#Story - Belgium

A bloody liberation

The battle erupted in full force. For a fortnight, both camps shot back and forth. Kalmthout was heavily bombed. Many houses were damaged and civilians, soldiers and resistance fighters were killed. Step by step, the Allied troops drove the German soldiers northwards. Nieuwmoer and Hoek were the last bits of Kalmthout that the Canadians and the resistance captured from the German army. It was not until 22 October that almost the whole village was liberated. On to Essen!

The turret no longer beckons from afar

On 28 October 1944, the Gazet van Antwerpen took sad stock of the liberation: 'The little tower of Kalmthout no longer beckons from afar; the typical farmhouses with their thatched roofs are no longer like paintings of ancient Kempen country life; the tower of the church was blown up; the farmhouses were plundered and then abandoned to the flames. Mourning hangs over the village.'

Canadezenlaan and the war memorial on Heidestatieplein recall the allies and resistance fighters who together liberated Kalmthout and its boroughs.