Staphorst city hall


Coat of arms
Highlighted position of Staphorst in a municipal map of Overijssel
Location in Overijssel
Coordinates: 52°39′N 6°13′E / 52.650°N 6.217°E / 52.650; 6.217Coordinates: 52°39′N 6°13′E / 52.650°N 6.217°E / 52.650; 6.217
Country Netherlands
Province Overijssel
  Body Municipal council
  Mayor Theo Segers (CU)
  Total 135.69 km2 (52.39 sq mi)
  Land 134.22 km2 (51.82 sq mi)
  Water 1.47 km2 (0.57 sq mi)
Elevation[3] 1 m (3 ft)
Population (May 2014)[4]
  Total 16,396
  Density 122/km2 (320/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Staphorstenaar, Staphorster
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postcode 7715, 7950–7955
Area code 0522

Staphorst ( pronunciation ) is a municipality and a town in the eastern Netherlands.


The villages of Staphorst and its southern neighbour Rouveen came into existence as in the 13th century monks started to bring the bogs and swamps into culture.

All the farms were built along the long road through the bog area. Thus a lengthy row of farms was built, becoming the 7 miles long village of Staphorst-Rouveen. This phenomenon is called in Dutch: lintbebouwing (ribbon urbanization). In many parts of the Netherlands this type of village is quite common, e.g. Vriezenveen, the villages along river dykes in the Netherlands, the so-called moor-colonies in the provinces Drenthe and Groningen, as well as the German regions opposite the border.

According to the website in the section of "Excerpts from the Windmill" in the entry for "Staphorst reunion organizers eager to welcome former residents for April 2011 municipal bicentennial", Staphorst was a Dutch municipality, created through a decree by French emperor Napoleon who merged four smaller entities into a much larger one. The 1811 decree merged the villages of Rouveen, Staphorst and IJhorst along with nearby sparsely populated Hasselter schoutambt (a judicial entity) into a municipality, known since 1818 as Staphorst. Except for a few minor changes, Staphorst's borders have remained unchanged, making it an anomaly in Dutch municipal history.

A specialty for Staphorst is, that after a farmer's death, his land was often divided between his sons. The son who didn't inherit his father's farm built a farm-house for his own behind the other. Therefore, many pieces of farmland are very lengthy, yet narrow (e.g. 1500 x 40 metres). Originally, each piece of land was 125 metres wide.[5]

The farms are of the traditional Low Saxon type. They have green doors and window shutters. Most farms existing now were built between 1850 and 1910.


Staphorst is still a largely orthodox Calvinist village and has one of the highest church attendancy rates of the Netherlands. In 1971, Staphorst became world news due to an outbreak of polio. 39 people (mostly children) became infected with polio.[6] Of these, five died and a number of others became disabled. 20% of residents remain unvaccinated[6] for religious reasons. As a result, Staphorst and other similar areas in the Netherlands are classified as risk areas by the WHO[6] – the only such area in Europe.

The Total Fertility Rate (TFR) in Staphorst at 2.76 was 4th highest in all of Netherlands in 2003.[7] That makes Staphorst a place with one of the highest birth rates in all of Europe.

Staphorster farmhouse in authentic colors

Population centres


Dutch Topographic map of the municipality of Staphorst, June 2015

Demographics (2007)

Staphorst had a sustainable birth rate until the beginning of 21st century. But during the 2000–2007 period, the birth rate dropped considerably.


  1. "College van B&W" [Board of mayor and aldermen] (in Dutch). Gemeente Staphorst. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
  2. "Kerncijfers wijken en buurten" [Key figures for neighbourhoods]. CBS Statline (in Dutch). CBS. 2 July 2013. Retrieved 12 March 2014.
  3. "Postcodetool for 7951DE". Actueel Hoogtebestand Nederland (in Dutch). Het Waterschapshuis. Retrieved 1 April 2014.
  4. "Bevolkingsontwikkeling; regio per maand" [Population growth; regions per month]. CBS Statline (in Dutch). CBS. 26 June 2014. Retrieved 24 July 2014.
  5. (Dutch) Over Staphorst, "Staphorst vroeger," Gemeente Staphorst.
  6. 1 2 3 (Dutch) "Polio in Staphorst," Andere Tijden, VPRO (1 Nov 2007).
  7. "Largest families in Urk," CBS (Statistics Netherlands), Web magazine (1 September 2003 10:00).
  8. CBS/nl
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