Curiosities of Auray!!!

Moving right along in my updating of older posts in my blog. Well, did find some places not really told you about out and need to do so more. This is the case of the new text and older pictures for the Chapelle Sainte Hélène and the Hôtel de Ville of Auray. Namely, Saint Helene Chapel and the City/Town Hall of Auray. Hope you enjoy the reading as I

Better known as the Chapelle de l’hôpital or hospital chapel, the Chapelle Sainte-Hélène chapel is one of the oldest monuments in Auray showing 1465. This Hôtel-Dieu or hospital was built in 1651. Like all Hôtel-Dieu, it communicated with a chapel in order to allow patients to hear services from their beds. In 1674, at the request of Pierre Le Gouvello de Kériolet, Counselor in the Parliament of Brittany, the Augustines arrived in Auray. They were hospital nuns. On several occasions, the chapel was transformed into a hospital room to accommodate wounded soldiers and sailors, or victims of the frequent epidemics of the past. In the 19C, the Augustinians and the sick were more numerous , it is necessary to enlarge the chapel.Inside, the furniture and woodwork date from the 19C.

auray chapelle st helene hotel dieu side jul13

In the archives of the city of Auray, the old Hôtel-Dieu or hospital appears in 1609. Two prosecutors run it and must give an account of their management when they leave office. they are forbidden to receive foreigners into the jurisdiction. The doctor, appointed by the city, must visit the hospitals free of charge twice a week. The building includes a room for men, one for women, a bakery, a kitchen, a lean-to, an attic. On November 17, 1794, the Augustines, hospital nuns of Vannes, signed a contract with the town of Auray to take care of the sick. Another building will be added. In 1904, a new hospital was built . It will be replaced by the new hospital center on the Pratel site in 1970, now part of the Bretagne Atlantique Hospital group.

Auray chapelle St Helene hotel dieu inside jul13

The Sainte-Hélène Chapel is open Mondays and Thursdays from 9h to 12h and from 14h to 17h30 and Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays, from 9h to 12h. and from 14h to 18h, This Chapel contains beautiful 18C carved stalls from the Chartreuse de Brec’h, a 19C altarpiece and woodwork, Saint Hélène, invoked in this chapel, is the mother of Emperor Constantine, the first Roman Christian emperor. Tradition says that she discovered the cross of Christ during a trip to Palestine. This is why we represent it with a large cross and we invoke it to find lost objects. The chapel is located at 8 Rue Clémenceau, upper town of Auray.

The City/Town Hall of Auray is located at the Place de la République. This was the first mayor’s office I was service to renew my French passport and my French identity card. This is the Hôtel de Ville in French.

auray city hall front aug19

In 1742, the town of Auray expressed a wish to build the city/town hall next to the covered market or halle. First plans are designed in 1772 at the French East India Company. These were reworked in 1775 . These plans provided for the joining of the building to the covered market and to the audience of the senechaussee, seat of the municipal assembly, which preexisted on the square. The construction was carried out from 1776 to 1782. A campaign to consolidate the belfry was carried out in 2013. In 1907, a building was built as an extension of the covered market, a building which, until 2006, housed the district court. and an Italian theater. The building is constructed from Taillebourg limestone. Its style is typically French , and is inspired by the city/town hall of Rennes, in particular for its belfry.

auray city hall back aug19

The facade on the square, roof and belfry, 18C.  Among the paintings exhibited in the Council Chamber, are the portrait of King Louis XVIII by Jean-Louis Fouqueur after Gérard, canvas and its listed carved wooden frame, 1823. The death of Grégoire, Greek patriarch by Hugues Fourau, canvas and its listed wooden frame, 1826. Portrait in Half-body of the Emperor Napoleon III by Paul Cellier after Wintherhalter, canvas, 1863.

Auray pl de la republique hotel de ville mars12

The city of Auray on its heritage including the above

The Bay of Quiberon tourist office on Auray

There you go folks, a dandy combination of new and old, government and religious/charitable in historical, architecturally stunning Auray. This is in my beautiful Morbihan and lovely Bretagne, of my belle France. Thanks for stopping by and reading me since November 2010!

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

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