The Netherlands / Landmark
The former Tienakker convent in Wijchen served as a headquarters for the Allied troops during WWII and was even visited by the British king.
This convent was founded and put into use in 1855 by the Franciscan Sisters of Saint Lucy. In Wijchen, the sisters mainly focused on education and care for the elderly and established various homes for the elderly, as well as schools.
During WWII, the convent served a range of purposes. It was confiscated by the German Wehrmacht and housed the sick from the Sint Jozefgesticht (a local hospital) and people fleeing Nijmegen.
In September 1944 Operation Market Garden got underway. The city of Wijchen was liberated during this Allied operation, which aimed to capture the bridges over the Maas, the Waal and the Rhine. The British troops then established an HQ in the convent, following which there was a constant coming and going of British and American soldiers.
One day, the convent received a famous visitor, King George VI. During his secret visit to the front lines in October 1944, he came to the convent to support his troops and boost morale. Not much is known about the King's visit, but it is likely that he also spent a night in the convent.
During his visit to the Nijmegen area and the convent in Wijchen, Field Marshal Montgomery, the man behind Operation Market Garden, and commander of the 82nd Airborne Division, General James Gavin, two other famous men, explained the strategies to King George. These men also spent time in the convent.
The former convent currently houses residential apartments. A monument in front of the entrance tells the wartime history of the former convent.
Laantje 4, 6602 AB Wijchen