Explore the past

Masterpieces in Heeze, Leende, Sterkel and Leenderstrijp

The beautiful past of the four cores

Amid the vast natural areas of the Strabrechtse Heide, the Groote Heide and the Achelse Kluis lie the four village centers of the municipality of Heeze-Leende. Heeze, Leende, Sterksel and Leenderstrijp breathe tranquility and space. Above all, they invite you to recreate and enjoy the local Masterpieces.

Around 1900, the painters of the Haagse School captured unspoiled nature, village views, long-gabled farmhouses and farm life in oil paint.

In this industrial age, Heeze-Leende gave a veritable colony of painters the inspiration to transform what they considered romantic farm life into Masterpieces of painting. Of the more than 20 artists, Jan Sluijters and Henriette Pessers are the best known.

Because many 'paid' for their accommodation in Heeze with paintings, works by the painter colony can still be admired in some restaurants and galleries.

Of course, over time many of those idyllic spots have disappeared, but in all four village centers the rural past is still clearly recognizable.


Sterksel is the smallest village, but in 1915 there were grand plans to turn this place into a luxurious garden village. A start was even made, by reclaiming land and draining Turfven and Peelven. For this reclamation they used oxen as traction, hence the statue of the ox in the middle of the village and the name Ossenrijk, during the annual carnival. Unfortunately, the initiator went bankrupt in 1923, so the grand plans never materialized.

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In Leende, archaeological finds and Roman remains have been found, showing that this village was already inhabited in prehistoric and medieval times. Absolutely recommended is the Sint Petrus' Banden church in Leende, a Gothic cross basilica with built-in tower. You can get a guided tour of this special church tower by appointment. Between 1648 and 1798, the church was used for Protestant worship services and city council meetings. On the special button tower is the, in Leende well known "blaos" this ensures that the church is clearly visible from all sides. The local carnival association is therefore called the Lindse Blaos.

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In Heeze, christened "the Pearl of Brabant" by painters, you will find the historic castle, an authentic monument within the Netherlands, dating back to the 13th century and still inhabited today. Its history goes back to the 12th century, when the seigniory of Heeze, Leende and Zesgehuchten already existed. In the years that followed, the village was separated and reunited with Leende. Visitors go back in time in the Bergkorenmolen Sint Victor, situated on a 7-meter mountain and therefore one of the highest mills in the Netherlands. Famous is the annual theater parade the Brabantsedag, where the many chariot groups show an exceptional rolling total theater to the public.

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Leenderstrijp is a small village in the province of North Brabant. Located in the municipality of Heeze-Leende, Leenderstrijp is a picturesque village with a rich history. The village is surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes and offers a peaceful and picturesque environment for visitors.One of the main attractions in Leenderstrijp is the Sint-Janskapel. This chapel dates back to the 17th century and is an example of traditional Brabant architecture. It is a popular destination for pilgrims and tourists interested in the history of the region.

Although today Leenderstrijp lives mainly from agriculture and tourism, in the past there also lived teutes and falconers, who sometimes made it to considerable wealth. Both professions emerged from the 17th century and gradually disappeared in the 19th century.

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