A day at the zoo

During World War II, Scheveningen and the Clingendael estate turned into a fortress, which needed to be able to withstand Allied attacks, both at sea and on land. The area was surrounded by anti-tank walls, anti-tank trenches and other barricades. An anti-tank trench ran from here on the edge of Malieveld right through the Haagse Bos woodlands.

The Hague zoo, which was located where the Provinciehuis (regional government office) now stands, had to make way for it. The animals were moved to Artis and Blijdorp. Initially, the bastion was still accessible between February and September 1943 via a few passages. However, it was then sealed off. Wooden emergency bridges across the anti-tank trench were dismantled, ferries had to cease operating. Malieveld retained access. A special permit, a so-called Ausweis, was needed to gain entry.

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