Province of North Brabant

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Province of the Netherlands Flag of the Netherlands.svg
coat of arms flag
Noord-Brabant wapen.svg North Brabant-Flag.svg
Map: Province of North Brabant in the NetherlandsZeeland Zuid-Holland Baarle (zu Belgien) Noord-Brabant Groningen Bundesrepublik Deutschland Limburg Friesland Flevoland Drenthe Noord-Holland IJsselmeer Utrecht Overijssel Gelderland Frankreich Belgien Nordsee
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Basic data
Capital 's-Hertogenbosch
Biggest town Eindhoven
ISO 3166-2 code NL-NB
Royal Commissioner Wim van de Donk ( CDA )
Ruling parties VVD , FvD , CDA , Lokaal Brabant
Residents 2,546,562 ( 3rd of 12 )
Country share 14.7% of the Dutch
Population density 519 inhabitants per km² ( 5th of 12 )
Religion (2015, CBS ) 48% - Roman Catholic
0 5% - Islam
0 3% - Protestant
0 2% - Dutch Reformed
0 1% - Reformed
0 3% - other
38% - none
surface 5,082.06 km²
- country 4,905.47 km² (3rd of 12)
- Water 176.59 km²
Coordinates 51 ° 34 ′  N , 5 ° 11 ′  E Coordinates: 51 ° 34 ′  N , 5 ° 11 ′  E
Administrative division
Communities 62
Topography of the province of Noord-Brabant

Topography of the province of Noord-Brabant

Noord-Brabant ( German  North Brabant ) is a province in the south of the Netherlands with 2,546,562 inhabitants (as of January 31, 2019). The capital of the province is ' s-Hertogenbosch (also called Den Bosch ).


Noord-Brabant borders the Dutch provinces of Limburg , Gelderland , Zuid-Holland and Zeeland as well as the Belgian region of Flanders .


In the early Middle Ages the province was inhabited by Franks . In the 11th century, the area of ​​today's province became part of the Duchy of Brabant , in which Noord-Brabant was the northernmost part. The duchy got rich in the 12th century because the trade routes between Flanders and Cologne and the trade route between northern France and Holland crossed here. This led to the emergence of various cities such as Breda and 's-Hertogenbosch . In the 14th and 15th centuries, the region experienced an economic and cultural boom. In the 15th century, the Netherlands was inherited by the Dukes of Burgundy. In the Burgundian Netherlands , the Duchy of Brabant was the most important province. In 1515 the duchy came to the Habsburgs and after the abdication of Charles V to his son Philip II of Spain . When the Eighty Years' War broke out in 1568 and Holland came under the control of William of Orange in 1572 , Noord-Brabant became a battlefield that changed hands several times. In 1648 Noord-Brabant was assigned to the Republic of the Seven United Netherlands in the Peace of Westphalia . The old Duchy of Brabant was split into two parts. This also defines today's border between Belgium and the Netherlands. Economically, the separation meant the loss of the central geographic location of Noord-Brabant. A new limit also meant that merchants had to pay tariffs, which slowed trade. Noord-Brabant became impoverished. The situation got worse because the republic forced high taxes out of the province of Noord-Brabant.

During the Eighty Years' War, Noord-Brabant remained loyal to the Catholic denomination under the influence of the Counter-Reformation . The Catholic background of Noord-Brabant meant that the Calvinist rulers in Holland were suspicious of Noord-Brabant, as Catholicism was also the denomination of the Spaniards. Noord-Brabant got no self-government (as opposed to other provinces of the Seven United Netherlands) and was under the name State Brabant the Generalitätslanden assigned and by the States General managed. The Catholic faith was forbidden by the States General. Catholic masses were tolerated if you paid a fee and did not celebrate mass in public. In the border area, many believers celebrated mass in the Spanish Netherlands , where many so-called border churches were built.

