Groningen (; gos|Grunn; fry|Grinslân) is the northeasternmost province
of the Netherlands
. It borders on Friesland
to the west, Drenthe
to the south, the German
state of Lower Saxony
to the east, and the Wadden Sea
to the north. As of November 2019, Groningen had a population of 585,881 and a total area of .
The area was subsequently part of Frisia
, the Frankish Empire
, the Holy Roman Empire
, and the Dutch Republic
, which is the precursor state of the Netherlands. In the 14th century, the city of Groningen
became a member of the Hanseatic League
The provincial capital and the largest city in the province is the city of Groningen
(231,299 inhabitants). Since 2016, René Paas
has been the King's Commissioner
in the province. A coalition
, the Labour Party
, People's Party for Freedom and Democracy
, Democrats 66
, and Christian Democratic Appeal
forms the executive branch. The province is divided into 10 municipalities.
The land is mainly used for agriculture
. There are seaports
. The Groningen gas field
was discovered in 1959. The province is home to the University of Groningen
and Hanze University of Applied Sciences
in April 1945]]
Groningen was originally a part of Frisia
. It became a part of the Frankish Empire
around 785. Charlemagne
assigned the Christianization of this new possession to Ludger
In the 11th century, the city of Groningen was a village in Drenthe
that belonged to the Bishopric of Utrecht
, while most of the province was in the Prince-Bishopric of Münster
During the Middle Ages, central control was remote, and the city of Groningen acted as a city-state
, exerting a dominating influence on the surrounding Ommelanden
. In the 14th century, Groningen became one of the towns within the Hanseatic League
Toerisms Groningen. Retrieved on 27 January 2014.
In the years after, Groningen expanded its influence. At its peak almost all of the current province Friesland was under the influence and control of Groningen.
Shortly before 1498, Maximilian I, Holy Roman Emperor
gave Groningen and Friesland to Albert III, Duke of Saxony
, who could however not establish permanent control. In 1514/15 Groningen came to the Duchy of Guelders
, and in 1536 as the Lordship of Groningen
to the Habsburg Netherlands
In 1594, Groningen was conquered
from the Spanish by the Republic of the Seven United Provinces
, precursor state of the Netherlands, to which it belonged henceforth.
During World War II
, the Netherlands were occupied by Nazi Germany
. In April 1945, the 2nd Canadian Division
fought in the Battle of Groningen
, which resulted in the liberation of the city and in the death of 130, the capture of 5,212, and the fleeing of 2,000 German soldiers. In May 1945, another 3,000 German soldiers were captured in the Battle of Delfzijl by the 5th Canadian Division
, after which all of the northern provinces were liberated.
East Groningen was the scene of a particularly fierce class struggle
in the 19th and 20th centuries. Perhaps not coincidentally, Groningen boasts the only municipality (Beerta
) where the Communist Party of the Netherlands
has ever had a mayor
field near Nieuw-Beerta
in the Oldambt
Mudflat hikers">File:Wadlopen bij Pieterburen 02a.jpg|thumb|Mudflat hikers
during low tide on the Wadden Sea
Groningen is situated at in the northeast of the [[Netherlands]]. To the west is the province [[Friesland]], to the south is the province [[Drenthe]], to the east the German districts are [[Leer (district)|Leer]] and [[Emsland]] in the state [[Lower Saxony]], and to the north the North Sea
, and Dollart
. The northernmost point of the Netherlands
is on Rottumerplaat
Oude stafkaarten verzamelen. Retrieved on 2 June 2014.
at ; the easternmost point of the Netherlands
is in Bad Nieuweschans
Groningen is the 7th largest province
of the Netherlands. It has a total area of , with of land and of water. About 80% of the land or is used for agriculture
. The rest of the land is: 9% or of built-up
or semi built-up area, 6% or of nature, 3% or of infrastructure, and 2% or of recreational area.
[Bodemgebruik; uitgebreide gebruiksvorm, per gemeente]
Statistics Netherlands, 2013. Retrieved on 14 April 2014.
