Doetinchem, city in the Achterhoek (Gelderland)

Doetinchem is a medium-sized city in the province of Gelderland and is the capital of the Municipality of Doetinchem. The beautiful location on the Oude IJssel river in the Achterhoek region makes Doetinchem a popular place to visit for tourists from all over the country. Visitors from Germany also like the city because of the pleasant shopping area, the popular catering establishments, the theater and the cinema.


  • General information Doetinchem city (Gelderland)
  • History
  • Professional sports club
  • Shop
  • catering industry
  • Theater Amphion
  • Schools
  • Annual events
  • Traffic and parking
  • Transport
  • Well-known Doetinchemmers


General information Doetinchem city (Gelderland)

The city of Doetinchem has 56,878 inhabitants, has an area of almost 80 km 2 and is located in the Achterhoek region.


The town of Doetinchem was first mentioned in the year 838, as a small settlement. From the eleventh century (1001 to 1100), Doetinchem began to grow more and more and the city received city rights in the year 1236. Doetinchem had a city wall from 1236 to the 17th century, which protected the city against plunderers and robbers. Gates were built in the wall that gave access to the city: the Hezenpoort on the east side, the Hamburger Gate on the south side, the Water Gate on the east side and the Gruitpoort on the north side. Because a major city fire in the 16th century destroyed many dates and details of Doetinchem, not much information has been found about the city in the Middle Ages.


Compared to other cities, Doetinchem did not suffer much during the Second World War. As a city so close to the German border, this is striking. Doetinchem had a small Jewish community in the 1940s and 1945s. They also had to deal with the strict German rules. For example, Jewish teachers were fired from their jobs and Jewish students were placed at another school. A total of 124 Jewish Doetinchem residents were deported to Germany. None of these people survived the labor and extermination camps. In the city center of Doetinchem, in the Boliestraat, there is a monument in memory of the disappeared Jewish Community.
After the Second World War, the town in the Achterhoek grew steadily. The city gained new neighborhoods: Dichteren, Wijnbergen, Heelweg and de Huet.

Professional sports club

Doetinchem has a football club that plays in Dutch professional football. BV De Graafschap was founded in 1954. The colors of De Graafschap are blue-white. The stadium of BV De Graafschap is called the Vijverberg and can accommodate 12,600 fans. De Graafschap has never been Dutch champion. The highest ranking was eighth place in the Eredivisie. The years 1995 to 2003 were the most successful for De Graafschap. During this period the club played continuously in the Dutch Eredivisie. Before 1995 and after 2003, De Graafschap played alternately in the Premier and First Divisions of professional football. In the 2016-2017 season, De Graafschap will play in the first division (Jupiler League). The team’s nickname is: super farmers.


In Doetinchem, shoppers can mainly go to the city center. Hamburgerstraat, Boliestraat, Catharinastraat, Hezenpoort, Waterstaat, Raadhuisstraat and adjacent side streets house the largest share of shops. The better-known retail chains can almost all be found in Hamburgerstraat.

catering industry

The main part of the catering establishments in Doetinchem is centered around the Sint Catharina Church on Simonsplein, in the city center. The Grutstraat is known for its many cozy restaurants, bistros and cafés. The clubs and discos open here during the night weekend hours. There are also numerous establishments on nearby Simonsplein and Waterstraat.

Theater Amphion

In October 1968, the Doetinchem theater, called Amphion, opened on Schouwburgplein. Construction of a new theater started in 2007 on the site of the old bus station, next to the cinema. In September 2010, Queen Beatrix opened the new building. In the new cultural center the public can enjoy theatre, dance, musical, cabaret, music and comedy performances. The building also offers opportunities for business events.


Primary schools

  • Primary school Canada
  • CBS Anderz
  • De Haven Christian Primary School
  • Hogenkamp primary school
  • Montessori Primary School De Pas
  • Primary school Octa
  • De Huet Public Primary School
  • Public Primary School Mosaic Poetry
  • Overstegen Primary School
  • Plattenburg primary school
  • Protestant Christian Primary School Nijman Ijzevoorde
  • Roman Catholic Primary School Closer
  • De Kleine Prins Free School
  • De Wijngaard primary school
  • Wilhelmina Primary School
  • The Sun Tree


Secondary education

  • St. Ludger College: MAVO/HAVO/Atheneum/Gymnasium
  • Ulenhof College: MAVO/HAVO/VWO/Technasium
  • Metzo College: VMBO/MAVO
  • Rietveld Lyceum: MAVO/HAVO/Atheneum/Gymnasium


Vocational education

  • Graafschap College ROC – MBO
  • Iselinge University of Applied Sciences – HBO PABO


Annual events

  • Evening four-day event – May/June. Four-day walking event through Doetinchem and adjacent places.
  • Art Route – June. Event to promote visual art created and exhibited in Doetinchem.
  • City festival – August/September. Four-day event with various festive activities in the center of Doetinchem
  • Fair – May and September. Multi-day fair in the city center in spring and autumn.


Traffic and parking

Doetinchem is located on the A18 highway (Didam – Varsseveld) with three exits.

  • Doetinchem West – Wehl
  • Doetinchem
  • Doetinchem East

Parking in and around the city costs money. A large paid parking lot, called ‘Varkensweide’, is located just outside the city center and can be reached on foot from the center. Doetinchem has three parking garages: Catharina garage, Amphion theater and Mediamarkt Q-Park garage. The duration of parking on the street is unlimited. Mobile parking can be used. Free parking close to the center is available on Stationsstraat (at the Sturko site opposite ‘Doetinchem’ station).


  • City and regional buses: By operator Arriva.
  • Train: By operator Arriva and Breng. Station ‘Doetinchem’ and station ‘Doetinchem de Huet’


Well-known Doetinchemmers

This list consists of famous people who were born, live or have lived in Doetinchem.

  • Gerard van Essen (1924 – 1997): comedian and actor (known as Peppi of the duo Peppi and Kokki)
  • Jan Rietman (1952): pianist / musician
  • Alexander Büttner (1984): footballer
  • Siem de Jong (1989): footballer
  • Luuk de Jong (1990): footballer