Tanneries H. Schotte & Fils


At the end of the 19th century Pieter-Jozef Schotte starts ‘Tanneries H. Schotte & Fils’ together with his sons Achiel and Hippolyte. A tannery converts animal skin into leather.

After the founder died, with his son Hipollyte in the management the company flourish in the 1930s. He modernized the equipment and made it a first class company. A special tanning technique they use is unique in the world. This mineral tanning method uses chrome. Chrome tanning is faster than vegetable tanning and produces stretchable leather which is excellent for use in handbags and garments. In the 1936 Schotte even opened a second tannery in Congo, Africa.


The son of Hyppolyte, Paul, then takes over. But after a tragic accident he died and left the company to his family in law. After these changes things didn’t improve for Schotte. They went bankrupt in 1998. After years af abandonment, Schotte was demolished in 2013. I took these photos from ‘Tanneries H. Schotte & Fils’ in 2006.

Built 1930s
Abandoned 1998
Demolished 2013
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