The land in Groningen is flat. A large area of the province is below sea level. The Hasseberg near Sellingen
of above sea level is the highest point.
The Groningen gas field
is the 8th largest natural gas field
in the world. Since 1986, the exploitation of this gas field has caused earthquakes
in the region with magnitude
s up to 3.6.
[Aardbevingen door gaswinning in Noord-Nederland]
Royal Netherlands Meteorological Institute, 2013. Retrieved on 27 January 2014.
In the Wadden Sea
of Groningen, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
since 2009, are the sandbank Simonszand
and the natural reserve Rottum
consisting of the three uninhabited islands Rottumeroog
, Rottumerplaat, and Zuiderduintjes
. The national park Lauwersmeer
category II) is located on the border between Groningen and Friesland.
The province of Groningen is also called ''Stad
'', which means the city of Groningen and its surrounding lands, which are the historical regions of Fivelingo
, and Westerwolde
The province (Nomenclature of Territorial Units for Statistics
or NUTS level 2) is divided into three COROP
regions (NUTS level 3): East Groningen, Delfzijl and surroundings, and the rest of Groningen. The COROP regions are used for statistical purposes.
The province is also divided into 10 municipalities
with each their own local government. Currently, Groningen
is the most populated and most densely populated municipality,
containing the largest city.
The province of Groningen has an oceanic climate
(Köppen climate classification
On 1 January 2014, the province of Groningen had a population
of 582,640 and a population density
of , which make it the 9th most populous province
and 8th most densely populated province
of the Netherlands.
[Bevolkingsontwikkeling; regio per maand]
Statistics Netherlands, 2014. Retrieved on 12 March 2014.
The city of Groningen is the most populous city in the province and the 6th most populous city
in the Netherlands.
On 1 January 2013, 92.2% of the total provincial population was born in the Netherlands; and of the 7.8% that was born abroad, the ten most common foreign countries of origin are the neighbour Germany
(1.09%), the former colonies and dependencies Indonesia
(0.60%), Netherlands Antilles
(0.54%), and other countries Turkey
(0.41%), Soviet Union
(0.26%), and United Kingdom
In 1999, a 59% majority of the population of Groningen was not affiliated with any religion; 29% was Protestant
and 14% Dutch Reformed
; since 2004 united in Protestant Church in the Netherlands
), 7% was Roman Catholic
(Diocese of Groningen-Leeuwarden
), and 6% had another religion.
The city of Groningen is the economic center of the province.
Economie.groningen.nl. Retrieved on 8 April 2014.
In the 14th century, the city became a member of the Hanseatic League
Currently some of the city's major employers
are University Medical Center Groningen
with 12,141 employees, University of Groningen
with 5,591 employees, Municipality of Groningen
with 3,063 employees, Education Implementation Service
(DUO) with 2,000 employees, and Gasunie
with 1,748 employees.
The other economically important area is the Ems delta
with the sea ports of Delfzijl
Groningen Seaports. Retrieved on 27 January 2014.
In 2015, a total of 11,589 cargo vessels arrived at the two Groningen Seaports combined, 7,111 sea vessels and 4,478 inland vessels. The ports had a cargo throughput of 11,309,000 tonnes. The chemical industry near Delfzijl is located at the Chemie Park in Farmsum
, with factories of AkzoNobel
, and Teijin Aramid
. Both GDF Suez
have a natural gas-fired power plant in Eemshaven, and Essent
is building a coal-fired power plant there.
The Gross domestic product
(GDP) of the province was 25 billion € in 2018, accounting for 3.2% of the Netherlands economic output. GDP per capita adjusted for purchasing power was 37,300 € or 124% of the EU27 average in the same year.
In 1959, the Groningen gas field
was discovered, and the NAM
started to exploit the field in 1963.
This caused Dutch disease
and induced earthquakes
In 2013, Groningen had a labor force
of 268,000 people and unemployment rate
of 9.6%, which is the second highest unemployment for a province in the Netherlands.
