Archive for April 10th, 2019

April 10, 2019

Chapelle ND de Rocamadour, Camaret sur Mer!

And let’s go further deep into my adopted Brittany and the coast and a symbol for them and, us. This is the sea at its best and traditions that still holds strong. I ,again, written bits of pieces on it before in my blog but feels deserves more.

Therefore, here is my take on the Chapelle Notre Dame de Rocamadour in pretty Camaret sur Mer.

camaret sur mer

The Notre-Dame-de-Rocamadour Chapel is located in Camaret-sur-Mer in Finistère, dept 29 of my Brittany. It is located near the Vauban Tower, on the Sillon.

camaret sur mer

The first Chapel of Notre-Dame-de-Rocamadour was built in 1183. The oldest part of the present Chapel dates from 1527. Rocamadour means the rock in the middle of the waters. The Chapel, like the Vauban Tower, is located on a rock connected to the Esplanade Jim Sévellec by the “Sillon

In particular, even difficult to pinpoints its beginnings ,it is mentioned of a Notre Dame of Rocamadour in a brief of Pope Gregory XI, dated 1372 and granting indulgences to the faithful who would contribute to the reconstruction of the monument. Which suggests that before there would have been a chapel. It seems, however, that the construction can be dated, given the inscription on the west gable in abbreviation of use at the time: “the year 1527 was founded the Chapel of Notre-Dame du ROC”.

The steeple was beheaded during the battle of Trez-Rouz  in 1694, by an Anglo-Dutch canonball. A legend tells us that Notre-Dame-de-Rocamadour took revenge by returning the canonball to the guilty ship, which sank it was probably for this reason that it was never rebuilt. The arms of the Lords of Crozon, successors of the Rohan and represented by the Goulaine family, remained intact despite the decrees of the Convention(tribunal of the French revolution), ordering to stripped them. They are still  visible below the clocheton.

The present Chapel of Notre Dame de Rocamadour was built in a Breton Renaissance style from 1610 to 1683, when an arc of discharge was added that isolates the choir and the sacristy.

Inside, all the antique furniture disappeared during the fire of 1910. The chapel was rebuilt in 1911. In the past, the roof was held by beams of the 16C, adorned with dragon heads in wood. The pulpit is from 1914-1915. The statue of the Virgin is modern. The Cross in front of the pulpit is the former cross of the cemetery. Today, you can see ex-votos hanging in the nave. Likewise, a set of old photographs representing the forgiveness and life of Camaret in the early 20C. The Baroque-style high altar is that of the old church of St. Rémi. The Notre Dame pardon of Rocamadour takes place on the first Sunday of September.

camaret sur mer

A bit on the meaning of this Virgin.  Our Lady of Rocamadour Notre Dame de Rocamadour)  is a black Virgin, with her eyes closed and with the child Jesus sitting on her left knee. It is a Virgin maiestas Mariae, with hieratic expression and like absent. The Mother and the Son seem crowned. The Virgin of Rocamadour is linked to the Camino de Santiago de Compostela,(the Way of St James in Spain)  which contributed to her devotion in Spain and Portugal, where she is known as Nuestra Senora de Rocamador. On the Breton coast she is revered as the patron Saint of sailors and fishermen.

camaret sur mer

A nice place to visit all around the Chapel worth the detour into the peninsula of Crozon to reach pretty Camaret sur Mer. Some webpages to help you plan your trip here are

City of Camaret sur Mer on religious heritage

Tourist office of Crozon peninsula on Camaret sur Mer things to see

Unofficial Tourist site on Crozon and the Chapelle

Hope you enjoy the sights of pretty Camaret sur Mer, worth a detour to this off the beaten path of the Finistére, Bretagne, France!

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

April 10, 2019

Arsenal or Naval Base of Brest!

Ok so once again going to tell something different, it can be a tourist destination more of a military naval base but can be visited with prior arrangement of the tourist office of Brest and will be the highlight of your trip here me think. Of course, I have mentioned in previous posts, but will like to tell you more about the Naval Base of Brest.

