Former mayor of the municipality of Noordenveld, Hans van der Laan, received the ‘Eremedaille in Zilver’ tonight. He received the medal for his exceptional commitment to Veenhuizen.

    There will be few people who have so emphatically committed themselves to the name recognition of ‘prison village’ Veenhuizen as Hans van der Laan. When he, as mayor, called out in 2005 to fight for a place on the UNESCO World Heritage List, the response was lukewarm. Sixteen years later, the moment had arrived. Tonight that was celebrated once again with residents and entrepreneurs from the village.

    Mayor Klaas Smid presented the medal of honor to his predecessor, who wore the mayor’s necklace from 2001 to 2015. At the opening of the Prison Museum, he expressed his wish to have Veenhuizen on the Unesco World Heritage List and a year later, real work was done on this. Van der Laan acted as a booster and remained involved in the village even after his mayorship.

    Smid: “Hans has told me that he has always experienced it as a party to dedicate himself to Veenhuizen.” It is therefore no wonder that the former mayor was presented with the medal at a festive gathering in the Prison Village.

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