Saturday 12 May 2007

Demolition of the house in which Monsieur Heger died

The house where Constantin Heger died on 6 May 1896, Rue Montoyer 72, has been demolished.

After leaving Rue d´Isabelle (around 1880) Monsieur and Madame Heger moved to Rue Ducale, where she died in 1889. He then spent his last years in Rue Montoyer.

Ten years ago I walked to the address, and saw there another victim of speculation on the housing market, which means that the owner simply lets it rot away. A decade ago there were a lot of these hapless houses in Brussels, sometimes with trees growing in their midst.

Quite a lot has changed now, as many of these dilapidated buildings have disappeared, having either been finally destroyed or eventually renovated.

In Rue Montoyer this was the last old building left, and there are only offices in the street now. The spot, which is worthy of a plaque, is still empty, apart from some green bushes, as can be seen on the photograph (taken on 19 April 2007). Unfortunately a photo I took ten years ago did not come out.

The address of the house was given by Clement Shorter about a hundred years ago, although he actually wrote Rue Nettoyer, a street name that has never existed in Brussels. In the absence of an alternative explanation, there seems to be no doubt he meant Rue Montoyer.

Eric Ruijssenaars

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