The origins of the château de Boussu can be traced back to the end of the 10th century, when a siege conducted by Othon II indicates the presence of a fortress. It was destroyed in the 15th century and its remains used as foundations for the 16th-century castle built when the lord of Boussu commissioned Jacques du Brœucq, the architect for Mary of Hungary, to construct a prestigious residence in the Renaissance style that was a strong feature of the time.
The castle is known thanks to descriptions from the 16th and 17th centuries, as well as from gouaches by Adrien de Montigny painted at the turn of the same centuries and the excavation work conducted since 1991. A plan dating from the end of the 17th century details a building surrounded by a moat, fronted by an entrance turret flanked by two towers and a drawbridge. This led to a quadrilateral space almost 100 metres on each side built mainly in brick – stone was used for the lower, weight-bearing or structural parts – arranged around a main courtyard. Quadrangular towers emphasised the corners on the outside, while a U-shaped building was added to the south-east. Only the entrance turret and its Renaissance décor remain: the building was partly dismantled in 1702 and remained practically abandoned until it was demolished at the beginning of the 19th century. It was then incorporated into a new dwelling that was destroyed, apart from its remarkable neo-Gothic chapel dating from the end of the 19th century, in 1944.
Exceptional heritage site of Wallonia