Gildeskål kommune
View of Inndyr
View of Inndyr
Official logo of Gildeskål kommune
Nordland within
Gildeskål within Nordland
Gildeskål within Nordland
Coordinates: 67°01′24″N 14°04′38″E / 67.02333°N 14.07722°E / 67.02333; 14.07722Coordinates: 67°01′24″N 14°04′38″E / 67.02333°N 14.07722°E / 67.02333; 14.07722
Established1 Jan 1838
Administrative centreInndyr
 • Mayor (2011)Petter Jørgen Pedersen (Ap)
 • Total664.71 km2 (256.65 sq mi)
 • Land622.27 km2 (240.26 sq mi)
 • Water42.44 km2 (16.39 sq mi)  6.4%
Area rank170 in Norway
 • Total1,998
 • Rank328 in Norway
 • Density3.2/km2 (8/sq mi)
 • Change (10 years)
Time zoneUTC+01:00 (CET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+02:00 (CEST)
ISO 3166 codeNO-1838
Official language formNeutral

Gildeskål is a municipality in Nordland county, Norway. It is part of the Bodø Region and the traditional district of Salten. The administrative centre of the municipality is the village of Inndyr. Other villages include Forstranda, Lekanger, Mevik, Mårnes, Nygårdsjøen, Saura, Storvika, Sør-Arnøy, Sørfinnset, and Våg.

The 665-square-kilometre (257 sq mi) municipality is the 170th largest by area out of the 422 municipalities in Norway. Gildeskål is the 328th most populous municipality in Norway with a population of 1,998. The municipality's population density is 3.2 inhabitants per square kilometre (8.3/sq mi) and its population has decreased by 2.3% over the last decade.[2][3]

General information[edit]

Fugløya ('Bird Island')

The municipality of Gildeskaal (later spelled Gildeskål) was established as a municipality on 1 January 1838 (see formannskapsdistrikt). In 1853, the eastern (inland) district of Gildeskaal (population: about 1,150) was separated to become the new municipality of Beiarn. This left Gildeskaal with about 2,400 residents. The municipal boundaries have not changed since.[4]


The municipality (originally the parish) is named after the old Gildeskaal farm (Old Norse: Gildaskáli) because the first church was built there (Old Gildeskål Church). The first element is the plural genitive case of gildi which means 'feast' or 'banquet' and the last element is skáli which means 'hall'.[5]

Coat of arms[edit]

The coat of arms was granted in 1988. The arms show a silver or white cup on a blue background. The arms are canting since the meaning of the name Gildeskål refers to a banquet hall.[6]


The 900-year-old Old Gildeskål Church

The Church of Norway has one parish (sokn) within the municipality of Gildeskål. It is part of the Bodø domprosti (arch-deanery) in the Diocese of Sør-Hålogaland.

Churches in Gildeskål
Parish (sokn) Church Name Location of the Church Year Built
Gildeskål Gildeskål Church Inndyr 1881
Old Gildeskål Church Inndyr 12th century
Saura Church Saura 1884
Mevik Chapel Mevik 1910
Nordstranda Chapel Lekanger 1963
Sørfjorden Chapel Sørfinnset 1957


View from Sandhornøya, in Gildeskål

Gildeskål is a coastal municipality that encompasses part of the mainland as well as many islands. Major islands include Fleina, Fugløya, Nordarnøya, Sørarnøya, and Sandhornøya. The southern part of the municipality includes part of the Saltfjellet mountains and the northern part of the municipality borders the Saltfjorden and the Vestfjorden.

There are many lakes in the municipality including: Fellvatnet, Langvatnet, Litle Sokumvatnet, and Sokumvatnet.


All municipalities in Norway, including Gildeskål, 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.[7] The municipality falls under the Salten District Court and the Hålogaland Court of Appeal.

Municipal council[edit]

The municipal council (Kommunestyre) of Gildeskål is made up of 17 representatives that are elected to four year terms. Currently, the party breakdown is as follows:[8]

Gildeskål Kommunestyre 2015–2019
Party Name Name in Norwegian Number of
 Labour PartyArbeiderpartiet7
 Progress PartyFremskrittspartiet2
 Conservative PartyHøyre3
 Centre PartySenterpartiet3
 Socialist Left PartySosialistisk Venstreparti1
 Local ListsLokale lister1
Total number of members:17

Buildings and structures[edit]

Sandhornøy Bridge connects the island of Sandhornøya to the mainland. The Kjellingstraumen Bridge crosses the outer end of the Beiar Fjord.

There is a VLF-transmitter in Gildeskål that is used for sending messages to submerged submarines (call sign: JXN, frequency: 16.4 kHz). It uses as antenna multiple wires spun between two mountains (photo). The transmitter building is located at 66°58′58″N 13°52′23″E / 66.98278°N 13.87306°E / 66.98278; 13.87306 (JXN transmitter).


  1. ^ "Navn på steder og personer: Innbyggjarnamn" (in Norwegian). Språkrådet. Retrieved 2015-12-01.
  2. ^ Statistisk sentralbyrå (2018). "Table: 06913: Population 1 January and population changes during the calendar year (M)" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2019-02-02.
  3. ^ Statistisk sentralbyrå. "09280: Area of land and fresh water (km²) (M)" (in Norwegian). Retrieved 2019-02-02.
  4. ^ Jukvam, Dag (1999). "Historisk oversikt over endringer i kommune- og fylkesinndelingen" (PDF) (in Norwegian). Statistisk sentralbyrå.
  5. ^ Rygh, Oluf (1905). Norske gaardnavne: Nordlands amt (in Norwegian) (16 ed.). Kristiania, Norge: W. C. Fabritius & sønners bogtrikkeri. p. 182.
  6. ^ "Civic heraldry of Norway - Norske Kommunevåpen". Heraldry of the World. Retrieved 2019-01-12.
  7. ^ Hansen, Tore, ed. (2016-05-12). "kommunestyre". Store norske leksikon (in Norwegian). Kunnskapsforlaget. Retrieved 2019-01-01.
  8. ^ "Table: 04813: Members of the local councils, by party/electoral list at the Municipal Council election (M)" (in Norwegian). Statistics Norway.

External links[edit]