Conches-en-Ouche, picturesque and full of cars

Conche-en-Ouche is a commune in Eure (Haute-Normandie), south of Le Neubourg and west of Evreux. It had 4.982 inhabitants in 2006. It’s old name was Conques.
Between Le Neubourg and Conches (there’s no “en-Ouche” on the road signs) lies the “Campagne de Neubourg”, a huge plain.

Conches itself consists mainly of a narrow shopping street, that’s full of parked cars. Some of the houses in this street are beautiful old timbered houses, with very modern, colourful window displays. It is very difficult to get photos there. Everywhere are cars, at the abbey, the church, the town hall, the keep and the city wall. Conches seem to have more cars than inhabitants and they are all in the center of the town.
At least the Conchoises seem to have humour.

Lesebrühe in Conches, eigenes Foto, Public Domain

bouillon of reading in Conches, own photo, Public Domain

Vorführung von SM-Broten in Conches, eigenes Foto, Public Domain

Pain Show in Conches, own photo, Public Domain

First sight we visited was the keep (donjon). Next to the keep is a shop for lawnmowers and when we arrived there, someone was just testing a loud lawnmower, very idyllic.

At the keep there’s a convenient sign giving information about the keep’s age and history. It was built 1035 by Roger I of Tosny, 1364 conquered by english troops, 1441 conquered again by english troops and destroyed 1591 in the French Wars of Religion.

Donjon in Conches, eigenes Bild, Lizenz: CC by

Donjon in Conches, own photo, licence: CC by

Donjon mit Makke, eigenes Foto, volles copyright

Donjon and Markus, own photo, full Copyright

The keep itself is dilapidated and it’s forbidden to go inside. But there is a path around the ruin. Behind the keep was a surprise awaiting us. It was as if God (if he exists) has poked his finger in the landscape. The keep was built on a ridge over a kloof, nothing for people with acrophobia.

On the other side of the keep are some parts of the city wall and a well, that had been filled up. At the end of the path lies the Mairie (town hall).

Blick auf den Donjon von der Mairie aus, mit Markus, eigenes Foto

Donjon, seen from the Mairie, with Markus, own photo, full Copyright

zugeschütteter Brunnen an der alten Stadtmauer von Conches, eigenes Bild, Public Domain

filled well at the old city wall, own photo, Public Domain

Behind the town hall stands the church Sainte-Foy (Saint Faith) and in front of the town hall stands the statue of a boar, no idea why it’s there and when it was made.

Wildschweinstatue an der Mairie in Conches, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

boar at the Mairie in Conches, own photo, licence: CC by

The gothic church Sainte-Foy was built in the 16th century. There’s a convenient sign in the church, that’s informing the tourist about the history of the church. The first church in Conches was built in the 11th century by Roger I on the base of an older chapel. Roger I also donated the relics of Saint Faith. That church was destroyed in the 15th century.

Kirche Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

church Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Dach von Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

roof of Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Wasserspeier auf Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

gargoyles on Sainte-Foy,own photo, licence: CC by

Wasserspeier auf Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

gargoyles on Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Wasserspeier auf Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

gargoyles on Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

In the church is the tombstone of the philosopher William of Conches. The stone is in a very bad shape, someone seems to have tried to rescratch the head of William but has done a bad job.

The interior of the church is nevertheless very impressing. It contains a lot of sculptures, wonderful wood carvings (for example a pulpit made in 19th century) and beautiful windows showing detailed biblical scenes.

Kanzel von Sainte-Foy, eigenes Bild, Lizenz: CC by

pulpit of Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

mit Schnitzereien verzierter Holzpfosten in Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

carvings on a wooden pole in Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence:CC by

Taufbecken in Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

baptismal font in Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Relief aus dem 15. Jahrhundert in Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

relief (15th century) in Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Statue von Saint Pierre (Apostel Petrus) in Sainte-Foy, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

statue of Saint Pierre (Saint Peter) in Sainte-Foy, own photo, licence: CC by

Two 15th century artworks were stolen from the church in 1976. Reproductions are shown in the church and visitors are asked to look for the artworks.

Reproduktion des gestohlenen Triptychons, eigenes Foto, Public Domain

Reproduction of the stolen Triptych, own photo, licence: Public Domain

Reproduktion der gestohlenen Skulptur La Trinité, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: Public Domain

Reproduction of the stolen sculpture La Trinité, own photo, licence: Public Domain

After we had visited the church we went to the hospital. It had been a benedictine abbey, that was built in the 11th century. As usual it was full of cars there. Outside were only some arcs with grotesque faces of stone visible.

Krankenhaus von Conches, wenn nicht an der einen Seite Abbaye dranstünde würd mans kaum glauben, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

hospital of Conches, if there wasn't written Abbaye on it, one nearly wouldn't believe it was one, own photo, licence: CC by

Abtei in Conches, da sieht man noch ein paar Reste, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

Abbey in Conches, own photo, licence: CC by

steinerne Fratze unter einem Bogen an der Abtei, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

grotesque face under an arc of the abbey, own photo, licence: CC by

On the way back to the car I found another piece of the city wall on the other side of Conches, that is also a ridge above a valley.
Finally we ate some sanwiches (very German) in a strange park without alleys, in which chives was growing in front of the statue of Maurice Quentin de La Tour.

was vom Foto der Stadtmauer blieb, nachdem ich die Autos abgeschnitten hatte, eigenes Foto, Public Domain

that was left of the photo of the city wall after I cut the cars, own photo, Public Domain

Maurice Quentin de La Tour im akkuraten Schnittlauchpark, eigenes Foto, Lizenz: CC by

Maurice Quentin de La Tour in the neat chives-park, own photo, licence: CC by

Creative Commons License
The article Conches-en-Ouche, picturesque and full of cars (except the weblinks) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 UK: England & Wales License.
The licences of the photos are mentioned in their captions.

One thought on “Conches-en-Ouche, picturesque and full of cars

  1. […] February 23 the post office was opened again. Travellers to Paris still had to take a carriage to Conches-en-Ouche. On March 6 the last Germans left Bernay, the city sighed with relief and the French administration […]

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