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(17) - Gemeinde Selfkant (D) NEW photos below!!

D-52538 Selfkant

Westernmost borough of Germany with 7,500 inhabitants, situated in the Kreis Heinsberg community (local licence plate: HS) between Mönchengladbach and Aachen.

Selfkant is surrounded by Dutch territory on three sides and the local architecture and landscape has some striking similarities to neighboring Dutch communities.

The Dutch national road N274 (from Heerlen to Roermond) crosses German territory on a length of 3,2 miles, yet this road has no connection to the inner-German road network. It was built long before Schengen in 1959 when there were still customs and border patrols and this trunk road crosses the German community of Heinsberg on stilts.

Following the Dutch-German Treaty the territory was handed over to Germany on 01.08.1963. On 21.10.1963 the first local elections under German administration were held.

Following the EU-association and the end of customs and border controls (Schengen Treaty), the road was incorporated into the German road-network on 25th February 2002 and now has the German number "L410", while the Dutch parts (although not 'connected' anymore) keep using the N274 number.

Map!! Selfkant (D):

Overview: map of surroundings:

 Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Selfkant (D):

On our way to the border: from the regional community capital Heinsberg we travel to the westernmost borough of Germany...

 Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Selfkant (D):

On the way to the western border, we first cross this bridge and take a break to have a closer look: The Dutch national road N274 (from Heerlen to Roermond) crosses German territory on a length of 3,2 miles, yet this road has no connection to the inner-German road network. It was built after 1959 when there were still customs and border patrols and this trunk road crosses the German community of Heinsberg on stilts.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Selfkant (D):

On the bridge, looking north: below the Dutch trunk road with Dutch road signs and mileage indicators - and of course - Holland oblige - a cyclist's path on both sides.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Selfkant (D):

On the bridge, looking south: below the Dutch trunk road.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Selfkant (D):

On the bridge, looking south: below the Dutch trunk road. A little detail on the left hand side: the German street ends in front of a little 'mole-hill' without being connected to the trunk road. Local residents who want to go to Dutch Heerlen or Roermond (NL) have to make quite a detour.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Millen (D):

In the village: nicely decorated brick-houses that somehow might remind us of neighboring Limburg or Belgian territory rather. The village is off the beaten track in the westernmost part of the borough, and the 2nd westernmost village of Germany.

 Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW)  Millen (D):

Millen was part of Dutch territory until 1963 when it was given back to Germany, this small bord next to the front-door is a remainder of this time.

(It is in Dutch indicating that the owner has the right to serve alcohol to his guests)

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Millen (NL):

Without really noticing we have changed sides: the village called Millen is in Germany, no doubt, yet the castle Millen (kasteel Millen) just across the small river is in Holland: the tiny Rode Bach (D) / Roode Beek (NL) is the official state border here, placing the castle into Holland, yet the village in front of it into Germany.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Millen (NL):

View from the square in front of the castle entrance: the water mill (of the castle?) is in Germany, yet cannot be reached through the bushes, but you have to make a detour via the main street.

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Millen (D/NL):

By taking this narrow side street to be exactly. There is no place name board or any other sign welcoming us in Millen here, in fact, we have not even left the village, we just went abroad for a little moment to see the castle...

Gem. Selfkant / Kreis Heinsberg (NRW) Millen (D/NL):

The tiny border river called Roode Beek / Rode Bach with border-pole along the road back into the village.

 

New photos 2007 + 2008:

 

Selfkant

Selfkant (D):

The former exterritorial road on stilts, now is a normal German road and has been connected to the German local road-network.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

Welcome sign: Germany's westernmost borough.

 Selfkant Isenbruch (D):

The westernmost residential quarter of Germany, just 200 yds. from the Dutch border.

 Selfkant Selfkant (D):

The border along the river Roode Beek / Rode Bach near Isenbruch just 200m further west.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

Half a mile north of Isenbruch along the district road No. 1 we reach the westernmost of Germany.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

Half a mile north of Isenbruch along the district road No. 1 we reach the westernmost of Germany.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

At the former border-crossing we find a stone with a commemorative plaque in German only.

Translation:
Borderstone 309b
Westernmost point of...
The Federal Republic of Germany
The Federal State of Northrhine-Westfalia
The Province Cologne
The District Heinsberg
The Borough Cologne

and let me add: also of the German language area.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

The commemorative stone from a distance next to a sign-post indicating "Netherlands".

 Selfkant Selfkant (D):

Next to the road there is a cycling and footpath and another border-stone.

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

The westernmost house of Germany and the Federal State Northrhine-Westfalia: Haus Groevenkamp at the end of the District Road No. 1

Selfkant Selfkant (D):

Looking from House Groevenkamp in northern direction: on the Dutch side of the border there is a handfull of living-houses.

Selfkant Susteren (NL):

An interesting particularity just 200 yds. north of the border on Dutch territory: a stone in the grass verge indicating the distance to the German capital Berlin: 643km (=400 miles).

(IJsstraat)

Selfkant Nieuwstadt (NL):

From German Isenbruch the Dutch town called 'Nieuwstadt' is the first place to be reached. The place-name is also shown in local Limburgish language below the official Dutch name.
Nieuwstadt is situated along the IC-railway line from Roermond to Maastricht via Sittard.

 

 


BK January 2003 / October 2007 / 2008

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