Château of the Dukes of Alençon!

In my trip to this nice town of Alençon, in the Orne dept 61 of Normandy, i saw some nice places and one of the less mentioned attracted me as well. I am a lover of history and the castles are a big part of it especially in Europe. So no surprise went by this one even if just a shell of what it was.

I like to bring back to your attention the nice remainding Castle of the Dukes of Alençon. Right off my parking at Place Foch, (hotel de ville, palais de justice all here) coming on the N12 and D112 by Rue de Bretagne, naturally!


It is very quant to seek a parking (free nice better!) and come right away into the towers of this old castle, I found it very nice welcome to Alençon. The history of the castle is sad as was early destroyed, most of it. However, there are works to use it as a rather better park and events place, already under renovations.

From the old castle of the Dukes of Alençon , there is only the entrance pavilion: the remainder having been destroyed in the course of the centuries, in particular by the will of Henry IV, who saw the important fortresses with a bad eye. The castle of the Dukes of Alençon currently designates the entrance pavilion of the old castle of Alençon, which was destroyed during the first century of Alençon Castle, built by the first two lords of the city, Yves de Bellême and his son Guillaume I , has completely disappeared. There is nothing left of the Giroye Tower, the ditches formed by the Briante, or even a little of the gigantic park that stretched to the forest of Écouves, today reduced to the parc des Promenades of 4 hectares (almost 10 acres).



Located in place Foch, sheltered a prison for two centuries. It is currently the subject of major restoration work which will allow, in the second half of 2019, to develop an urban park in the old promenade courses.

A bit of history I like

In 1113, when Henry I Beauclerc, King of England, Duke of Normandy and third son of William the Conqueror, took Alençon, a dungeon was erected. It was then integrated into a second castle, built by Peter II, Count of Alençon from 1361 to 1404.

In 1592, the château of Alençon was demolished on the will of Henry IV who saw with a bad eye the erection of important fortresses, symbols of the individual power of the Lords and the heterogeneity of the kingdom, especially since France had just been torn apart by the wars of Religion. Only the dungeon and the entrance pavilion remained. In 1782, the dungeon was in turn destroyed. There remained then the castle of the Dukes of Alençon as the entrance pavilion ,still existing to date.



In 1804, the implantation of the Alençon prison house in the building caused important work related to this new assignment modifying the building and its surroundings In 2010, the prison house was transferred to the Croisettes site at Coulaines.



It is a nice silhouette in the city and I hope it will be preserved as much as possible , especially its wonderful towers. You need to visit as soon as possible to see it as is.

Some webpages to show you more and info on seeing it are

City of Alencon on the Castle and heritage in French

TOurist office on parc des promenades old part of castle

Tourist office of Normandy on places to see in Alencon

Another nice spot in Alençon that I like from my latest trip into getting to know more of my belle France. Hope you enjoy the tour.

And remember, happy travels, good health, and many cheers to all!!!


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