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Vegaquemada (Municipality, Castilla y León, Spain)

Last modified: 2016-04-12 by ivan sache
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Flag of Vegaquemada - Image by Antonio Gutiérrez (VexiLeón website), 10 March 2015

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Presentation of Vegaquemada

The municipality of Vegaquemada (467 inhabitants in 2012; 7,295 ha; municipal website) is located in the northeast of the Province of León, 25 km from Cistierna and 40 km from León. The municipality is made of the villages of Vegaquemada (97 inh.), Candanedo de Boñar (21 inh.), La Devesa de Boñar (58 inh.), La Losilla y San Adrián (59 inh.), La Mata de la Riba (59 inh.), Llamera (27 inh.), Lugán (77 inh.) and Palazuelo de Boñar (82 inh.).

Vegaquemada emerged around the San Adrián de Caldas monastery, founded in 920 near a healing fountain by Count Guisvado de Boñar, from the Braóliz lineage, and his wife Leovinia. The tradition says that King Alfonso IV conveyed there a Council and that San Adrián became a resting place cherished by the nobles.
The villages that were merged into the municipality of Vegaquemada on 1 January 1837, all located in the Adrián valley, formed the biggest part of a territory known as Hoya de Adrián. However, their feudal status was not homogenous. La Devesa de Adrián, La Mata de la Riba and Llamera belonged to the Royal domain, with proper jurisdiction, and to the Valdedios monastery, as granted by Alfonso IX in the early 13th century. Candanedo, Palazuelo de Adrián and Vegaquemada belonged to the jurisdiction of Adrián, ruled by the Guzmán. La Losilla and San Adrián belonged to the San Pedro monastery of Eslonza. Lugán had its own jurisdiction, purchased from Philip II.

The church of Vegaquemada, locally known as "the cathedral in the mountains", was erected in 1952-1954, superseding the old Romanesque church from the 11th century. Designed by the architect Juan Torbado Franco, the church was consecrated on 5 September 1954 by Luís Almarcha Hernández, Bishop of León. The building of the big church was completely funded by Pablo Díez Fernández (1884-1972), born in Vegaquemada and emigrated to Mexico, where he became a wealthy trader. When leaving for Mexico, Díez Fernández promised to improve his birth village; rather than building his own house in the village, he founded a school, water supply, and, eventually, the church.

Ivan Sache, 3 March 2014

Symbols of Vegaquemada

The flag of Vegaquemada, adopted on 7 October 2013 by the Municipal council, is prescribed by a Decree adopted on 5 March 2014 by the Municipal Council, signed on 7 March 2014 by the Mayor, and published on 21 March 2014 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 56, pp. 18,750-18,751 (text).
The flag, which was designed by Ángel Fierro del Valle and validated by the Chronicler of Arms of Castilla y León, is described as follows:

Display and proportions of the stripes.
A white central cross dividing the flag's area into four equal quarters, with a central quadrilateral located over the cross' vertical arm.
Four rectangular lateral quarters, except in the inside part:
- upper left and lower right quarters: blue, Pantone blue 286;
- upper right and lower left quarters: green, Pantone green 356.

Dimensions of the stripes.
- stripes of the central cross: 10% of the vertical area;
- lateral quarters: 45% of the vertical area for each of the quarters;
- central white quarter located over the cross' vertical arms: 60% of the vertical area.
In the central white quadrilateral, is printed or embroidered the municipal coat of arms of the Municipality of Vegaquemada, in full colours.

The flag, selected among five proposals submitted by "a professional in that matter", was officially unveiled on 4 May 2014. Blue represents the river that waters the municipality. Green symbolizes the agricultural production, the main source of employment in the area.
[Diario de León, 6 May 2014]

The coat of arms of Vegaquemada is prescribed by a Decree adopted on 6 July 1987 by the Government of Castilla y León and published on 24 July 1987 in the official gazette of Castilla y León, No. 116 (text).
The coat of arms, approved by the Royal Academy of History (Boletín de la Real Academia de la Historia 1997, 184, 2:394,), is described as follows:

Coat of arms: Purple, a monastery or, a bordure argent four lions rampant of the first. The shield surmounted by a Royal crown closed.

The monastery represents the San Adrián de Caldas monastery. The lions in the bordure recall that the place was once the balneare (spa) of the Kings of León.
[Municipal website]

Ivan Sache, 9 April 2014