Dutch Town Has Street Names Inspired by Lord of the Rings

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Geldrop is a small town in the southern part of The Netherlands, with a population of 28,000. Not much information on this place is available online, but it seems like a perfectly ordinary Dutch town. But there is something special about it (apart from the fact that ‘Geldrop’ sounds like some kind of candy).

The names of all the streets in one of the neighborhoods of Geldrop are actually taken out of J.R.R Tolkien’s epic trilogy, The Lord of the Rings. We have absolutely no idea why, or whose genius idea it was, but it’s one of the few places in the world with such bizarre street names. I’d understand if it were just one or two streets, but the entire neighborhood consists of Lord of the Rings references.

At the heart of the city is Laan von Tolkien (Tolkien Avenue). Then the streets branch out into names of hobbits, elves, dwarves and even a few ents (the talking trees). If you want to see for yourself, go to Google Maps and search for Geldrop. Or, you could just follow this link.

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LOTR Fans’ Fantastic Real-Life Hobbit House

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Now here’s a house that all you LOTR fans out there wouldn’t mind spending a few nights in. Or maybe, the rest of your lives. If you’ve been an admirer of the hobbits who inhabited Middle Earth in J.R.R. Tolkien’s fantasy world, this house is something you’ve got to see. The 600 sq.ft. dwelling was built by architect Peter Archer for his clients – a Chester County couple with grown kids. Lifelong fans of J.R.R. Tolkien, they wanted the house as a worthy shrine for the rare books and Tolkien-inspired memorabilia collected over a period of 30 years of travel in the U.S. and abroad. The stone cottage is tucked away into the Pennsylvania countryside, a picturesque location befitting the hobbit-style house.

Before he took up the project, Archer wasn’t too well versed with the nature of Tolkien’s works, but he caught on rather quickly. “Upon starting the project I read the book The Hobbit and watched the Lord of the Rings movies, but more importantly, looked at the range of writings by Tolkien, including amazing sketches he had done to illustrate his work,” Archer says. “I remember at the start saying that we would be happy to design the structure but we were not going to do a Hollywood interpretation. We wanted it to be timeless. It was built in 2004 but looking at it, you could think it was from 1904 or 1604.” Working closely with another Pennsylvania architect Mark Avellino, he was able to “interpret Tolkien and create the beautiful details that make this such a special building.” He also credits the host of builders and landscape artists who put in every effort possible into the making of what has come to be known as the ‘Hobbit House’.

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Artist Recreates LOTR Bag End with 2,600 Balloons

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If you think balloon animals are cool, this inflated replica of the Baggins family residence, from the Lord of the Rings, will probably blow you away. Famous balloon artist Jeremy Telford recently spent 40 hours recreating Bag End from 2,600 balloons.

We’ve featured some pretty cool balloon-made stuff here on Oddity Central, from balloon costumes, to life-size dinosaurs and even giant spiders, so this latest creation by Jeremy Telford is in good company. The talented artist from Pleasant Grove, Utah spent a whole weekend twisting balloons and tying them together, ultimately transforming his living room into a unique replica of Bag End, the famous Bagging residence, featured in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Lord of the Rings. Sure it’s not as accurate as the one depicted in Peter Jackson’s movies, but I’d like to see anyone do a better job, using only balloons. Paying great attention to details, Telford created the actual Hobbiton smial, as well as interior accessories like the small candle chandelier, a cozy fireplace and all the furniture described by Tolkien in his books. In a comment left on The One Ring community website, Jeremy said: “I planned it out a little bit. I googled 18th English furniture styles to give me a platform to jump from. I read the Hobbit again (not a chore!) to gleen what I could of the description of Bag End. Then I did some initial sketches before starting the big build.”

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Real-Life Hobbit Shire Exists in the Hillsides of Montana

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The Hobbit House of Monatana, located in a man-made shire built by LOTR enthusiast Steve Michaels and his wife Christine, is a must-see attraction for any self-respecting Tolkien fan.

This isn’t the first time someone builds a real-life hobbit house, but this particular house situated in the hillsides of northwest Montana is actually a tourist guesthouse available for only $245 a night. So if you’ve always wanted to see what it’s like to live as a hobbit, now’s your chance. But unlike the simple homes featured in J.R.R. Tolkien’s novels, the Hobbit House of Montana comes with a modern king-size bedroom, designer kitchen with customized granite counters, HD Blu-Ray television set, XM Radio, three phones and WiFi. The LOTR theme, however, is everywhere, from the little rock handles on the drawers, to the Gandalf stained glass doors, or The One Ring dangling from the loft.

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LEGO Masters Recreate Middle-Earth, All of It!

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A group of LEGO and The Lord of the Rings fans have managed to create an awe-inspiring LEGO version of Tolkien’s Middle-Earth, spanning over 200 square feet.

The idea for this amazing project was born at BrickWorld 2010, where Chris Phipson and Mark Kelso started talking about a collaboration. After going through some ideas, and concepts, Chris said “Hey, I got it… let’s do Lord of the Rings.” Obviously, Mark’s reply was along the lines of “You mean like… a few of us build Minas Tirith or Barad Dur?” But his LEGO loving friend had something much bigger in mind – he wanted to recreate ALL of Middle-Earth using LEGO.

When they first heard Chris’ monumental idea, most of the people involved in the project thought he was crazy, but after a bit of probing, the plan was put into action. As you can expect in a project of this magnitude, things didn’t exactly go smoothly from start to finish, but what’s important is many members of the LEGO building community helped out as much as they could. And, after a whole year of planning and building, the LEGO model of Middle-Earth was finally completed and showcased at BrickWorld 2011.

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Real-Life Hobbit House

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And it’s not just for show guys, people actually live in it!

Ever since he was a little boy, Simon Dale dreamed of having a house in the countryside. And even though he’s no architect, or even a construction worker, together with his father-in-law and the help of passers-by, Simon managed to build this amazing Hobbit House in just 4 months. Believe it or not this baby only cost around 3,000 pounds to build.

Though it looks absolutely incredible, aesthetics were not Mr. Dale’s primary concerns. He tried to make his dream home as environment-friendly as he possibly could and hopes he set an example for others. Simon Dale and his family actually moved into the Hobbit House, but they are not stopping here. Their next project involves building nine other similar houses in Pembrokeshire, Britain.

For more info check Simon Dale’s official website

Here are a few specifications of the Hobbit House:

  • Dug into hillside for low visual impact and shelter
  • Stone and mud from diggings used for retaining walls, foundations etc.
  • Frame of oak thinnings (spare wood) from surrounding woodland
  • Reciprocal roof rafters are structurally and aesthaetically fantastic and very easy to do
  • Straw bales in floor, walls and roof for super-insulation and easy building
  • Plastic sheet and mud/turf roof for low impact and ease
  • Lime plaster on walls is breathable and low energy to manufacture (compared to cement)
  • Reclaimed (scrap) wood for floors and fittings
  • Anything you could possibly want is in a rubbish pile somewhere (windows, burner, plumbing, wiring…)
  • Woodburner for heating – renewable and locally plentiful
  • Flue goes through big stone/plaster lump to retain and slowly release heat
  • Fridge is cooled by air coming underground through foundations
  • Skylight in roof lets in natural feeling light
  • Solar panels for lighting, music and computing
  • Water by gravity from nearby spring
  • Compost toilet
  • Roof water collects in pond for garden etc.”

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