Did you know ..? #09

Do you know the turbulent history of the Seraing Château?

Located on the banks of the Meuse, on rich alluvial land at the foot of the Condroz, the Seraing Château was for a long time the residence of the Bishop-Princes of Liège. Recognized as a safe place from as early as the end of the 11th century, from the 14th century the site becomes a leisure residence for the Liège rulers. Erard de la Marcq, Georges-Louis de Berghes and Jean-Théodore de Bavière, who were fond of staying there, are in fact the major masters of the site.


Following the Liège revolution, when the region became the Ourthe department under the French Empire, the Château then becomes the property of the State. It is used as a military hospital and then long left more or less abandoned. In 1817, when it had become part of the national holding of the United Provinces of the Netherlands, it is sold by William of Orange to John and James Cockerill. It then becomes the headquarters of the vast industrial project of John Cockerill. In order to ensure the supply of raw materials to his factories and the dispatch of finished products, a canal to the factories is dug (see above).


During the 20th century the Château is subject to the course of history. In 1915, the south wing of the Château burns down. After the war, it is reconstructed in identical fashion under the direction of architect Deprez from the Cockerill company. During the floods which affect the region in 1920 and during the winter of 1925-1926, the whole of the site is under water. The upper floor of the Chateau is the only one to escape this. And then in 1939, bomb shelters are dug all around the Château, in preparation for the war (see opposite). 
This year, CMI is returning the Château to its former glory, by totally renovating it.