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Hélécine (Municipality, Province of Walloon Brabant, Belgium)


Last modified: 2013-12-11 by ivan sache
Keywords: helecine | heilissem |
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[Flag of Helecine]

Flag of Hélécine - Image by Arnaud Leroy, 10 March 2006

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Presentation of Hélécine

The municipality of Hélécine (in Dutch, Heilissem; 3,109 inhabitants on 1 January 2007; 1,662 ha) is located in the easternmost part of Walloon Brabant, halfway between Brussels and Liège. The municipality of Hélécine was formed in 1976 by the merging of the former municipalities of Linsmeau (in Dutch, Linsmeel), Neerheylissem (in Dutch, Neerheilissem; the administrative seat of the new municipality) and Opheylissem (in Dutch, Opheilissem).

The Norbertine abbey of Heylissem, founded in 1129 was a spiritual, agricultural and industrial (mill) center. The abbey was purchased by the Province of Walloon Brabant and is today the Provincial Domain of Hélécine, made of the neo-classic castle from the 18th century and a 28-ha park open to the public.
The Montgolfiades are organized there every year at the end of June; some 30 hot-air balloons - called in French montgolfières, after the brothers Joseph (1740-1810) and Étienne (1745-1799) de Montgolfier, who invented them in 1783 - take off during the festival.
The beer of the abbey of Heylissem is aromatized with liquorice and violet; it is, however, not brewed in the abbey and therefore not a genuine abbey beer.

The Romanesque Saint-Sulpice church of Neerheylissem was built in the 12th century; it is made of a tower, a triple nave, a transept and an apse. The choir opens by a Gothic triumphal arch.
The Carnival of Neerheylissem takes place on the third Saturday and Sunday in Lent in the hamlet of Ardevoor; it is the only carnival of Germanic tradition in Walloon Brabant and is famous for its witches, called Macrales.
In Linsmeau, the chapel Notre-Dame de la Colombe was built on the main square of the village in 1327 by lord Jean de Racour.

Source: Municipal website

Ivan Sache, 10 March 2006

Flag of Hélécine

The flag of Hélécine is white with a red bend fimbriated in yellow.
According to Armoiries communales en Belgique. Communes wallonnes, bruxelloises et germanophones [w2v03], the flag is prescribed by a Decree adopted on 29 February 1996 by the Municipal Council and confirmed on 30 April 1999 by the Executive of the French Community, as Blanc à la diagonale descendante rouge liserée de jaune.

The flag has the colours of the municipal arms arranged according to the geometry of the canton. The municipal arms of Hélécine are D'argent à trois étriers de gueules liés d'or, au franc-quartier de gueules à la bande d'argent (Argent three stirrups gules tied up or the canton gules a bend argent).
However, the arms shown on the top of the frontpage of the municipal website show only two stirrups. On that very small image, the bond seems to be black and not yellow.

Arnaud Leroy, Pascal Vagnat & Ivan Sache, 10 March 2006