History

Hanover was established around 1100 and became the residence of Heinrich der Löwe (Henry the Lion) later that century. An early Hanseatic city, by the Reformation it had developed into a prosperous seat of royalty and a power unto itself.

A link was created with the monarchy of Britain in 1714, when the eldest son of Electress Sophie of Hanover (a granddaughter of James I of England – James VI of Scotland), ascended the British throne as George I while simultaneously ruling Hanover. This British–German union lasted until 1837.

In 1943, up to 80% of the centre and 50% of the entire city was destroyed by Allied bombing. The rebuilding plan included creating sections of reconstructed half-timbered houses and painstakingly rebuilding the city’s prewar gems, such as the Opernhaus (Opera House), the Marktkirche church and Neues Rathaus (New Town Hall). A scale model of the wartime destruction can be seen in the lobby of Neues Rathaus.