So, you’re going out for a Sunday drive. You travel down the street, you make a left turn on Aragorn… what’s that you say? You don’t have streets in your neighborhood named after Tolkien characters? Well, plainly you don’t live in the town of Geldrop, in the Netherlands.
As residents of the area can tell you, every street in this neighborhood is named after a character or location from Professor Tolkien’s Middle-earth. You’ll find names from The Hobbit, The Lord of the Rings, and even The Silmarillion.
The story has caught the attention of media outlets across the internet of late (yours truly first read it on The Huffington Post), but it was certainly no surprise to our very own Rosie-with-the-ribbons, who lives in this very neighborhood. She has recently been discussing the news phenomenon on her blog (Click Here), as well as posting some wonderful pictures of the various street signs on Facebook. I asked her via email about living in the neighborhood:
The Laan van Tolkien is the main road in the neighbourhood. Going from one end to the other. And on both ends some shopping. One end has a grocery store, the other end a garden center.
I think most people who live here don’t know anything about Tolkien. They might have seen the movies. But what I hear from my close neighbours most haven’t read the books and surely don’t know anything about the other names like Yavanna and Varda. Well, before The Hobbit most won’t even have heard of Bofur, where I live.
I’m not sure about the origin of the street names. The first buildings were constructed in the later years of the 1990s… the person who was responsible for the street naming was a big Tolkien fan and somehow managed to get the Tolkien-names being picked as street names.