Around 50,0000 inhabitants live in the still growing city, which offers numerous leisure opportunities and cultural offerings. A strong economy benefits from the good transport connections and the healthy mix of different economic sectors. Traditionally, the city is characterised by the furniture and timber industries, large food manufacturers as well as mechanical engineering and vehicle construction companies.
In the medieval Hanseatic period Wiedenbrück belonged to Osnabrück as a so-called "Beistadt". Many of the half-timbered houses in the town date back to the times of the influential travelling merchants. The largest half-timbered house in the town has been restored as the "Hansehaus". In Wiedenbrück's old town in particular, some houses can still look back on a long trading tradition. Equally widespread are farmhouses, whose wide deels offered space for carts and agricultural goods.
Many centuries-old half-timbered houses adorn Lange Straße in particular. There, the origin of house 27 was recently dated to 1417. It probably served as a pilgrims' hostel. The "Ankervilla" from 1473, today a restaurant, is considered the second oldest half-timbered house. Many others date from the 16th to 18th centuries. The model of a three-wheeled water mill is a reminder of the old mill where the town's grain was ground from 1250 to 1969.