Wervik is one of the oldest towns in Belgium and was know to the Romans, who called it Viroviacum. It was a staging post on the great Roman road from Bavay to Cassel. During the First World War, the town was occupied by the German Army for four years. Wervik was for the Germans what Poperinge was for the British: a place to rest, close behind the lines. However, the town’s greatest claim to fame lies in a very different direction: tobacco! Wervik tobacco was once famed for its strength, although there are only a very few tobacco fields now remaining. Happily, the story of the industry’s past has been preserved in the Tobacco Museum, which also charts the history of smoking.
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