|• Mayor||Jan Daelemans (HE)|
|• Governing party/ies||HE and CD&V|
|• Total||76.70 km2 (29.61 sq mi)|
|• Density||160/km2 (420/sq mi)|
Hechtel-Eksel is a municipality located in the Belgian province of Limburg. On January 1, 2018, it had a total population of 12,290 an area of 76.70 km² giving a population density of 150 inhabitants per km².
The municipality was created in January 1977 as a merger of the two former municipalities Hechtel and Eksel.
Battle of Hechtel
For seven days during World War II, from September 6 until September 12, 1944, the town of Hechtel became the front line between German and British troops in what is known as the battle of Hechtel. German troops consisted of the 2nd Hermann Göring Tank Regiment. The 1st battalion was in Hechtel, with the 2nd placed 2km to the east in Wijchmaal. British forces were from the 1st and 2nd Battalion Welsh Guards, Scots Guards 'X'-Company, Grenadier Guards and other supporting units.
During the battle, 62 British and 127 German soldiers were killed with another 250 captured. 35 civilians also lost their lives with most being executed by German troops. The town centre was heavily damaged.
A German Jagdpanther tank knocked out during this battle may be seen at the Imperial War Museum Duxford, although exact provenance is uncertain, its claimed to be one knocked out by Hugh Griffiths and was previously at The Imperial War Museum London. The battle is commemorated every year on the 2nd Sunday of September.
- "Wettelijke Bevolking per gemeente op 1 januari 2018". Statbel. Retrieved 9 March 2019.
- Memorial The Battle Of Hechtel at Traces of war.com
- "Sd Kfz 173 Jagdpanther (Tank Destoyer [sic])". Imperial War Museum Collections. Imperial War Museum. Retrieved 17 February 2012.
- The annual Liberation of Hechtel commemorations
2 “Hugh Lister (1901–44): Priest, Labor Leader, Combatant Officer.” Anglican and Episcopal History 70 (2001): 353–74.
- Media related to Hechtel-Eksel at Wikimedia Commons
- Map of Hechtel-Eksel
- Official website - Available only in Dutch
- Sanicole Airshow official website