After that a fire devastated the bell-tower of Bruges in 1280 the county
prison ('Ghyselhuus'),that was no beeing in use at that time, became the new reunionplace
for the alderman.
In 1376 Count Lodewijk van Male ordered the demollition of this building and its
reconstruction into a prestigious town hall. It was erected under the
command of Jan Roegiers, and it was finished in 1421. It becomes so the
oldest late gothic town hall. It inspired the construction of several other
town halls (Brussels, Ghent, Leuven...).It stand on a rectangular base. Also the
Brugian span, that probably was used here for the first time, was to be
copiied many times.
The late-gothic construction is witness-proof for the economic welfare of Bruges in the
There are many biblic and historical ( counts and contesesses of Flanders)statues in
fassade, under decorated baldachyn. These statues were renovated
several times.Especially during the French Revolution many of the original statues were
demollished. Different musea still posess some peices of the original statues. The statues
were replaced by modern statues after many discussions.
The crenelated parapet is workes out with
oriels. The saddleback roof has on its ridge a
cresting with many roof niches worked out in it.
At the origin the left entrance was situated in the first span. It was
relocated in 1766 in an entrance that was symmetrically situated to the right entrance.
A fire in 1887 caused lots of damages to the interior. Louis Delacenserie
and Jean-Baptist Bethune made several renovations between 1895 and 1905 .
The hall, now known as the 'gothic hall' was created by the junction of the small and
large aldermanshall. This room is richely decorated and posesses a special double
oak wooden ceiling. The boss contains
medaillons with images of prophets, saints and evangelists. The
corbelstone are then decorated with imaages of the seasons and the nature
elements.zijn dan weer versierd met voorstellingen van jaargetijden en natuurelementen. On
the walls there are paintings of the history of Bruges by the hand of Albrecht
De Vriendt. These are such also as the chimneyhood, additionals in the
neo-gothic style. The stone vault of the hall were replaced
by a wooden constructionthat is supported by four composite orders.
During the night the building is marvelously illuminated.