Vegårshei is a municipality in Agder county, Norway. It is located in the traditional district of Sørlandet. The administrative center is the village of Myra. Other villages in Vegårshei include Mo and Ubergsmoen.[3]

Vegårshei kommune
View of the lake Vegår
View of the lake Vegår
Flag of Vegårshei kommune
Official logo of Vegårshei kommune
Vegårshei within Agder
Vegårshei within Agder
Coordinates: 58°46′32″N 08°49′56″E / 58.77556°N 8.83222°E / 58.77556; 8.83222Coordinates: 58°46′32″N 08°49′56″E / 58.77556°N 8.83222°E / 58.77556; 8.83222
CountryNorway
CountyAgder
DistrictSørlandet
Established1 Jan 1838
 • Created asFormannskapsdistrikt
Administrative centreMyra
Government
 • Mayor (2015)Kirsten Helen Myren (Sp)
Area
 • Total355.67 km2 (137.32 sq mi)
 • Land321.77 km2 (124.24 sq mi)
 • Water33.90 km2 (13.09 sq mi)  9.5%
 • Rank#249 in Norway
Population
 (2022)
 • Total2,131
 • Rank#272 in Norway
 • Density6.6/km2 (17/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years)
Increase +10.2%
DemonymVegårsheiing[1]
Official language
 • Norwegian formNeutral
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
ISO 3166 codeNO-4212
WebsiteOfficial website

The 356-square-kilometre (137 sq mi) municipality is the 249th largest by area out of the 356 municipalities in Norway. Vegårshei is the 272nd most populous municipality in Norway with a population of 2,131. The municipality's population density is 6.6 inhabitants per square kilometre (17/sq mi) and its population has increased by 10.2% over the previous 10-year period.[4][5]

HistoryEdit

 
Farm area in Færsnes
 
Haukenes area

The parish of Vegaardsheien was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt law). The borders of the municipality have not changed since that time.[6]

The population was at its largest in 1930, population 2161.[7]

NameEdit

The Old Norse form of the name may have been Vigisheiðr. The first element is the genitive case of the name of the lake Vegår (of which the Old Norse form and the meaning of the name is uncertain). The last element is heiðr which means "heath" or "moor".[3][8] Historically, the name was spelled as Wegaardsheien or Vegaardsheien, and sometimes it was abbreviated as simply Heien.

Coat of armsEdit

The coat of arms was granted on 30 April 1987. The official blazon is "Gules a fox sejant argent" (Norwegian: I rødt en sittende sølv rev). This means the arms have a red field (background) and the charge is a fox. The fox has a tincture of argent which means it is colored white most of the time, but if it is made out of metal, then silver is used. The fox was chosen as a representative of the local wildlife and also for the fox farming in the municipality. The arms were designed by Daniel Rike.[9][10][11]

CultureEdit

ChurchesEdit

The Church of Norway has one parish (sokn) within the municipality of Vegårshei. It is part of the Aust-Nedenes prosti (deanery) in the Diocese of Agder og Telemark.

Churches in Vegårshei
Parish (sokn) Church name Location of the church Year built
Vegårshei Vegårshei Church Myra 1808

GeographyEdit

Vegårshei is bordered on the north by the municipalities of Nissedal (in Vestfold og Telemark county) and Gjerstad, on the east by Risør, on the south by Tvedestrand, and on the west by Åmli. The lake Vegår dominates the northern part of the hilly and forested municipality.

GovernmentEdit

All municipalities in Norway, including Vegårshei, are responsible for primary education (through 10th grade), outpatient health services, senior citizen services, unemployment and other social services, zoning, economic development, and municipal roads. The municipality is governed by a municipal council of elected representatives, which in turn elect a mayor.[12] The municipality falls under the Agder District Court and the Agder Court of Appeal.

Municipal councilEdit

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Vegårshei is made up of 21 representatives that are elected to four year terms. Currently, the party breakdown is as follows:

Vegårshei kommunestyre 2020–2023 [13]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)4
 Conservative Party (Høyre)2
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)7
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)4
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 2016–2019 [14]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)6
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)3
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)6
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)5
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 2012–2015 [15]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)6
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)5
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)5
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)4
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 2008–2011 [14]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)3
 Conservative Party (Høyre)3
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)2
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 2004–2007 [14]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)2
 Conservative Party (Høyre)6
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)2
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 2000–2003 [14]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)6
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)5
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)2
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1996–1999 [16]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)6
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)7
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)3
Total number of members:21
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1992–1995 [17]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)2
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)3
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1988–1991 [18]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)8
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)2
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)2
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1984–1987 [19]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)8
 Progress Party (Fremskrittspartiet)1
 Conservative Party (Høyre)3
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)3
 Centre Party (Senterpartiet)2
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1980–1983 [20]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)4
 Joint list of the Conservative Party (Høyre),
Centre Party (Senterpartiet), Liberal Party (Venstre),
and Liberal People's Party (Liberale Folkepartiet)
6
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1976–1979 [21]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)3
 Joint list of the Conservative Party (Høyre),
Centre Party (Senterpartiet), Liberal Party (Venstre),
and New People's Party (Nye Folkepartiet)
7
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1972–1975 [22]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)8
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)2
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)7
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1968–1971 [23]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)8
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)2
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)7
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei kommunestyre 1964–1967 [24]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)1
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)7
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1960–1963 [25]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)2
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)6
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1956–1959 [26]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)8
Total number of members:17
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1952–1955 [27]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)7
Total number of members:16
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1948–1951 [28]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)2
 Local List(s) (Lokale lister)5
Total number of members:16
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1945–1947 [29]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)9
 Christian Democratic Party (Kristelig Folkeparti)3
 Local List(s) (Lokale lister)4
Total number of members:16
Vegårshei herredsstyre 1938–1941* [30]  
Party Name (in Norwegian) Number of
representatives
 Labour Party (Arbeiderpartiet)7
 Joint list of the Liberal Party (Venstre) and
the Radical People's Party (Radikale Folkepartiet)
5
 Joint List(s) of Non-Socialist Parties (Borgerlige Felleslister)4
Total number of members:16
Note: Due to the German occupation of Norway during World War II, no elections were held for new municipal councils until after the war ended in 1945.

