Hellevoetsluis

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Hellevoetsluis (About this sound pronunciation ) (population: 30,164 in 2009) is a small village and municipality on Voorne-Putten Island in the western Netherlands, in the province of South Holland. The municipality covers an area of 46.14 km² (17.81 mile²) of which 14.57 km² (5.63 mile²) is water and it includes the population centres Nieuw-Helvoet, and Nieuwenhoorn, both former municipalities.

Hellevoetsluis is located on the Haringvliet with the sea, beach and dunes close by, on the extreme southern edge of the Rijnmond and Europoort areas, close to the broad Zeeland landscape. The name translates as "lock at the foot of the Helle". The Helle was a small local river which disappeared over time.

Contents

History

The history of Hellevoetsluis has always been connected with water. During the time of the United Provinces Hellevoetsluis was the naval port of the Admiralty of de Maze (Rotterdam) and could accommodate an entire fleet within a special land-enclosed fortress with harbour and dockyard facilities, accessible through a canal. Thanks to its strategic situation the town grew from the beginning of the 17th century to be the homeport for the Dutch war fleet. In later years the port was fortified more and more and Hellevoetsluis therefore became a unique combination of fortified town and naval port. The Admirals Maarten Tromp, Michiel de Ruyter and Piet Heyn had their home base here and in 1688 during the Glorious Revolution William III of Orange's invasion fleet departed from the port.

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