Urban layout of Bieruń Stary
Bieruń was granted a town charter in 1387 by the Prince of Opava and Racibórz, Jan II Żelazny. The layout of Bieruń Stary is an example of a typical plan of a medieval new town, which was created in connection with the colonization campaign. It is an almost square-shaped market square with two streets emerging from its corners at right angles and a neighbouring parish church on the eastern side. The present development of the square - a set of single-storey tenement houses with varied elevations - is the result of the erection of brick buildings after the second town fire, which took place in 1845. The main trade route from Mikołów to Oświęcim crosses the square of Bieruń on a diagonal line.
In 1966, the urban layout of Bieruń was entered into the register of monuments of the Silesian Voivodeship.
Between 2004-2005, the market square in Bieruń was renovated. At that time, a sundial, the monument of Silesian Insurgents (modelled on the pre-war one), the outline of the historic town scales and the well with the figures of “Utopce” were placed there.
In 2005, the square was awarded a distinction in the competition for the Best Space in the Silesian Voivodeship.
The Utopce (Watermen) well
In 2004, an utoplec (Waterman) made its home in the market square in Bieruń. It can be seen in the place of a well existing until the 1940s, in three forms: a young and an old utoplec and a duck.
The utoplec is one of the most famous creatures from Silesian legends. According to the story, he has a frog’s face, green skin and hair, membranes between his toes, and one of his legs ends in a hoof. He lives near water. The designer of the whole well is an artist from Bieruń, Roman Nyga. The sculptures of the drowning men were made in bronze by Stanisław Hochół from Goczałkowice. Both men are graduates of the Academy of Fine Arts in Kraków. The construction and architectural design were done by Marek Skałkowski and the architect Grażyna Lasek.
The economic boom of Bieruń took place in the mid-16th century when the town was granted market privileges. At the time, people traded cattle, horses, salt, grain, wool and fish bred in local ponds. Crafts, smithery, the textile industry and shoemaking developed.
The market square in Bieruń served as a marketplace. There was a building of the municipal scales, where customs fees were collected and calculated after weighing goods transported by merchants. The place where it was erected is indicated by the stone pillars next to the sundial.
The Silesian Insurgents’ Monument
The monument is a replica of the one that had been erected here in the 1920s. At that time, after three uprisings, a part of Upper Silesia was annexed to the Polish State. During Nazi occupation, the monument was destroyed and a cannon was placed on the pedestal in its place. After the war, the monument dedicated to the memory of the fallen insurgents and designed by Augustyn Dyrda was erected there again. In 2004, it was decided to restore the monument to its original form. The author of the project was an artist from Bieruń, Roman Nyga. Currently, the monument plays an important role in the celebration of anniversaries and other national holidays.
Coats of arms of the twin towns
From 1975 to 1991 Bieruń was a part of the city of Tychy. After regaining its administrative independence, the authorities of Bieruń started making efforts to establish contacts with towns in the Czech Republic and West Germany. As a result of these efforts, in 1997 the first partnership agreement was signed with the Municipality of Gundenfilgen in Baden-Württemberg.
In 1998, the same partnership was established with a municipality in Moravia in the Czech Republic - Moravski Beroun. In 2005, a partnership agreement was signed with the Municipality of Ostrog in Ukraine, followed by the French Municipality of Meung sur Loire in 2008.