Venray city centre
Location in Limburg
|• Body||Municipal council|
|• Mayor||Hans Gilissen (PvdA)|
|• Total||165.00 km2 (63.71 sq mi)|
|• Land||163.38 km2 (63.08 sq mi)|
|• Water||1.62 km2 (0.63 sq mi)|
|Elevation||25 m (82 ft)|
|Population (May 2014)|
|• Density||265/km2 (690/sq mi)|
|Time zone||CET (UTC+1)|
|• Summer (DST)||CEST (UTC+2)|
Venray (old Dutch spelling: Venraij) ( pronunciation (help·info)) (Limburgish: Venroj) is a municipality and a town in Limburg, the Netherlands. As of March 2015, Venray has about 43,222 inhabitants (source: CBS).
Venray consists of 13 population centers located on a surface of 146,000 km, with 43,222 inhabitants. About 30.000 of those inhabitants live in Venray itself, the other 13,000 live in one of the 12 surrounding towns. After Venlo, Venray is the second biggest city in northern Limburg.
In 1905, the Sint Servatius mental hospital for males was built by the Brothers of Charity. The first patients arrived in 1907. In 1906, the Sint Anna mental hospital for women was built by the Sisters of Charity of Jesus and Mary. The first patients arrived in 1909. In 1969, management of the mental hospitals was transferred to two separate foundations. Both mental hospitals have had a big impact on Venray from cultural, religious and employment perspectives that lasts up to today. Nowadays, both mental hospitals are managed by GGZ Noord- en Midden-Limburg.
Venray also hosts one of 12 mental hospitals in the Netherlands, De Rooyse Wissel, that house people assigned to mental treatment as a measure by the courts.
St. Peter in Chains Church
The St. Peter ad Vincula church in Venray hosts one of the largest late medieval collections of wooden sculptures that survived the iconoclasm of the protestant reformation in the Netherlands. The church itself was originally built in the 15th century in the gothic style. It was rebuilt after extensive damage following the World War II Battle of Overloon.
World War II
Towards the end of World War II there were a lot of battles in and around Venray, damaging large parts of the center of Venray. One of the more famous battles around Venray is the Battle of Overloon. One of the biggest tank battles between the Germans and Americans was fought in Oktober 1944 in Overloon, resulting in hundreds of casualties on both sides. Venray was not liberated until 1945. Venray is also famous for its German War Cemetery, as it is the only German war cemetery in the Netherlands. 31.598 German soldiers are buried at this cemetery.
- Inalfa: Venray hosts the head-office and a manufacturing plant of Inalfa, a supplier of car roofs to the automotive industry.
- Flextronics: Venray hosts manufacturing units and logistics centers for Flextronics
- Herbalife: Venray hosts a European logistics center for Herbalife.
- OTTO Work Force: Venray hosts the head-office for OTTO Work Force, a temp agency that predominantly provides Polish expatriate workers.
- Xerox: Venray hosts a manufacturing plant and European logistics center for Rank Xerox, later Xerox. Nowadays, the European logistics center and a Toner and Photoconductor plant remain. In the 1990s Xerox outsourced manufacturing of copier and printers to Flextronics.
- Royal Netherlands Air Force: Venray houses De Peel Air Base.
Small and medium enterprises and mental healthcare also continue to play an important role in the local economy. Venray also provides logistics through its Meuse river harbor in Wanssum and A73 motorway.
The western section of Venray, the villages Vredepeel and Ysselsteyn, was reclaimed from the Peel peat bogs in the early 20th century. Parts of the peat bogs remain and have been transferred to a national park. The western section of Venray is also straddled by part of the Peel-Raam Line, defensive works consisting out of a canal and bunkers dating to the World War II period.
Venray, near Geijsteren, also has a forest and sand dune area, that is one of the few locations in the Netherlands that is home to common juniper.
- Michelle Courtens (born 1981), a singer
- Edward Linskens (born 1968), a football player
- Harry Peeters (1931-2012), a historian and psychologist
- Mark Veens (born 1978), a freestyle swimmer
- Gerard Verschuuren (born 1946), a human geneticist and philosopher
- Peter Winnen (born 1957), a cyclist, winner of Alpe d'Huez
- "Samenstelling college" [Members of the board] (in Dutch). Gemeente Venray. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- "Kerncijfers wijken en buurten" [Key figures for neighbourhoods]. CBS Statline (in Dutch). CBS. 2 July 2013. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
- "Postcodetool for 5801MB". Actueel Hoogtebestand Nederland (in Dutch). Het Waterschapshuis. Retrieved 3 December 2013.
- "Bevolkingsontwikkeling; regio per maand" [Population growth; regions per month]. CBS Statline (in Dutch). CBS. 26 June 2014. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
||Sint Anthonis (NB)||Boxmeer (NB)|
|Gemert-Bakel (NB)||Meuse / Bergen|
|Deurne (NB)||Horst aan de Maas|