Only after 1792, when the French conquered the Netherlands and the Batavian Republic was proclaimed in 1795 , did this situation change. Freedom of worship was also introduced in this republic, which meant that the ban on Catholic worship was lifted. In 1806, Noord-Brabant became an independent department in the Napoleonic Kingdom of Holland (1806-1810). After the defeat of Napoleon and the reorganization of European states at the Congress of Vienna (1815), Noord-Brabant became one of the seventeen provinces in the new Kingdom of the United Netherlands . The province of South Brabant was established in the area of Brussels . After the Belgian Revolution in 1830, Noord-Brabant was positive about the new Belgian state , but the province remained loyal to the Netherlands. South Brabant became definitely Belgian in 1839, but Noord-Brabant has never been renamed Brabant since . This explains why there is a province with the prefix “North” in the south of the Netherlands, but nowadays there is no province of South Brabant.

At the end of the 19th century, industrialization also began in Noord-Brabant. Since wages in Noord-Brabant were low compared to Holland, it was very attractive for industry to settle in Noord-Brabant. The textile industry in particular developed strongly. The villages of Tilburg and Eindhoven were the most important settlements for industry and developed into large cities under the influence of industry. In 1891 the later electronics company Philips was founded in Eindhoven ; the first product was light bulbs . This company also promoted the social development of Eindhoven; the company's founders wanted their employees to lead healthy lives. To this end, Philips u. a. the now very successful football club Philips Sportverein (PSV).

From 1870 to about 1965, there was in the Netherlands a system of pillarisation , which means that the company was divided into every area of life in ideological pillars. At that time there was also a Catholic column, which was predominant in Noord-Brabant (86.8% of the population were Catholic in 1889). The Catholic Church ruled every area of ​​life. This was expressed in regular church attendance and the building of new churches. The birth was nowhere as high as in the two Catholic in majority provinces (Noord-Brabant and the Netherlands Limburg ); the proportion of the population of Noord-Brabant in the total Dutch population grew strongly. Back then it was a tradition that every second son became a priest . The Catholic pillar appeared politically as a single entity (75% of the Noord-Brabander people voted for the Katholieke Volkspartij ), which stimulated Catholic emancipation in the traditionally Calvinist Netherlands. For Noord-Brabant this meant that its interests were better represented. This period in the history of Noord-Brabant, in which very large church activities took place (also missionary overseas, see e.g. Steyler Mission ), is called Rijke Roomse Leven (German: rich Roman life ) called. The Catholic Church was similarly active in neighboring regions of other countries (e.g. Rhineland, Northern France). From around 1850 until the beginning of World War I it was characterized by strong anti-modernism and a strong bond with the Vatican ( ultramontanism ) (see also Roman Catholic Church in France , Roman Catholic Church in Belgium , Roman Catholic Church in the Netherlands ) .

From 1965 onwards, under the influence of the economic growth of the 1960s, secularization set in in Noord-Brabant , which meant that the influence of the church fell sharply (as did the birth rate from the pill break ). Visiting the fair has also become significantly less frequent. In 2003 around 64% of the North Brabants were still Catholic. In 2014 it was still 49.6% Catholics compared to 5.5% Protestants, 3.9% Muslims, 2.9% members of other religions and 37.8% non-denominationalists. There are still remnants of "rich Roman life" today.

Carnival is celebrated annually in the Catholic south of the Netherlands (and especially in Noord-Brabant) . The school system is also still Catholic. More than 80% of the students, both Catholic and non-religious and non-denominational, attend one of the Catholic schools because of its good reputation and its popularity.

The Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum (BHIC) researches the history of Noord-Brabant. It has about 1500 archives; the papers and documents stored are around 30,000 meters.


(in %)
Otherwise. j
Gains and losses
compared to 2015
 % p
Otherwise. j
Template: election chart / maintenance / notes
j PvdD 3.73% (+0.58%), Lokaal Brabant 2.52% (+0.68%), CU / SGP 1.92% (-0.11%), other 3.12% (+ 2.69%)
8th 10 4th 
A total of 55 seats

The provincial parliament ( Dutch Provinciale Staten ) has its seat in the Provinciehuis in the provincial capital 's-Hertogenbosch . According to the population in the province, the parliament has 55 seats.

