Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Oradour-sur-Vayres

Oradour-sur-Vayres was spared the appalling wartime fate of its similarly named near-neighbour Oradour-sur-Glane, as a result of an error made by a  German Waffen SS battalion commander in 1944, when they were retreating from the fighting taking place  after the D-day landings in Normandy. French collaborators told the SS that one of their officers was being held by the Resistance in Oradour-sur-Vayres.  (Wikipedia)

The SS battalion, commanded by  Diekmann, instead sealed off the town of Oradour-sur-Glane, (see my post HERE) having confused it with nearby Oradour-sur-Vayres and ordered all the townspeople – and anyone who happened to be in or near the town – to assemble in the village square. I will not go into details here as my previous post covers the story. Enough to say that Oradour-sur-Vayres escaped the mass murder and these are a few photos that I took there earlier this year.


As always the photos are viewed much better enlarged with a simple click.

Arriving at the town, the first thing I saw was this beautifully laid out roundabout
After parking my car, the building which then took my eye was the church, with the war memorial to the side of it

I walked around to the front of the church, which I have since discovered  has very recently been restored
 I walked inside and took the following photos of the quite lovely interior
  



After leaving the church, I wandered just up the road to the beautiful building that was the town hall (Hotel de Ville)
Looking back down the road you can see the town hall on the left and the church further down on the right 
 A view of the back of the town hall and behind where there is a lovely park
Some views of the smaller typically French streets





I took this photo when driving through the town last month.  I  thought it looked pretty with the flags; they had obviously been doing some celebrating.
A large scale map for walkers and ramblers. Many small towns in France offer this facility to visitors
The official website of the town (in French) http://www.oradour-sur-vayres.fr/

84 comments:

  1. I love your tours of small towns in France. The architecture so different from here.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Gaelyn, that is the same reason as I love your tours, but you also have amazing countryside around you. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  3. was it a non working day when you took this? the town seems so quiet..

    ReplyDelete
  4. What a beautiful town and with such beautiful buildings and much history! I would love to ride my bike around there with you Diane!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Lena no it was a Tuesday as I had just taken a friend to the airport at Limoges. I thought that it was during the 2 hour lunch break, but I see the Petit Marche is open which is surprising. In France most things come to a complete stop between 12h00 and 14h00. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  6. Lyndsey these little towns are just perfect for cycling around. Will meet you there! Diane

    ReplyDelete
  7. I would so love to come there and have you show me around. The streets are so pretty and old. Love the architecture. The church is stunning and must feel sacred when you go in. The pics of the street - are those residential or business.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Thanks for this interesting post Diane - as well as your link a simple twist of fate spared the people of Oradour-sur-Vayres but condemned those in Oradour-sur-Glane ... and the sad thing is that these things are still happening today ... we have learned nothing ...

    Is a 'commune' a community? or village ... what does it mean?

    ReplyDelete
  9. Hi Diane .. lovely photos - France must have suffered so much during the War - we suffered, but we weren't overrun and had to endure those depravities ..

    Beautiful part of the world .. at least it's at peace now .. Hilary

    ReplyDelete
  10. Thank you for this very interesting piece Dianne! I just love your tours.France is a stunning country,I didn't get to see it, as the dog I was supposed to collect in France was delivered in South Africa by the owners instead...they went on a hunting safari with her new owner so I missed out big time!!!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Absolutely lovely! The church is very pretty and so special that it has the war memorial upon its grounds. As always, thank you for this lovely tour!
    Ann

    ReplyDelete
  12. Becca a lot of those place in the streets are residential. I wish you could pop over and take tour with me. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  13. Graham there are over 30 thousand communes in France!!! I guess the closest I can come to describing it is that it is like a municipality. The main town in the commune will have a mayor and he controls a number of villages and hamlets in his commune. He is a V.I.P. and any changes that you should want to do to your property you have to ask permission. The wall that we have just built, he came up and checked before we started and measured that where I wanted to put it was in the correct place. Generally there are no problems so long as you ask first. Build and ask after you could be in big trouble!! Hope this explains your question. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  14. Hilary yes France had a tough time during the war and almost every village has a war memorial. It is a beautiful country and at the moment very peaceful, long may it stay that way Diane

    ReplyDelete
  15. Liesl, I kept meaning to ask you what happened to your trip to collect the hounds. Now I know, sorry you missed so much. You will just have to come and visit me :-) Diane

    ReplyDelete
  16. Ann it was a particularly lovely church, the restoration was stunning Diane

    ReplyDelete
  17. Lovely tour & beautiful photos. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Lovely but somewhat poignant and sombre post, Diane

    ReplyDelete
  19. Amelia's De-ssert thanks for visiting and commenting. Have a great day Diane

    ReplyDelete
  20. Boye By Red, sombre history I agree, but today it is a peaceful happy town and well worth visiting. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  21. A nice post Diane. Some day I hope I can walk a quiet, typical French village street.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Great photographs Diane. Looks like the town is worth a look the next time we go to the airport at Limoges.

