As of 1388, the belfry, an entirely circular tower initially known as the “Tour de Saint-Jacques” (Tower of St. James) was built in limestone. The foundations were built on stilts in order to raise it to 4 floors. It took on its current features in the 16th century with the reduction of the height of the walls and the removal of the crenellations, surrendering its last 2 floors to the steeple that rises above the roofs of Namur. The inscription that can still be read today at the top of the Belfry, “S.P.Q.N.R 1733” (Senatus Populus Que Namurensis Restauraverunt), indicates the date of completion. After the destruction of the Collegiate Church of St-Pierre-au-château in 1745 on the heights of the Citadel, which harboured the town bell, the Tower became known as “Le Beffroi” (the belfry). In 1841 it was fitted with a communal public clock. This hourly clock was named “cloche-porte” (clock- gate) because it commanded the opening and closing of the city gates. In front, the Beffroi Gallery houses temporary art exhibitions of the City of Namur (free entrance).
On 1st December 1999, UNESCO registered the belfry on the list of “World Heritage of Humanity”.
Rue du Beffroi, Namur, Belgique