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Kapellen, Belgium

Coordinates: 51°19′N 04°26′E / 51.317°N 4.433°E / 51.317; 4.433
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Town centre
Town centre
Flag of Kapellen
Coat of arms of Kapellen
Location of Kapellen
Kapellen is located in Belgium
Location in Belgium
Location of Kapellen in the province of Antwerp
Coordinates: 51°19′N 04°26′E / 51.317°N 4.433°E / 51.317; 4.433
Country Belgium
CommunityFlemish Community
RegionFlemish Region
 • MayorDirk Van Mechelen (open VLD)
 • Governing party/iesopen VLD, N-VA
 • Total37.22 km2 (14.37 sq mi)
 • Total26,981
 • Density720/km2 (1,900/sq mi)
Postal codes
NIS code
Area codes03

Kapellen (Dutch pronunciation: [kɑˈpɛlə(n)] , old spelling: Cappellen) is a municipality in the Belgian province of Antwerp. The municipality lies in the Campine in the northern part of the province.

Kapellen consists only of the town of Kapellen proper. In 2021, Kapellen had a total population of 27,157. The total area is 37.11 km2.[2] Kapellen consists out of multiple neighbourhoods, Kapellen Center, the eastern part of Putte, Kapellenbos, Hoogboom and Zilverenhoek. A number of neighbourhoods in Kapellen have a residential character and are characterized by their villaparcs, exclusive landhouses, and beautiful castles. Many who flee the always busy town enjoy Kapellen's peaceful nature.

The town's football club is R. Cappellen F.C. and has played at the national level for many years.


The communities that are now part of Kapellen date back to the 13th century. Hoogboom can be found as Hobonia on documents from 1267. Hoghescote, the current center can be seen 10 years after Hoogboom in Ertbrand, which has now become Putte. The Zilverenhoek neighborhood, only a part of Kapellen since 1983, first appeared in 1844 on a cadastral plan.

Since its origin Kapellen has been a part of lordship Ekeren. Since the 13th century, parts of the territory have regularly changed ownership. Eventually, in 1714 the entire lordship Ekeren came under the ownership of one family, one of the lords Salm-Salm. During the French occupation, Kapellen became, in 1795, part of the municipality Stabroek until it, eventually, in 1800, became its own municipality. Since then they have slowly been adding neighborhoods of Ekeren, Hoevenen and Stabroek to the territory of Kapellen. The current municipal borders have been determined since 1983 when the neighborhoods Hoogboom and Zilverenhoek from Ekeren became part of Kapellen.[3]

In comparison to its worldly power, its spiritual power has had a less complex history. The parish of Hoghescote became part of the St. Bernard's Abbey of Hemiksem. Until then the parish depended on the Saint-Lambertus church of Ekeren.

The church of Kapellen is the oldest building in the municipality. Until the 14th century a chapel sufficed to help the people who lived there. The church has been built up and renovated further throughout the ages. The chancel for example dates back to the 14th century while the Transept was built in the 16th century. During the 19th century, the tower and the interior of the church were renovated in with a neogothic look.

Monument for the fallen soldiers.
Monument for the fallen soldiers.

The further history of Kapellen is characterized by periods of growth and poverty. During the Fall of Antwerp Kapellen suffered greatly. All important buildings and 90% of all houses were destroyed. During the Twelve Years' Truce there was a short resurgence of the municipality until 1623, when the plague raged. The real resurgence had to wait until 1674 when the church was rebuilt.

All this abruptly ended with the start of World War I. The forced service for the German army and the Spanish flu caused many deaths. After the war, there was a brief recovery period until 1930, when a crisis fell over the municipality. Recovery had to wait until after World War II. The municipality Kapellen was freed on 4 October 1944 by the Canadian battalion Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal.[4]


Evolution of the population[edit]

19th century[edit]

Year 1806 1816 1830 1846 1856 1866 1876 1880 1890
Population 913 903 1445 2504 2453 2760 3031 3061 3489
Growth −1.10% +60.02% +73.29% −2.04% +12.52% +9.82% +0.99% +13.98%
Results of the census on 31 December

20th century until the reorganization of municipalities[edit]

Year 1900 1910 1920 1930 1947 1961 1970 1980 1982
Population 4072 5282 6291 7926 9680 11.474 13.352 14.304 14.648
Growth +16.71% +29.72% +19.10% +25.99% +22.13% +18.53% +16.37% +7.13% +2.40%
Results census on 31 December until 1970 + 1 January 1980 + 31 December 1982

After the reorganization of municipalities[edit]

Year 1983 1985 1990 1995 2000 2005 2006 2007
Population 22.471 22.549 23.977 25.290 25.671 25.975 25.948 26.104
Growth +53.41% +0.35% +6.33% +5.48% +1.51% +1.18% −0.10% +0.60%
Population on January 1 – Source: NIS
Year 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 2017 2018 2019
Population 26.410 26.423 26.434 26.532 26.483 26.529 26.642 26.745 26.750 26.771 26.850
Growth +1.17% +0.05% +0.04% +0.37% −0.18% +0.17% +0.43% +0.39% +0.02% +0.08% +0.30%
Population on January 1 – Source: NIS + municipality Kapellen (2010–2015)



In 1759 a cobblestone road was built between Merksem and Kapellen. These days this (no longer cobblestone) road is known as the Kapelsesteenweg (on the territory of Ekeren and Brasschaat) or the Antwerpsesteenweg (on the territory of Kapellen). In 1853 the railroad Antwerp-Rotterdam was built. Thanks to this railroad the first steam powered train could run through Kapellen railway station in 1854. Because of the railroad connection many rich people from Antwerp decided to build villas in the municipality. The local railways reached Kapellen on 31 July 1927 and the tram was extended to the border of Putte on 1 December 1928.[5] The level crossing of the tram and the railroad was there for just short period of time. On 1 March 1934 the railway connection between Hoevenen and Kapellen is opened and from 1 February 1938 forward trams between Antwerp and Putte rode through Hoevenen. (Line 72, between 1 September 1936 and 1 February 1938 no passenger trams rode between Kapellen and Putte). Since 31 August 1936 the tram from Merksem was limited to just before the railroad crossing (line 65). On 26 May 1967 the last tram rode through Kapellen, as line 65.

Famous inhabitants[edit]


  1. ^ "Bevolking per gemeente op 1 januari 2020". Statbel.
  2. ^ "Bevolking per statistische sector - Sector 11023". Statistics Belgium. Retrieved 10 May 2022.
  3. ^ Bruno Verbergt, Ik ben van Ekeren. Ekeren-Hoogboom. Hoe een deel van Ekeren niet met Antwerpen fuseerde in 1983 (CC Ekeren, 23 mei 2013)
  4. ^ "Kapellen herdenkt bevrijding". Nieuwsblad.
  5. ^ Rail Atlas Vicinal, Uitgever: Rail memories. Door Stefan Justens & Dick van der Spek

External links[edit]