Carcassonne, Le Pont Vieux
[carpontvieux]

Carcassonne, le Pont Vieux
Coat of arms of Carcassonne, the Cité   Carcassonne,
Le Pont Vieux
 
Le Pont Vieux (the old bridge) that replaced the medieval structure previously built upstream, where the roman bridge lay, dates back to the early 14th century. Work was already underway in 1315, and was probably completed no earlier than 1320. A special tax was evied to cover the expense. 

Carcassonne, Le Pont Vieux
 
The twelve, full-centre arches of the Carcassonne bridge have opening diameters of unequal lengths ranging from 10 to 14 metres. This is evidence that the work was completed arch after arch, depending on the resources. The bridge was divided in two by a stone arch based on an upstream and downstream cutwater, which marked the limit between the two communities of the Cité and the Lower Town. In this spot were signed peace treaties following internal divisions which often stirred the population of both towns of Carcassonne. The appearance of the bridge changed only after 1820. In those days, some fine railings were still visible there, flanked with two elegant sidewalks. We know for a fact that two arches collapsed in 1436, but in addition to repairs performed then, several other sections were reworked in 1559 and even later, without the bridge being deprived, however, of its primitive appearance. It was the restoration of 1820 that most altered its former shape.
 
 
  When you enter the bridge, the chapel of Notre-Dame de la Santé (Our Lady of Good Health), is the only remaining trace of the Town's oldest hospital. It was originally defended on the left bank by a huge headblock which surrounded nearly all of today's suburb.

On the Cité side, it was connected to the fortress defences through a line of flanked curtain walls.

In 1999, a study was conducted by the Town of Carcassonne and the Architect from the Monuments de France in connection with the French public services. A project to rehabilitate the eastern end of the Old Bridge and the entry to the rue Trivalle was elaborated.

The ramp, once remodeled will clear the magnificent façade of the old cloth mill which became a royal factory in 1696.


Carcassonne

The 13th arch located east of the bridge has been cleared; the ramp between rue de la Barbacane and rue Trivalle, as well as the area between the front of the buildings and the garden of Pierre et Maria Sire have been surfaced and graded, thus clearing the ground for an esplanade used as a car-park in the shade of freshly planted plane trees. When you enter the bridge, the chapel of Notre-Dame de la Santé (Our Lady of Good Health), is the only remaining trace of the Town's oldest hospital. Although restored on the outside and reworked on the inside, it remains a fine specimen of 15th century architecture.

Every year on the night of July 14th, more than 700.000 spectators are huddled together on the banks of the Aude to see the amazing fireworks. During more than 25 minutes you can admire flames of blue, white, yellow, green red, gold and a grandiose crowning piece. More than 1200 impacts in 6 seconds over 600 metres of frontage.

More than 700.000 spectators are huddled together on the banks of the Aude to see the amazing fireworks. During more than 25 minutes you can admire flames of blue, white, yellow, green red, gold and a grandiose crowning piece. More than 1200 impacts in 6 seconds over 600 metres of frontage.

In 1998 the Town of Carcassonne celebrated the centennial of the setting ablaze of its legendary Cité: on 14 August 1898, the "Cadets de Gascogne", a company composed of some of the most prominent members of the worlds of literature, art and politics, had arrived in Carcassonne. On this occasion the Town had organised a big celebration to honor these prestigious visitors, including a historical reenactment, concerts, balls, illuminations, parades, artillery gun salutes, a torchlight march, banquets, etc.

To conclude the celebrations, at nightfall the entire Cité was set ablaze and became one huge incandescent block of stone. The flaring-up of the Cité using Bengal lights was originally the idea of Achille Rouquet (1851-1928), founder of the Revue Méridionale. He was also a painter, an engraver, a poet and a félibre, i.e. a writer of langue d'oc. After the Cité's first flaring-up, he requested from the Mayor of Carcassonne, Monsieur Jules Sauzède, that this action be repeated each year. This event now takes place every year on the night of July 14th ' "Le Quatorze Juillet', and has achieved worldwide fame.

J.P. Cros-Mayrevieille
– Les monuments de Carcassonne La Cité de Carcassonne
– History and description by Joseph Poux René Descadeillas
– Carcassonne – Editions SAEP Colmar-Ingersheim

 
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Pleasure begins first thing in the morning in a pastoral atmosphere of gardens as you admire the medieval city. Then comes the vitamin-packed breakfast followed by a moment of well-being in the swimming pool, heated from Easter ro November, or in the Jacuzzi open year round. In the evening, reading in the lounges, conversations on the terrace with an aperitif and the glow of the sunset off the ramparts or in the cosy setting of the bar. Here, everything is an open invitation to relax with the family, friends or even with your pet. Hôtel Montmorency is the second building of Hôtel du Château*** in which you’ll find the same hospitality along with a bar, lounges, gardens, terrace, swimming pool, Jacuzzi and monitored private car-park....


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The hotel Les Trois Couronnes in Carcassonne, is facing the remparts of the medieval city. A privileged position, on the banks of the river “Aude” At 10 minutes walking from the fortress the hôtel des trois couronnes has 70 rooms; 25 Standard rooms on a courtyard, fitted with bathroom, hair dryer, toilets, satellite TV, Canal+, telephone, mini bar, non smoking rooms, WIFI, indoor swimming pool, laundry on request... 44 Panoramic rooms with balcony and view on the medieval City, fitted with bathroom, hairdryer, toilets, satellite TV, canal+; telephone, mini bar, non smoking rooms, WIFI, indoor swimming pool, laundry on request... The junior suite is luxuriously furnished with modern furniture, flat screen tv, shower, bath and with views over the city of Carcassonne...


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