An Imperial City since 1220, Dortmund was a flourishing town in the Middle Ages, but the Thirty Years War was to leave deep scars and the town's population dwindled. The actual boom period began in the 19C and its fate has since been linked with that of coal, steel and beer. Nowadays the service sector plays an important role in the town's economy. With a thriving population of over 600 000, it is one of the largest towns of Germany and culture and business are equally prominent on the municipal agenda.
©ARCO/R. Kiedrowski/Arco Images/age fotostockDortmund