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Fedje within Hordaland
|• Mayor (2007)||Kristin Handeland (Ap)|
|• Total||9 km2 (3 sq mi)|
|• Land||9 km2 (3 sq mi)|
|Area rank||431 in Norway|
|• Rank||423 in Norway|
|• Density||66/km2 (170/sq mi)|
|• Change (10 years)||-11.3 %|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
|ISO 3166 code||NO-1265|
|Official language form||Nynorsk|
|Source: Statistics Norway.|
The main island of Fedje is surrounded by about 125 smaller islands and rocks mostly north of the main island, and the name Fedje applies both to the main island, and to all the islands and rocks as a whole. Fedje is an island, covering a total area of about 7.4 square kilometres. Counting the main island and the smaller islands, the area is about 9.4 square kilometres. It has a population of approximately 600 people. The traditional economic activity is fishing.
The Old Norse form of the name was Feðjar, closely related to gotic faþa, "fence", "wall", here in the meaning row of islands or archipelago, separating the inshore waters from the ocean.
There are traces of human activity on Fedje from as long as 4,000 years ago. In the 18th century, Fedje was an important trading place, with the small island Kræmmerholmen being the location where the trading took place. Kræmmerholmen was reopened in 1991, and was a restaurant/hotel/museum area, but closed in September 2008. Fedje was previously a substantial producer of peat. The peat led to the construction of a railway. The railway was given up together with the peat industry in 1920.
During the Second World War Fedje was occupied by over 300 German soldiers. There are still remains of the German cannons and bunkers all over the island, especially in the western part close to the traffic station, which is actually built on the remains of a German radar station.
In February 1945 the German submarine U-864 was sunk by British naval forces outside western Fedje. The only instance in history of a submarine being sunk by another sub. The U-boat was, unfortunately for the environment, loaded with 70 tons of mercury. The mercury, which was being shipped to Japan, is now resting on the bottom of the North Sea 150 metres below the surface, as a potential environmental disaster like the Minamata disaster in Japan, in the 1960s. In 2009 it was decided to raise the submarine.
On 12 January 2007, M/V Server sunk outside Fedje. The ship leaked oil and caused major environmental damage. But due to intensive efforts to clean the coves and beaches, very few traces can be found today.
The highest point on Fedje is the 42-meter-high hill called Fedjebjørnen. The largest lake is Storevatnet.
The best known smaller island is called Holmengrå. Holmengrå has a 35-metre tall lighthouse. In the southern part of Fedje which is called Stormark, there is a lighthouse called Hellisøy fyr, maybe the most famous feature of Fedje. Hellisøy fyr was built in 1855, and is 32.3 metres tall, painted red and white. Fedje travel information
The population of the island community is decreasing due to the high percentage of people over 60 years (25% as of 1 January 2003), and because many people decide to move from the island, many because of the lack of work. Most of the people live on the lagoon-like northern part of the island, in the vicinity of the grocery shop, the church and the ferry. Fedje is inhabited by many fishermen and whalers, but the last fishingboat/whaler was sold from the island January 2009.
The main sporting activity on Fedje is football, which can be played on the football grounds in the eastern part of the island. The football ground is also the home ground of the local football team called Fedje A-lag. The club is currently playing in the Norwegian 6th division. Swimming is also popular, as there is a beautiful beach located on Fedje, which is to be found in the centre of the island on the shoreline of Lake Husavatnet. The water is clean and brackish, as a freshwater spring runs out in the vicinity of the beach.
There is an important traffic-station on Fedje. The station surveils the coastal sea-traffic. The island is supplied with power, telephone and internet cables from an underwater cordless router to the mainland. A ferry, crossing 20 times a day, connects Fedje to the mainland. The voyage lasts for about 30 minutes. Fedje is about a 1 hour 40 minute drive (including a 30-minute ferry voyage) from the city of Bergen.
- "Personnemningar til stadnamn i Noreg" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Fedje.|
|Look up Fedje in Wiktionary, the free dictionary.|
- Municipal fact sheet from Statistics Norway
- Hordaland travel guide from Wikivoyage
- Fedje travel guide from Wikivoyage