In the provincial election on March 20, 2019, the parties obtained the following shares of the vote: VVD 16.18% (10 seats), FvD 14.45% (9 seats), CDA 13.31% (8 seats), SP 9.19% ( 5 seats), D66 8.78% (5 seats), GroenLinks 8.65% (5 seats), PVV 7.64% (4 seats), PvdA 6.40% (3 seats), 50PLUS 4.11% ( 2 seats), PvdD 3.73% (2 seats), Lokaal Brabant 2.52% (1 seat), ChristenUnie / SGP 1.92% (1 seat), the other 3.12%. The turnout was 52.40%.

The next provincial election will take place on March 22, 2023.Template: future / in 2 years

At the head of the province is the king's commissioner . Since October 2009 this has been the Christian Democrat Wim van de Donk . After the 2019 election, there was initially a coalition of VVD , CDA , Democrats 66 , GroenLinks and PvdA . In December 2019, the CDA left the coalition out of dissatisfaction with the planned rules for nitrogen emissions by agriculture. VVD, Forum voor Democratie , CDA and the provincial party Lokaal Brabant agreed on a new coalition that started work on May 15, 2020 after the election of the new deputies of the Gedeputeerde states .


St. John's Cathedral in the provincial capital 's-Hertogenbosch

As of 2019 there are still 62 municipalities in the province:

  1. Alphen Chaam (10,163)
  2. Altena (55,489)
  3. Asten (16,728)
  4. Baarle-Nassau (6850)
  5. Bergeijk (18,516)
  6. Bergen op Zoom (66,857)
  7. Bernheze (30,804)
  8. Best (29,805)
  9. Bladel (20,209)
  10. Boekel (10,617)
  11. Boxmeer (29,133)
  12. Boxtel (30,726)
  13. Breda (184.003)
  14. Cranendonck (20,464)
  15. Cuijk (24,940)
  16. Deurne (32,364)
  17. Dongen (26,076)
  18. Drimmelen (27,156)
  19. Eersel (19,132)
  20. Eindhoven (231,584)
  21. Etten-Leur (43,781)
  22. Geertruidenberg (21,516)
  23. Geldrop-Mierlo (39,597)
  24. Gemert Bakel (30,454)
  25. Gilze en Rijen (26,456)
  26. Goirle (23,782)
  27. Grave (12,486)
  28. Hair (14,210)
  29. Halderberge (30,192)
  30. Heeze-Leende (15,964)
  31. Helmond (91,653)
  32. 's-Hertogenbosch (154,343)
  33. Heusden (44,146)
  34. Hilvarenbeek (15,322)
  35. Laarbeek (22,354)
  36. Landerd (15,545)
  37. Loon op Zand (23,347)
  38. Meierijstad (80,000)
  39. Mill en Sint Hubert (10,891)
  40. Moerdijk (36,976)
  41. Nuenen, Gerwen en Nederwetten (23,178)
  42. Oirschot (18,639)
  43. Oisterwijk (26,138)
  44. Oosterhout (55,687)
  45. Oss (91,459)
  46. Reusel-De Mierden (13,069)
  47. Roosendaal (77,095)
  48. Rucphen (22,574)
  49. Sint Anthonis (11,619)
  50. Sint-Michielsgestel (28,990)
  51. Someren (19,362)
  52. Son en Breugel (16,977)
  53. Steenbergen (25,084)
  54. Tilburg (217,595)
  55. Uden (41,845)
  56. Valkenswaard (30,928)
  57. Veldhoven (45,397)
  58. Vught (26,427)
  59. Waalre (17,287)
  60. Waalwijk (48,253)
  61. Woensdrecht (21,845)
  62. Zundert (21,629)

(Residents on January 31, 2019)


The most popular sport in Noord-Brabant is football. In the province, the following football clubs play in the top division of Dutch football (as of November 2017):


The old towns of Breda and 's-Hertogenbosch are worth seeing. In 's-Hertogenbosch you can take a tour of the fortress. Breda is a so-called Orange City because it is closely connected to the Dutch royal family. Many buildings in the city are reminiscent of the royal family. William of Orange lived in the castle for a short time as Baron von Breda.

