Västanfors Homestead museum, open-air museum by the lake.
The site is open 10am-6pm
all year around. Theme park for children with canal and locks. Exhibitions in the houses.
Famous Christmas activities. The Ekomagasinet old-fashioned shop open daily 11am-6pm, +46 (0)223-175 78. The Coffee-house, also old-fashioned open daily 9am-6pm, +46 (0)223-104 76. Tourist information at the site during summer +46(0)223-197 00.
Tourist office in town +46 (0)223-131 00.
Information: Fagersta tourism.
Manor house annex, Exhibitions, Canal, Locks, Guest harbour, Shop, Café, Gardens, Theme park for children, Walking paths, Rapids, Power station, Laker
The area surrounding the manor house at Västanfors contains a wealth of sites of interest. Here you can visit the estate run by the local heritage association. Some of the buildings have been moved here from elsewhere, whilst the homestead site is in its original setting. The falls area, which includes the canal, locks, dams and power station, are all there, too.
Also on the estate is the homesteader’s dwelling, a detached two-storey timber house that once belonged to the Slohagen farm. It comprises a large main room, together with a kitchen and smaller room. Upstairs is a large banquet room. Roughly south of the house is a soldiers’ tenement belonging to the village of Aspbenning. You can also visit Mor Stinas Stuga (Mother Stina’s cottage) which illustrates a typical working-class home c.1900.
There are two outbuildings and two barns on the estate.
Between the farm and the manor house can be seen a granary from 1870, which once belonged to the manor house. Today, the Ekomagasinet building houses a reconstructed village shop and a theatre museum. Diverse exhibitions are held on the first floor.
The Västanfors manor house is in a delightful setting on the Strömsholm canal. The ironworks owners and managers with links to Västanfors have lived and worked here since the 17th century. The smelting house was demolished in the 1920s, as the entire operation had been moved to the Fagersta works. The old manor house was pulled down to make room for the rebuilding of the Strömsholm canal in the mid-1800s, the cut for which went straight across the estate. The two annexes from the 1850s and 1870s were rebuilt in their original locations. A splendid summerhouse from the 19th century can be seen in the park.
Malla Löwenhielm was the last person to inhabit the north wing. She died in 1954 and her home has been preserved for posterity as a museum, which offers an accurate illustration of an upper-class home at the end of the 19th century. The lock-keeper’s cottage near the annexe to the manor house has been renovated and is now used as a ceramics workshop. North of the church you will find a school museum, which is accommodated in Fagersta’s first schoolhouse (1854).
The Fagersta works, which acquired the Westanfors smelting works in 1873, had a power station built at the end of the century which distributed electric power to the new cogging or blooming mill at Fagersta. The original installation built in 1900 at Västanfors has been preserved. The plant ceased operating in 1949, when the installation of a new power station was completed alongside the old one. The consulting engineers were Qvist & Gers of Arboga. The drop at the water fall is 4.2 metres, and the water flows through a channel into the turbine sump. Two vertical turbines, coupled to two power generators above, each generated 175 hp.
In 2004, a bakery was added to the collection of buildings, and in 2005 a new visitor centre was built in the harbour (now used by visiting pleasure craft) below the lock. A coffee shop serving home-made bread and sandwiches (smörgåsar) is located near the car park and entrance.
The nearby lodge can cater for larger parties and provide light refreshments. Inside the Ekomagasinet building is a souvenir shop in the form of an old village shop. Both the coffee shop and the souvenir shop are open all year round.