Town Hall, Delft
You can only get inside of this beautiful building twice a year, otherwise it is almost impossible. The Town Hall is mostly used for celebrations such as weddings, during which you could maybe get a chance to walk inside at see more. The tower that is attached to it has a very interesting story to tell, it was used as a prison, when Delft was on fire, the prisoners where the first ones to notice it and started screaming, they then were offered to help to stop the fire and in return all of them were set free.
The town hall is difficult to miss once you've come on the main square.. And even before that time, it's tower will tell you where you have to go..
The town hall was constructed between 1618 and 1620 but made use of the remaining parts if the burned down older town hall. From that fire the current big tower called het Steen (13th century) and a few walls remained.
The City Hall is one of the most beautifully decorated buildings in Delft. You'll find it at the same square of the New Church. It was built in the early 17th century. It was designed by the Dutch architect De Keyser. Some of the parts of this building even date back to 13th century. You can visit one of the rooms on weekdays between 8 and 4:30.
Now that we've got our brochures and touristinformation, it's time for a stroll.
Let's start at the town hall on Markt square.
It was built in 1620 by the famous Dutch architect Hendrik de Keyser, who also left his mark all over Amsterdam.
Unfortunately, the sun was shining right in my lense and there were stalls in front of it. So a proper picture could not be made.
The Delft city hall, which underwent a 20th C restoration to the original Renaissance architecture, dates to the 17th C and architect Hendrick de Keyser following a fire in 1618 which destroyed an earlier building, The red shutters are iconic. The Gothic tower at the rear is a 13th C limestone-covered structure which survived the fire and was used as a prison ( among other occupants Bathasar Gerard ). The clockface dates from 1536. Below the coat of arms is a statue of Justice.
The tower still houses a museum including torture devices, available to tourists only by pre-appoiintment. Indeed the entire building is off limits for tourists, including many period paintings from the 17th C. During the 18th C, guilds for precious metals occupied the building. today the Stadthuis is used largely for marriages ( following in the footsteps of none other than Johannes Vermeer and Catharine Bolnes ). A most eyecatching and photogenic building.
on the markt on the other site of nieuwe kerk you can see the stadhuis.
Of the original mediaeval building of the Stadhuis or Raadhuis, located on Markt square, which burnt down in 1618, only the squat central tower towards the back remains. The rest of the edifice was rebuilt around it in 1620 in a festive Northern Renaissance style by architect Hendrick de Keijzer (1565-1621).
This is one of the most inescapable buildings in all of Delft and should not be missed. In the 13th century, when this place was the property of the Count of Holland, a central court stood here. In 1435 the whole area, including the market square, came into the hands of the city of Delft and a town hall was created within the existing complex. Due to constant expansion the town hall evolved around the old tower that used to be the prison.
During a destructive fire of 1536 the town hall burnt down. Though restored to some degree it was modernized and increased in size. Further construction in the 16th century led to the shape of the general shape of magnificent building that we see today. In 1618 the town hall again burnt to the ground, leaving only the central tower slightly damaged. Several architects made designs for a new town hall and eventually Hendrick de Keyser was choosen. His plans used the old tower again and surrounded it with the vast building that is beautifully decorated and has many windows. It was finished in 1620.
One thing you can clearly see, especially in pic 3, is where the town crier used to stand to deliver messages from the little balcony on the first floor.
This city hall as we see it today was built between 1618-1620 and designed by Hendrick de Keyser . It's a remarkable building and you can clearly see that, in the past, it had a different function than today. it was a Count's residence but if you look at the tall tower it becomes clear that the building used to serve as the city prison, too.
The town hall was designed by Hendrick de Keyser using bits from the former court of the count of Holland that stood at this location, most notably its tower. The rest of the building, built between 1618 and 1620, is a vdery nice example of Manneristic architecture, and has a richly decorated front.
Except for a tower called Het Nieuwe Steen, the town hall burnt down in the early 17th century. The building was replaced by a design presented by the architect Hendrick de Keyser. The present day façade of the building has been restored to this 17th century vision.
While we did not visit the interior of the town hall, we did enjoy it from the market grounds with our beer and coffee. Much, or rather most of the original buildling was burnt down and then later rebuilt, you can find out more at the website I have added.
That's what you get when you play at being tourist. You suddenly find yourself standing in the way of a wedding procession. After all, the monumental Town Hall is not just a thing of the past but also a feature of the present.
Besides the high Nieuwe Kerk-tower, the most remarkable building here on the Markt (market square) is the town hall. Already in the 13th century when this place was property of the Count of Holland, a central court stood here. In 1435 the place (including the market square, cam in the hands of the city of Delft and a town hall was created within the excisting complex. Due to constant expensions the town hall became a block around the significant old tower, that used to be the prison. During the cityfire of 1536 the town hall burnt down. It was restored, but modernized and larger. Further construction in the 16th century lead to the magnificent building that we see today. In 1618 the town hall again burnt down to the ground, leaving only the central tower somewhat damaged. Several architects made designs for a new town hall and eventually Hendrick de Keyser was choosen. His plans used the old tower again and surrounded it with the vast building that is beautifully decorated and has many windows. It was finished in 1620.
The tower, beautifully decorated with the siogns of Holland and Delft (coat of arms)was nicknamed "Het Steen" (The Stone), because beside the Old Church, it was the first stone (brick) building in medieval Delft. Halfway the tower a little platform was made from where news was brought (cried out) to the people. In later times the clockwork and carillon were added and the interior of the buildings surrounding the tower became furnished. Especially the city council room is still today a wonderful sight to see. Inside the tower there is still a small museum about the prison function of the tower and it's history.
The current town hall was built in 1620 by H. de Keyser. His constrcutions surrounded the original 13th century tower which had been constructed by Het Steen.
The building is now a popular place for young couples to get married.