Most of the trees here are less than 75 years old

During World War II, the occupying German forces constructed an anti-tank trench straight across the Haagse Bos woodlands for the purpose of defending Clingendael and Scheveningen against land-based attacks by the Allies. Bunkers were built in the woodlands and are still visible as mounds in the landscape.

A large proportion of trees were felled for this. Many of the remaining trees that stood just beyond the bastion in the Haagse Bos woodlands were felled for firewood during the Hongerwinter (the Dutch Famine) of 1944/1945. Ultimately, only around thirty percent of the woodlands survived the war.

Launching station for V2 missiles

The Haagse Bos was used as a launching station for V2 missiles at the end of the war. British bombers mistakenly bombed the Bezuidenhout neighbourhood on 3 March 1945 in an Allied attempt to neutralise the launching installations. Around five hundred people perished in this mistaken bombing.

Back to top