EconomyEdit

As of 2019, public administration and the service sector, are most important in regard to employment; the retail industry and entities that have hotel services and those that serve food and beverages, constitute 11% of employment; agriculture and forestry accounts for 9% of employment; manufacturing accounts for 7% of employment—21% including those employed in construction and those employed in the energy sector and [water supply]vannforsyning/ [garbage collection or] renovasjon.[7] Of the inhabitants that are employed, 55% have employment outside the municipal borders.[7]

It is well-suited for hunting and fishing for residents and tourists alike.

TransportationEdit

The Sørlandsbanen railway line runs through the municipality, stopping at Vegårshei Station, just north of the village of Myra. There are several Norwegian county roads that cross the municipality, connecting it to its neighbors. Some of the roads include Norwegian County Road 414, Norwegian County Road 415, Norwegian County Road 416, and Norwegian County Road 417.

Notable peopleEdit

  • Lars Vegard (1880 in Vegårshei – 1963) a Norwegian physicist, researcher into aurora borealis
  • Ole Colbjørnsen (1897in Vegårshei – 1973) a Norwegian journalist, economist and politician
  • Tjostolv Moland (1981 in Vegårshei – 2013 in Kinshasa) a former Norwegian army officer and security contractor

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet.
  2. ^ "Forskrift om målvedtak i kommunar og fylkeskommunar" (in Norwegian). Lovdata.no.
  3. ^ a b Thorsnæs, Geir, ed. (5 April 2016). "Vegårshei". Store norske leksikon (in Norwegian). Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 26 December 2017.
  4. ^ Statistisk sentralbyrå. "Table: 06913: Population 1 January and population changes during the calendar year (M)" (in Norwegian).
  5. ^ Statistisk sentralbyrå. "09280: Area of land and fresh water (km²) (M)" (in Norwegian).
  6. ^ Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå.
  7. ^ a b c "Vegårshei – Store norske leksikon". Snl.no. Retrieved 13 August 2022.
  8. ^ Rygh, Oluf (1905). Norske gaardnavne: Nedenes amt (in Norwegian) (8 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 1.
  9. ^ "Civic heraldry of Norway - Norske Kommunevåpen". Heraldry of the World. Retrieved 16 January 2023.
  10. ^ "Vegårshei, Aust-Agder (Norway)". Flags of the World. Retrieved 16 January 2023.
  11. ^ "Godkjenning av våpen og flagg". Lovdata.no (in Norwegian). Norges kommunal- og arbeidsdepartementet. 30 April 1987. Retrieved 16 January 2023.
  12. ^ Hansen, Tore, ed. (12 May 2016). "kommunestyre". Store norske leksikon (in Norwegian). Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 16 November 2020.
  13. ^ "Tall for Norge: Kommunestyrevalg 2019 - Agder". Valg Direktoratet. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  14. ^ a b c d "Table: 04813: Members of the local councils, by party/electoral list at the Municipal Council election (M)" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway.
  15. ^ "Tall for Norge: Kommunestyrevalg 2011 - Aust-Agder". Valg Direktoratet. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  16. ^ "Kommunestyrevalget 1995" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo-Kongsvinger: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1996. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  17. ^ "Kommunestyrevalget 1991" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo-Kongsvinger: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1993. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  18. ^ "Kommunestyrevalget 1987" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo-Kongsvinger: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1988. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  19. ^ "Kommunestyrevalget 1983" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo-Kongsvinger: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1984. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  20. ^ "Kommunestyrevalget 1979" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1979. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  21. ^ "Kommunevalgene 1975" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1977. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  22. ^ "Kommunevalgene 1972" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1973. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  23. ^ "Kommunevalgene 1967" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1967. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  24. ^ "Kommunevalgene 1963" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1964. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  25. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1959" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1960. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  26. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1955" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1957. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  27. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1951" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1952. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  28. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1947" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1948. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  29. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1945" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1947. Retrieved 12 December 2020.
  30. ^ "Kommunevalgene og Ordførervalgene 1937" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Oslo: Statistisk sentralbyrå. 1938. Retrieved 12 December 2020.

External linksEdit