Groningen is home to the Low Saxon dialect
'' (''Grönnegs'' / ''Grunnegs'' in Gronings regional language), In the eastern part of Friesland variations of the Groninger 'language' is spoken. Gronings has local nuances, for example, the people in the eastern part speak Gronings with more German influence. Nowadays, many inhabitants of the province don't speak the dialect, especially in the city of Groningen where many outsiders have moved.
Traditional dishes and delicacies from Groningen are boerenkoolstamppot
, droge worst
, and spekdik
. Traditional alcoholic drinks are boerenjongens
, and heet bier
Museumhuis Groningen is an umbrella organization for museums and other heritage organizations in the province of Groningen and has 58 members. The Groninger Museum
is the most visited museum in the province with 209,195 visitors in 2015. The other museums and heritage organizations with more than 25 thousand visitors in 2015 are Fort Bourtange
in Bourtange, Noordelijk Scheepvaartmuseum
in Groningen, Ter Apel Monastery
in Ter Apel, Fraeylemaborg
in Slochteren, Nationaal Bus Museum
in Hoogezand, and Museumspoorlijn STAR
File:Martini Toren.JPG|Martinitoren, icon of the provincial capital of Groningen
File:Hoge der Aa2.jpg|Der Aa-kerk in Groningen
File:Fraeylemaborg1 Slochteren.jpg|Fraeylemaborg in Slochteren
File:Keukens appingedam.jpg|Hanging kitchens of Appingedam
File:Fortbourtange.jpg|Star fort of Bourtange
File:Goliath Poldermolen.jpg|Windmill Goliath in Eemshaven
File:Strokartonfabriek de Toekomst II A.jpg|Strawboard factory in Scheemda
from the city of Groningen is the only football club from the province in the Eredivisie
. Their home stadium Euroborg
has a capacity of 22,550 seats. In the 2012–2013 competition
, FC Groningen became 7th of the 18 teams. SC Veendam
played in the Eerste Divisie
, but filed for bankruptcy in 2013.
The city of Groningen is also the base of basketball club GasTerra Flames
, volleyball club Lycurgus
, and korfball
The ice rink at the multi-sport center Kardinge
in the city of Groningen is used for national speed skating championships, most recently the 2013 KNSB Dutch Sprint Championships
A provincial government in the Netherlands consists of a Provincial Council
, the directly elected legislative branch, and a Provincial Executive
, the executive branch. The King's Commissioner
, who is appointed by the national government, is chairman of both branches.
[Provincial Council and Provincial Executive](_blank)
, Province of Groningen. Retrieved on 28 January 2014.
The Provincial Council of Groningen
consists of 43 members and the Provincial Executive consists of the King's Commissioner and six deputies. The government has its seat in the city of Groningen, which is the provincial capital.
, member of the Christian Democratic Appeal
(CDA), has been the King's Commissioner since 18 April 2016. He succeeded Max van den Berg
who was the King's Commissioner in Groningen from 2007 to 2016.
In the provincial elections of 2011
, the Labour Party became the largest party with nearly 25% of the votes and 12 seats in the Provincial Council. The next three largest parties are the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy
(VVD) and the Socialist Party
(SP) with 6 seats each, and the Christian Democratic Appeal
(CDA) with 5 seats.
[Verkiezingsuitslagen Provinciale Staten 1918 - heden]
Electoral Council. Retrieved on 27 January 2014.
In 2011, two months after the elections, the member of the Party for the North
(PvhN) continued as an independent under the name Free Mandate. The next provincial elections are planned for 18 March 2015.
Following the 2011 elections, the Provincial Executive was formed by a coalition of the Labour Party, the People's Party for Freedom and Democracy, Democrats 66
(D66), and GreenLeft
(GL). In 2013, GreenLeft left the coalition and was replaced by the ChristianUnion
(CU). The Labour Party has three deputies, the other coalition parties have one deputy each.
