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Porsgrunn


Porsgrunn in Norway Porsgrunn municipality coat of arms

Population:
35,755

Areal:
164,6 km2


Porsgrunn Local Directory


Accommodation, Businesses and more pictures from Porsgrunn

Porsgrunn was named after a small shrub called Pors (Myrica gale), which grew on marshy grounds along the banks of the river, where the porcelain factory is today. The area of Porsgrunn muncipality makes the smallest one in the county of Telemark. Porsgrunn muncipality has approximately 35.500 inhabitants and covers a area of 164,6 km2. There are two town centres, Brevik in the south and Porsgrunn in the north. Together with the old countryside of Eidanger it gives a nice change between town and countryside. Porsgrunn´s existence is due to a favourable position and good harbour. The muncipality has an archipelago, forests, lakes and farmland areas. Porsgrunn is very urbanised and more developed industrially than any other part of Telemark and most other parts of Norway.

Porsgrunn has not suffered from catastrophic fires to the same extent and it retains marty of its original buildings, even though fires have claimed victims and other buildings have been demolished in recent years. Osebakken, a part of the town on the east side next to the river, was once the home of affluent ships' masters. It is well preserved and well worth strolling around.

Porsgrunn was originally the name of one of the three small islands located where the Down Town Shopping Mall is now. Porsgrunn has long traditions of being a harbour town, and was described as such in records dating all the way back to the 16th century, but it was not until the 17th century that Porsgrunn became an important seaport for the export of timber.

Moving the customs house from Skien to Porsgrunn in 1653 added to the flourishing harbour activity, and Porsgrunn became a thriving market town. It was granted urban status in 1807, and in 1842, Porsgrunn became an independent municipality.

Porsgrunn is situated near Gunneklevfjord, and at the mouth of the river Telemarksvassdraget or Porsgrunn river (Porsgrunnselva), and is an important center of industry. Originally an industrial park, the peninsula of Herøya, southeast of the city, has today grown into a suburb of Porsgrunn. Famous big industries like Hydro Porsgrunn and STX OSV Norway (Aker Brevik), Yara, among others, have contributed to wealth and prosperity, which in turn makes Porsgrunn of today a centre for industrial research and university colleges, eagerly working for among other projects the protection of natural resources. Not far from the industrial areas you´ll find wonderful nature of various kinds, even nature yet untouched.

PORSGRUND PORCELAIN FACTORY

The porcelain factory is situated near the river in Vestsiden. The company´s production plant is a popular tourist attraction. It is open by prior arrangement to groups who can follow production from clay right through to the finished product, decorated and fired. The factory shop is open all summer. Guided tours of the porcelain factory take place from Mondays to Fridays, at 10:00, 11:00 and 13:00. The tour takes just under an hour and the factory welcomes groups or individuals. Guided tours must be arranged in advance by telephone.

LANGANGEN

The small village of Langangen offers the sea and good swimming and fishing facilities, along with excellent hiking areas. Langangen was earlier divided by European route 18 but in 1979 the road was led over Langangen bridge. Langangen has its own elementary school and chapel. Langangen borders to Larvik.

BREVIK

Brevik is Grenlands summer town. One of Norway´s best protected towns created from wood in the previous century. Brevik is regarded one of the best preserved towns from the sailing ship era. The town is located on the far end of Eidanger (Eidangerhalvøya), and was a former export centre for ice and timber. Wander through the town. Visit our galleries and concerts. Cochegarden was originally built as a private house tor the merchant Jørgen Chrystic in the 1760´s. It is constructed from wood in a local rococo style, a beautiful and harmonious building. Having served as town hall for the market town of Brevik, it now houses the municipal museum´s varied collections. It reflects the town´s associations with shipping and commerce, but also includes a fully furnished grocer´s store from the turn of the century as well as the town´s old pharmacy.

Also to be found is a barber´s shop, post museum and photographic studio from the turn of the century. There are memen toes from the war years 1940-45, from both the resistance as well as from everyday life. Entry outside normal opening times by arrangement.

BATTERIET

Situated on the outermost part of the Sylterøya island in Brevik, "Batteriet" is the site of historic events dating way back, including the beheading of mail robber Ole Berg on October 19, 1838. During the second world war, the Germans built a large bunker here. It is a fine lookout point with a landscaped park.

MARITIME MUSEUM

In the old Customs-house, just next to the Museum, is the new Maritime Museum, with relics from the town´s time as a great shipping community. The same opening hours as for the Porgrunn Museum.

ØVRE FREDNES KULTURHUS

Various exhibitions and sale of painting, graphic design, sculpture ceramics and textiles throughout the year.

CAPTAIN SØRENSEN´S HOUSE

Brevik´s active group have fitted out a gallery in a restored ship´s master´s house, where exhibitions of art and handicrafts are regularly held.

