
29 November   death of Prince Alexander
5 December   death of Queen Fabiola


 Here is a more recent picture:


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