There are 22 Belgian enclaves in the village of Baarle . There are 7 Dutch enclaves in these enclaves. The village is divided into the Dutch municipality of Baarle-Nassau and the Belgian municipality of Baarle-Hertog .

The amusement park “De Efteling ” is also located in the province. Well-known fairy tales are depicted in the park's fairytale forest. There are also various attractions. South of Breda is the Mastbos recreational forest , which was created in the 15th century to supply Spanish and Dutch ships with pine wood.

Noord-Brabant also has a lot to offer for nature lovers. Scattered across the province are many forests and heathlands that are administered by the state. These forests are open to the public. The most famous nature area is De Biesbosch , one of the last wetlands in Europe.

Due to the international broadcast of the comedy series New Kids , the village of Maaskantje , in front of whose town sign the main characters of the series pose for every sketch, has become a popular destination for fans of the series since the end of the 2000s.


Various major roads, highways and railways run across the province. The A 16 ( E 19 ) is an important north-south connection that connects the ports of Rotterdam and Antwerp . The A 2 is also an important north-south link connecting Amsterdam and Maastricht . The A 58 / A 67 ( E 312 ) is the most important east-west connection in the province and connects the Zeeland coast with Germany .


Noord-Brabant is the fastest growing region in the Netherlands. The city network BrabantStad , a partnership between the cities of Breda, Eindhoven, Helmond, 's-Hertogenbosch and Tilburg as well as the province, is economically important . Over 2000 patents are registered here every year, mainly from Philips and the Eindhoven University of Technology . Technology focuses on biomedicine and medical technology as well as mechanical engineering. The car manufacturer Tesla operates an assembly plant in Tilburg, DAF a truck plant in Eindhoven. The textile industry also plays a certain role. In 2015, the region's gross domestic product per inhabitant, expressed in purchasing power standards , was 131% of the EU-28 average . In 2017, the unemployment rate was 4.2%, below the national average.

Individual evidence

  1. Religieuze betrokkenheid; kerkelijke gezindte; regio. CBS , December 22, 2016, accessed November 19, 2018 (Dutch).
  2. Bevolkingsontwikkeling; regio per maand . In: StatLine . Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek (Dutch)
  3. PDF at
  4. [1]
  5. religion; naar regio; 2000/2002 of 2003 , CBS
  6. Religieuze betrokkenheid van bevolkingsgropen, 2010-2014 , CBS
  7. ^ Het Brabants Historisch Informatie Centrum (BHIC)
  8. Provinciale Staten 20 March 2019. In: Kiesraad , accessed May 1, 2019 (Dutch).
  9. Provinciale Staten 18 March 2015. In: Kiesraad , accessed May 1, 2019 (Dutch).
  10. Bestuursakkoord Brabant 2019 - 2023: 'Kiezen voor Kwaliteit'. In: Provincie Noord-Brabant, June 7, 2019, accessed July 12, 2019 (Dutch).
  11. Omroep Brabant: Brabant stapt uit de coalitie vanwege stikstof, deadlines zijn nog niet van de baan
  12. ^ Trouw: College Noord-Brabant geïnstalleerd na omstreden aanloop
  13. Bevolkingsontwikkeling; regio per maand . In: StatLine . Centraal Bureau voor de Statistiek (Dutch)
  14. Eurostat. Retrieved April 15, 2018 .
  15. Unemployment rate, by NUTS 2 regions. Retrieved November 5, 2018 .
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