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Fays

Fays paysage .jpg  

It seems that the village, situated at an altitude of 295 m and first mentioned in 1314, gets its name from the Latin "fagi" meaning "the place of the beech". Fays hamlet gave its name to an important family the de Fays, from the early 15th century. This shows that the hamlet had already developed somewhat at that time.

Clinging to the north face of the Hoëgne valley, its small farms and houses follow the natural contours. The hamlet has no firm plan but is marked by two imposing structures: Fays and Neufays châteaux, both situated around two streets describing a rough "y" and opening onto a square. Its two châteaux testify to the patrician presence of the wool merchants who built their homes in the belt of green surrounding Verviers.

Château Fays1.JPG

Fays château overlooks the hamlet and is partially surrounded by a high sandstone rubble wall to which the plaque commemorating the combatants of the last two wars has been affixed and next to which stele 15 was erected. The château was initially owned by the Franquinet family at the end of the 18th century, then by the Simonis family, one of whose children, Ivan Simonis (1769-1829), became mayor of Verviers and gave his name to the textile firm S.A.Y. Simonis. It was in that factory that William Cockerill installed the first mechanical loom for weaving wool in 1797. Next to the château stand an old farm and a chapel built in 1768.

Château Neufays1.JPG

Neufays château was built in 1900 by the architect Vivroux for Mr Louis Simonis.

The hamlet has essentially become a residential suburb of Verviers and has been the home for many years to one of the largest house-building firms in Wallonia, T. Palm.

We cannot leave Fays without mentioning the aerodrome from which gliders pulled by pretty, colourful little planes take off in fine weather. It is possible to take one's first flight here, but advance booking is necessary.