2015 provincial election
!colspan="2" align="left"| Party
|align="left"| Socialist Party
|align="left"| Labour Party
|align="left"| Christian Democratic Appeal
|align="left"| Democrats 66
|align="left"| People's Party for Freedom and Democracy
|align="left"| Christian Union
|align="left"| Party for Freedom
|align="left"| Groninger Belang
|align="left"| Party for the Animals
|align="left"| Party for the North
|colspan="7" style="background: #C0C0C0"|
|align="left"| Other parties
In the province of Groningen, there are three national roads ( nl|rijkswegen), which are maintained by Rijkswaterstaat
[Wat voor wegen zijn er in Nederland en wie is de wegbeheerder?]
, Rijksoverheid. Retrieved on 15 March 2014.
The motorway A7
) connects the city of Groningen with the provinces of Friesland and North Holland
in the west and with Winschoten and Germany in the east. The motorway is interrupted for the ring road
of the city of Groningen, where it is the expressway N7. The motorway A28
) starts at the city of Groningen and runs south connecting it with the provinces of Drenthe, Overijssel
, and Utrecht
. The expressway N33 runs south from Eemshaven, via Appingedam and Veendam, to Drenthe. Other roads are overseen by the province (N roads), municipalities, or water boards
falls under the rules for government procurement in the European Union
. Tenders for regional bus and railway services are selected by the province of Groningen. Qbuzz
is contracted for bus services in the period 2009–2015 and Arriva
for railway services in the period 2005–2020. Nederlandse Spoorwegen
operates the railway services from Groningen railway station
southward to Drenthe and beyond.
The railway network in the Netherlands is maintained by ProRail
. There are six railways located partially or entirely in the province of Groningen. The railway station Groningen connects several of these railways.
[Leeuwarden - Groningen]
Sporenplan. Retrieved on 8 March 2014.
The international airport
that serves Groningen is Groningen Airport Eelde
, which is located in Eelde
in the province of Drenthe. The airport is co-owned by the provinces of Groningen and Drenthe and the municipalities of Groningen, Assen
, and Tynaarlo
. Its summer destinations are Antalya
, Gran Canaria
, Palma de Mallorca
, and Tenerife
. Its winter destinations are Innsbruck
. Starting on 5 June 2014, there will also be flights to London
. For other international destinations, Amsterdam Airport Schiphol
is the nearest airport. The general aviation
airports in the province are Oostwold Airport
and Stadskanaal Airfield
Science and education
The University of Groningen
in the city of Groningen was founded in 1614 and is the only research university
(''universiteit'') in the province. On 1 September 2013, it had 29,407 students and 5,238 full-time equivalent
of staff members. The university has ten faculties: Arts, Behavioural and Social Sciences, Economics and Business, Law, Mathematics and Natural Sciences, Medical Sciences, Philosophy, Spatial Sciences, Theology and Religious Studies, and University College Groningen.
The Hanze University of Applied Sciences
, the NHL University of Applied Sciences
, and the Stenden University of Applied Sciences
in the city of Groningen are the province's publicly funded universities of applied sciences (''hogescholen
The ''Dagblad van het Noorden
'' is a regional daily newspaper based in the city of Groningen and is owned by NDC Mediagroep. It was founded in 2002 by merging the ''Nieuwsblad van het Noorden
'', the ''Groninger Dagblad
'', and the ''Drentse Courant
''. In 2015, the newspaper had a circulation of 96,515.
is a regional public broadcaster
of radio and television based in the city of Groningen, with Radio Noord and TV Noord. Their radio station has 121,000 daily listeners and a market share
of 28% (2012) and their TV station has 171,000 daily viewers and a market share of 26.7% (2012).Bereik regionale omroepen blijft dalen
(in Dutch), ''Nu.nl'', 2013. Retrieved on 2 September 2014.
People from the province of Groningen:
* Gronings dialect
* Hoogholtje bridge
*, official government website
Nothing Tops Groningen
official tourism website
Category:Provinces of the Netherlands
Category:Lordships of the Holy Roman Empire