UNIque houses: Over-Engh

Unique because all residents have a WUR/Wageningen connection.
From the left: Femke, Bob, Marta, Merel, Coretta and Geert. Photo: Guy Ackermans

There are houses and there are weird and wonderful houses. In this feature we visit the latter. This time: Over-Engh.

House: Over-Engh
Residents: Merel (teacher at WUR), Geert (Wajo), Bob (student), Femke (PhD student), Marta (alumnus and Science Shop assistant), Coretta (alumnus and Resource editor)
Unique because: the house is 170 years old and the residents are not all students (but do all have a WUR/Wageningen connection)

Coretta: ‘Now we are in the town centre, but once this was the edge of Wageningen with a view “over the Eng”, hence the name. It was built in 1852 by a rich tobacco farmer.’
Marta: ‘That is why we still love it! Fun fact: Over-Engh has its own Wikipedia page.’
Coretta: ‘The roof was shot to pieces in World War II. You can still see the bullet holes in the attic.’
Geert: ‘It’s been a shared house since the 1970s. In the stairwell you can photos of ex-residents, going back to the days of black-and-white. My colleagues in Amsterdam think I live in a commune, haha.’
Marta: ‘Maybe it was like that in the 70s. There was a fairtrade craft shop, and it was a merry bunch of lefties and anarchists.’
Geert: ‘Just like you!’
Marta: ‘It really is, we’re organized here!’
Femke: ‘We eat together regularly and there’s always coffee in the morning; the loud coffee maker wakes everyone up. Sound carries incredibly in this house, you can hear everything. We also organize odd-job days, to get things done in the house or in our huge garden, where Bob recently dug a pond.’
Geert: ‘Yes, thanks for all the mosquitoes, Bob…’
Bob: ‘Anything for biodiversity.’
Merel: ‘I’m a lecturer at WUR and Bob takes classes with me.’
Geert: ‘And Merel is my half-aunt. That’s how it goes here.’
Coretta: ‘There’s someone missing here, by the way: Chico, the most theatrical cat in Wageningen. He starts “singing” at five o’clock in the morning until he gets food, and he does it again in the afternoon.’ (Everyone starts imitating Chico’s operatic singing).
Bob: ‘And don’t forget our hens and chicks, in the garden.’
Coretta: ‘We also throw parties regularly. This year it was the Beastly Glitter Gala.’
Marta: ‘We are so cool, haha.’
Coretta: ‘Speaking of which, in the winter it’s so cold here that you feel like keeping your coat on.’ Merel: ‘We sometimes say we’ll still be living here when we’re grandparents…’

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