Ureterp

Ureterp (Oerterp) is one of the older farmer's settlements on the higher sand ridges to the north of the Alddijp (Koningsdiep). The village lies some kilometres south-east of Drachten, on the way from Beetsterzwaag to Siegerswoude.

Ureterp (Oerterp) is one of the older farmer's settlements on the higher sand ridges to the north of the Alddijp (Koningsdiep).  The village lies some kilometres south-east of Drachten, on the way from Beetsterzwaag to Siegerswoude.

Due to its vicinity to the crossing of the  A7 (Heerenveen - Groningen) and the N31 (Leeuwarden - Oosterwolde) motorways, Ureterp is easy to get to.  Despite the proximity of Drachten, which plays a core function, Ureterp plays a core function for the surrounding villages  (Frieschepalen, Siegerswoude en Wijnjewoude).

After Gorredijk, Ureterp is Opsterland's second village.  Due to its favourable location, it is home to many commuters.  Ureterp is a linear settlement or regional village.  In contrast to other linear settlements, it didn't develop due to peat exploitation.  Its elongated shape is a result of its position on the sand ridge between the original Drait and the Alddijp.  The first settlement was on this sand ridge, and must be a thousand years old by now.  The name Ureterp (Urathorp, with the Frisian Ur = above) is explained due to its location as regards the Alddijp.  Ureterp is upstream, and 'Terp' here means village. Ureterp gained renown among archaeologists nationwide due to the fact that in 1943, at the Prinsendobbe along the Mounleane, remains of reindeer hunters dating back to the upper Palaeolithic period (approximately 10,000 to 9,800 BC, so just after the last ice age) were found. Because comparable remains were found in Hamburg, this culture is known as 'Hamburg culture'.

Ureterp, with its rapidly growing village centre on both sides of the Weibuorren, is a remarkable and varied whole.  With as its highest and central point, the old village church on Selmien.  The late-medieval church has on its south side medieval brickwork of completely yellow bricks of considerable size.  The rigid saddle roof church tower, just like the church, dates back to the 13th century.  Although the Church has always had a real tower, a double bell frame was built in 1766. This has been renovated a number of times, and holds two bells from 1948.

You can find more information about Ureterp on www.oerterp.nl.