About us

About us

We, Ilse and Niek, are passionate about history. We have been running the Hooge Crater Museum full time since 2008, which has grown into the best private WWI museum. From that point of view, we are also involved in the reconstruction and the rich history around Hooge and Bellewaerde. Every year since 2008 we have invested heavily in this museum cause to develop it into what it is today.

Year after year we receive the title of "Best private museum in Belgium", of which we are very proud. We do our utmost every day to do this title justice.

Be sure to check out the sites of our other tourism companies as well;


There's something for everyone, and everyone is welcome at the Hooge!

Many greetings, Ilse and Niek

Hooge Chateau and its stables were the scene of very fierce fighting throughout the First World War. On 31 October 1914, the staff of the 1st and 2nd Divisions were wiped out when the chateau was shelled; from 24 May to 3 June 1915, the chateau was defended against German attacks and in July 1915, the crater was made by a mine sprung by the 3rd Division. On 30 July, the Germans took the chateau, and on 9 August, it and the crater were regained by the 6th Division. The Germans retook Hooge on 6 June 1916 and on 31 July 1917, the 8th Division advanced 1.6 Kms beyond it. It was lost for the last time in April 1918, but regained by the 9th (Scottish) and 29th Divisions on 28 September.

Hooge Crater Cemetery
Hooge Crater Cemetery

Hooge Crater Cemetery was begun by the 7th Division Burial Officer early in October 1917. It contained originally 76 graves, in Rows A to D of Plot I, but was greatly increased after the Armistice when graves were brought in from the battlefields of Zillebeke, Zantvoorde and Gheluvelt and some nearby smaller cemeteries.

There are now 5,923 Commonwealth servicemen of the First World War buried or commemorated in this cemetery. 3,579 of the burials are unidentified, but special memorials record the names of a number of casualties either known or believed to be buried among them, or whose graves in other cemeteries were destroyed by shell fire.

The cemetery was designed by Sir Edwin Lutyens.