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Coordinates: 50°41′17″N 2°52′52″E / 50.6881°N 2.8811°E / 50.6881; 2.8811
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The town hall
The town hall
Coat of arms of Armentières
Location of Armentières
Armentières is located in France
Armentières is located in Hauts-de-France
Coordinates: 50°41′17″N 2°52′52″E / 50.6881°N 2.8811°E / 50.6881; 2.8811
IntercommunalityMétropole Européenne de Lille
 • Mayor (2020–2026) Bernard Haesebroeck[1]
6.28 km2 (2.42 sq mi)
 • Density4,100/km2 (11,000/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
INSEE/Postal code
59017 /59280
Elevation17 m (56 ft)
1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km2 (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

Armentières (French pronunciation: [aʁmɑ̃tjɛʁ]; West Flemish: Armentiers, Picard: Armintîre) is a commune in the Nord department in the Hauts-de-France region in northern France. It is part of the Métropole Européenne de Lille.[3]

The motto of the town is Pauvre mais fière (Poor but proud).


Armentières lies on the Belgian border, northwest of the city of Lille, on the right bank of the river Lys.


In 1668, the town became French, along with most of the rest of French Flanders. At the end of the 19th century and the beginning of the 20th, Armentières acquired fame, being the “City of Fabric”. Industrial weaving, spinning and brewing grew in Armentières, benefitting from the presence of water.

Armentières particularly suffered during the World Wars although the town received two Military Crosses, one for World War I and the second for the Second World War and the Legion d'Honneur. In Armentières and the surrounding areas, the military cemeteries are places of remembrance for the casualties of the World Wars. "Mademoiselle from Armentières" was a popular song among Allied soldiers in World War I.

During World War I, in October 1914, the town was the site of the Battle of Armentières. In April 1918, German troops shelled Armentières with mustard gas. British troops were forced to evacuate the area, but the Germans could not enter for two weeks because of the heavy contamination. Witnesses to the bombardment stated that the shelling was so heavy that liquid mustard gas ran in the streets.[4][5]


Armentières in 1649
Population of Armentières since 1793
YearPop.±% p.a.
1793 7,671—    
1800 7,598−0.14%
1806 7,542−0.12%
1821 7,681+0.12%
1831 6,338−1.90%
1836 6,512+0.54%
1841 6,817+0.92%
1846 7,959+3.15%
1851 8,840+2.12%
1856 10,104+2.71%
1861 11,901+3.33%
1866 15,579+5.53%
1872 19,035+3.40%
1876 21,746+3.38%
1881 25,089+2.90%
1886 27,985+2.21%
1891 28,638+0.46%
1896 29,603+0.67%
YearPop.±% p.a.
1901 29,401−0.14%
1906 28,613−0.54%
1911 28,625+0.01%
1921 14,758−6.41%
1926 21,035+7.35%
1931 22,704+1.54%
1936 24,049+1.16%
1946 22,667−0.59%
1954 24,940+1.20%
1962 25,248+0.15%
1968 26,916+1.07%
1975 26,346−0.31%
1982 24,834−0.84%
1990 25,219+0.19%
1999 25,273+0.02%
2007 25,170−0.05%
2012 25,993+0.65%
2017 24,882−0.87%
Source: EHESS[6] and INSEE (1968-2017)[7]


Arms of Armentières
Arms of Armentières
The arms of Armentières are blazoned :
Argent a fleur de lys gules and on a chief of the same a sun or and a decrescent of the same.


Armentières station, 2013

Armentières has a railway station on the line from Lille to Calais and Dunkirk.

It was commissioned in 1848 by the Chemins de Fer du Nord (Northern Railway Company). The buildings were completed in 1861.[8]

The station is currently served by TER Hauts-de-France trains, on the routes between Lille-Flandres station and Dunkirk, and between Lille-Flandres and Hazebrouck.[9]

Twin towns – sister cities[edit]

Detail of the war memorial in Preying, Bavaria naming Schütze Alois Feichtinger as killed at Armentières, 27 February 1917

Armentières is twinned with:[10]

Notable people[edit]


The Belfry of Armentières

The belfry of Armentières was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List in 2005 as part of the Belfries of Belgium and France site, and in recognition of their influence in the rise of municipal power in Europe.[11] The belfry, just like the nearing city hall was designed by the architect Louis Marie Cordonnier and is open for visitors and tourists.[12]

In fiction[edit]

Milady de Winter in The Three Musketeers hides in Armentières and is caught and executed there.

The bawdy song, Mademoiselle from Armentières, was popular amongst British and American troops during World War 1. There are multiple version of the lyrics, that mostly refer to a woman from the town.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Répertoire national des élus: les maires". data.gouv.fr, Plateforme ouverte des données publiques françaises (in French). 2 December 2020.
  2. ^ "Populations légales 2021" (in French). The National Institute of Statistics and Economic Studies. 28 December 2023.
  3. ^ INSEE commune file
  4. ^ Heller, Charles E. (September 1984). "Chemical Warfare in World War I: The American Experience, 1917–1918". U.S. Army Command and General Staff College. Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. Archived from the original on 4 July 2007. Retrieved 15 January 2009.
  5. ^ "British air raiders" (PDF). nytimes.com. 7 June 1918. Retrieved 23 August 2023.
  6. ^ Des villages de Cassini aux communes d'aujourd'hui: Commune data sheet Armentières, EHESS (in French).
  7. ^ Population en historique depuis 1968, INSEE
  8. ^ Devaux père et fils, « Chemins de fer : service et situation en 1861 », dans Annuaire statistique du département du Nord, Lille, 1863 p. 337 intégral
  9. ^ Site SNCF TER Hauts-de-France, Informations pratiques sur les gares et arrêts : Gare d'Armentières (consulté le 29 janvier 2020).
  10. ^ "Jumelage". armentieres.fr (in French). Armentières. Archived from the original on 2 November 2019. Retrieved 24 April 2021.
  11. ^ "Belfries of Belgium and France". UNESCO World Heritage Centre. United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization. Retrieved 5 November 2021.
  12. ^ "Destination lille Cities and territories". www.visitlilles.com. Retrieved 19 November 2019.

External links[edit]