The Brest arsenal or military port of Brest is a naval base of the French Navy consisting of a set of military and naval installations located in the Penfeld River in Brest, dept 29 of Finistère in the region of Brittany. This is the second French naval base, after that of Toulon. In the popular workers’ language the local Brestois, call it the “arsouil” (do not want to say the meaning here but soldiers needs). It is right in city center after the castle naval museum of course!

brest

The Penfeld, in the confines of the military port, is almost entirely bordered by wharves, which however present the major drawback of not being attached directly because of the level of the rock that discovers in many places at low tide. There are also positions, mainly on the left bank, by means of overflowing, in order to allow some small units to moor in Penfeld, and to use some facilities such as the great crane.

brest

There four spikes were to be attached to the south pier of the military harbor, parallel to each other, arranged in an angle to the pier and rooted every 250 meters, the first spur being rooted at about 600 meters from the rooting of the pier. Their common length of 270 meters and the depth available to their right would allow accommodating the largest boats of the Allied Marines, especially the aircraft carriers, hence their name. Brest is no longer a port-base for a French aircraft carrier. The usefulness of the spikes is limited to the reception of large ships, and of Allied boats in stopover or hulls. Along the pier, reservations made for the reception of no. 1 and 2 spikes are still discernible. This basin, located in the so-called Troulan Cove, on the left bank of the Penfeld, is currently named pool no. 1. It is the oldest of the forms of Brest. So unique, it was called the form of Brest. Basin No. 1 was built in 1683, modified in 1745 and 1864. Its dimensions are 115 meters in length for 25 meters width at the level of the docks.

brest

Until 1966, France was part of NATO’s integrated command. As such, France had to have facilities for the reception of Allied marine boats, including American aircraft carriers. For the arsenal of Brest, this obligation was done by the creation of four pitches, the ears of aircraft carriers. The two basins of Pontaniou are located in the Cove of Pontaniou, at the confluence of the Penfeld and the Valley housing the rue Saint-Malo, now crossed by the building of the Salou an area located upstream of the current Pont de L’Harteloire, where currently are basins 4, 6 and 7 of the arsenal.

Not much used upstream of the pont de Recouvrance, these stations welcome however downstream of this bridge the old naval rigging, the port’s skippers and the trans rades providing services between Brest and the Crozon peninsula. Bordered by eight lines of pontoons launched perpendicularly to the masterly of the wharf, this wharf is the privileged area for the docking of the units of the National Navy based in Brest, in particular for the minehunters, the avisos, or the buildings-school. Two parallel pontoon lines are embossed in front of the underwater base and have a similar role.

brest-pont-de-recouvrance-nov12

One of the most spectacular workshops is certainly the cordage (Corderie), if only because of its length.  In Brest, there were two cordages, after the oldest one, installed along the Brest basin, burned down: the low cordage and the high cordage stretched under the prison and the maritime hospital. The Madeleine building, or Pontaniou prison, was built during the first decade of the 19C. Originally intended for the sailors and workers of the arsenal (and not the convicts), it was a model prison, with a certain comfort whose flagship point were the individual cells. Located just beyond the lift of Pontaniou and the building to the Lions,( bâtiment aux Lions) it was outside the confines of the arsenal.  Transferred to civilian use in 1952 the building is still standing today

Brest

The building to the Lions, the name given comes from the ten lead lion heads that serve as gargoyles. It is also referred to as the lifting of Pontaniou.  This building, located at the bottom of Pontaniou Cove, had a double objective: to close the Pontaniou Cove , and to promote communication between the plateau of “the Cayenne” ,where was the second depot of the crews of the fleet, and that of the Capuchin.  The lifting of Pontaniou is a four-story dike bridge, 58 meters long, 10.5 meters wide and 20 meters high. The site successively housed the convent of the order of the Capuchin, a hospital, a barracks and in the 19C, large industrial workshops.  Retrofitted to the community in 2010, the workshop buildings were conserved and rearranged to accommodate commercial and cultural activities (e.g. Media Library and Cinema).

The mole of the viaduct allows to ensure the connection between the workshops of the Capuchin plateau and the docks. This imposing construction is elevated to the north of the plateau to which it is connected by a 30 meters long arch. This is one of the most representative monuments of the naval arsenal steam period.

In all an impressive naval base right coming up to the city center of Brest!

brest

Some webpages as usual from to help you plan your trip here worth the reservation.

Tourist office of Brest on the naval base guided tour

Official Finistere dept 29 tourist office on Brest

Official Brittany tourist office on Brest

There you something different off the beaten path and well worth the visit; the Naval Base of Brest is unique for a visit.

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

%d bloggers like this: