History of Achel Trappist

Achel Trappist may be not that young than what most people think. Whereas the production of ‘new’ Achel only started recently, the monastery has been brewing great beers in past. But like in many places in Belgium, the Germans destroyed the copper kettles during the First World War. And so it took until 1998 that the monastery –only after they raised money by selling land- started again producing their great beer. But Brother Thomas, ensures the renowned quality of the beer. But how old is the Monastery of Achel? It all started around 1687 by a monastery which was raised in Meerle (near the City of Turnhout) by Jean de Wyse. But like many others monastery’s the monks were expelled during the Revolution and the monastery was sold. In 1838 the vicar of Meerle was dreaming that monks were living again in the monastery. And so he talked to the Father Abbot of Westmalle and yes, it get arranged.

Father Bor was assigned to be the superior of the monks of Meerle. But he was soon feeling he was not ready for the big responsibilities and preferred to become a simple monk again. So only one year later he resigned from his responsibility and he was replaced by Father Aboot Joseph De Moock.

The convent at Achel has been built in 1684 by hermits of Saint-Joseph. During time it was sold ot Jean Diederick. In 1844, the Father Aboot of Westmalle and the Prior of Meersel went to Achel to visit the convent. At that time, the whole domain (buildings, fields,…) were in a really bad condition.

The owner of the property played it hard and it were quite tough negotiations. But with the help of some influential people the monks became again owner of the Abbey in 1845. Renovation and herlocationing of all personnel and religious stuff went well. And only one year later the monks arrived at 20th March 1846 in Achel.