Deurne Canal was part of the Peel defence line, a natural barrier with casemates intended to stop a possible push of German troups to Belgium and France via North Brabant.
Defence Canal part of Peel defence line
Near the Halte area in the border region of Brabant and Limburg still runs the Defence Canal, once part of the Peel defence line. Excavation of the Defence Canal started in 1939 from Griendtsveen, running in a northern direction. The canal flows out into the Raam stream near Mill.
The Peel defence line roughly runs from Weert to Mill. When determining the route, natural barriers such as the Helenavaart, Noordervaart and the swamp-like Peel reserve were made use of. However, the defence line was already broken through on the very first day of the German invasion, May 10th, 1940. The defence was kept up the longest near Mill.
Particularly in the vicinity Griendtsveen, the remains of the Peel defence line are still in good shape and recognizable in the landscape. Every 200 to 300 meters a casemate, once part of the defence line, looms up alongside the canal. These casemates have been marked as listed buildings and fitted out to house bats.
The Defence Canal and Peel defence line is a permanently visible memory of the 1940-1945 period.