GRENLAND BRIDGE

Grenlandsbrua is Norway´s highest cable-stayed bridge with a tower height of 168 metres. The bridge, which opened in 1996, is on route E18. It crosses the Frierfjord, a fjord which separates the municipalities of Porsgrunn and Bamble. When built, it replaced Brevik Bridge as the primary route across the fjord. Grenlandsbrua is 608 metre long bridge uses cable stayed construction to provide clearance for vessels up to 50 metres in height. The stay cables are arranged in 21 cable pairs with lengths from 84 to 287 metres. The bridge´s span is 305 metres.

FRIERFJORDEN

Frierfjorden is a fjord in Grenland. It stretches from Brevik, and Gunneklevfjord, to the mouth of the Porsgrunn river. At the fjord mouth, Breviksstrømmen, it is about 300 meters across and is crossed by the Brevik bridge. Somewhat further in a new bridge, the Grenland bridge also crosses the fjord, carrying (E18) across Norway´s highest cable stayed bridge. Frierfjord has a great deal of commercial ship traffic to Bamble, Porsgrunn and Skien.

BREVIK BRIDGE

Breviksbrua is a bridge over the mouth of the Frierfjord which connects the municipalities of Bamble and Porsgrunn. On the west side, in Bamble, lies Stathelle, while on the east side lies Brevik. Breviksbrua was opened in 1962, and was a part of E18 until 1996, when the E18 was rerouted via a new bridge, the Grenland Bridge which lies further up the fjord. From the E-18 (Oslo - Kristiansand) turn off at Brevik. The route is well sign posted.

PORSGRUNN MUSEUM

Porsgrunn Museum has built up an extensive and intcresting collection in recent years. Their point of departure was the town's old parsonage which contained the first collections. A number of the town's houses considered worthy of preservation, were gradually erected around it. The collection is being constantly added to and extended and the town's history as a maritime community and home of the famous Porsgrunns Porselænsfabrikk (porcelain factory) is a principal element. Entry outside normal opening hours by arrangement. The ticket is valid for both the Museum and the Maritime Museum.

HISTORY

Industrialization gathered momentum in the 19th century as shipyards and sawmills were built. A necessary economic adjustment towards the end of the 19th century led to the establishment of the Porsgrunds Porselænsfabrik, which began manufacturing china in 1887. The decade from 1910 to 1920 marked the beginning of the iron and metal industry in the area. In 1929, Norsk Hydro built a very large fertilizer factory on Herøya, which has had a strong impact on local economic development.

In 1964, a merger of three municipalities, Porsgrunn, Eidanger and Brevik - resulted in the formation of a new municipality with two centres, i.e. the "southern-style" town of Brevik and greater Porsgrunn. Over the past decade, Porsgrunn has also become a hub of education. Technical instruction began at Skiensfjorden´s Technical College in 1884. Today Porsgrunn is the home of a college of engineering that offers graduate-level courses - The Telemark Regional College.

Porsgrunn is currently Norway´s third largest export harbour, and features a well-diversied industrial, economic and cultural base.

Porsgrunn muncipality is today part of a larger piece of land, called Grenland. In the early Middle Ages Grenland was inhabited by the so called Grenes, and at that time Porsgrunn became an important loading-up place for timber. But the history of Grenland is much older than that, approximately 4-5000 years. All over the municipalities there are a lot of historical memorials as proofs, i.e. rockcarvings, gravemounds and a prehistoric fortress.

ØSTRE PORSGRUNN CHURCH

The church was built in 1760 by Joen Jacobsen, as a rococo-style timber cruciform church. The church is well-known for its beautiful tower and has a valuable collection of chairs. It was restored to its original appearance in 1962. Porsgrunn also has a Catholic church; the only one of its kind in Telemark.

VESTRE PORSGRUNN CHURCH

Vestre Porsgrunn church is a timber church dating back to 1758, built by the well-known local builder Joen Jacobsen. Extension added in 1830 with a sacristy, used for private confessions.

BREVIK CHURCH

Brevik Church was built in 1963. It is a work church with congreation rooms. The altarpiece was painted by Terje Grøstad. The church also has golden leather chairs made by former vicar Alf Kapstad.

INTERNATIONAL THEATRE FESTIVAL

A summmer nights dream.

FOLK MUSIC DAYS

Music competitions, chant-singing, dancing in the Folkets Hus Porsgrunn.

CHILDREN´S DAY in PORSGRUNN

Scandinavia´s biggest one-day event for children, Parades, entertainment for children.

HIKING

Varied terrain with several marked trails in the area of Porsgrunn - Vealøs - Siljan. The landscape is dominated by lakes and rugged forests.

SWIMMING

It is famous for its beautiful coastline, but if you go north you will find mountains and valleys. During the summer the coastline attracts a lot of tourists because of the beautiful beaches and skerries.

GUEST MARINA in BREVIK
Near market place, 25 guest berths. Shower/WC and laundry by the ferry quay. Fuel by Sjøloftet. Groceries, kiosk, bank, etc. Tourist Office.

FISHING

Langangen offers you the sea, and good fishing facilities.

GOLF

Golfclubs in Telemark.