    ReplyDelete
  23. What a beautiful french small town in France! And what an interesting story behind it! Nice shots!
    CrazyTourist1

    ReplyDelete
  24. Great photos and a fascinating post.
    As we travelled through France over the years we have come across many places where the memories of the last war are very strong and people still seem very bitter.
    When we attended the November 11th service in our own little village, many people were tearful as the names of those who died for their country were read out, standing by the memorial in the village square. It was very moving.

    ReplyDelete
  25. What a fantastic place.The church is impressive.I love palces like that:)

    ReplyDelete
  26. I love seeing photos of France. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Gaynor it may be a bit far over for you to go to via Limoges. It is very pretty but not a huge amount there. Looked as if there might have been a fairly good restaurant. I thought I had taken a photo of it but......! Diane

    ReplyDelete
  28. Crazy Tourists yes it is an interesting history and one that will not be forgotten by the people of France! Diane

    ReplyDelete
  29. Jean we are hoping to go to the Nov 11 service here this year. Our friend and neighbour organises the local service. He has is own small First world war museum. He even has a bit of a plane with a name on it that was given to his father who helped an American return home after he was shot down very close to here. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  30. kclily glad you enjoyed these photos, it is a lovely little town. Take care and keep well, thinking of you Diane

    ReplyDelete
  31. what a great tour and history lesson

    ReplyDelete
  32. Thanks anni, glad you enjoyed it. Take care. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  33. It has been many years since I have been in France but I thought it was beautiful just as your photos are. I would love to return some day. The narrow streets and churches always fascinated me. Such great history with all! Thanks for the tour!

    ReplyDelete
  34. I would move there in a nano second. What a charming town. We here in the states often forget what happened in Europe with the Germans. When you see a place like this it is hard to imagine anything bad ever happening there!! Thanks for another great tour, Diane!

    ReplyDelete
  35. C'est un plaisir de découvrir avec toi ces régions de France, si représentatives.
    A très bientôt

    ReplyDelete
  36. Thanks for sharing the pretty pictures of the village and especially the confused history. I am fasinated by the the different way the wars affected villiages and citizens in France.

    ReplyDelete
  37. Crazy Tourists it really is a lovely little town. Thanks for the comment. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  38. Pam maybe you will get a chance to return to France one day. It really is a beautiful country. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  39. lostpastremembered you are so right that many places are just forgotten by people in other countries. France will never forget, they are made very aware of what happened with memorials in every town and village. As you say, what a lovely place to live, as are so many of the small towns in France. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  40. Merci Nadji, je suis heureux que tu apprécies ces visites. Bonne journée. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  41. chcmichel where we live, we are right in the centre of where the resistance was. There are many, many stories in this area. I wish my French was better as there are still many 90 year olds around who I would love to be able to sit and chat to. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  42. I love old churches...that stained glass is amazing!

    ReplyDelete
  43. Pam I agree some of the old churches are fantastic. Thanks for visiting me. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  44. A beautiful post but heartbreaking too - that is an extraordinary twist of fate. The church is beautiful.
    Mary

    ReplyDelete
  45. Mary it is a heart breaking story, but as the French say often c'est la vie! The church was stunning. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  46. Diane thanks for this interesting but sad series about the two Oradours's.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Linda I love looking up the history of the French towns but this really is one of the saddest ones. Hope all well in Italy. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  48. Dear Diane, thank you for your kind words on my blog. Your words brightened my day.
    I loved your pictures, the Church is very ornate. The story is very sad. I also enjojed looking at your vegetable garden. Did you make quince compote yet?? My mom used to make it for us it is delicious. Have a great day.

    ReplyDelete
  49. Marco Pasha. I hope the sun is starting to shine for you again and all your troubles are becoming small ones.
    The story of the two Oradours is sad but life goes on..... I have been busy with quince jelly and quince confiture. Sadly I am short of freezer space or life would be much easier!! Diane

    ReplyDelete
  50. Lovely tour, you combined history with geography! Thank you for telling me about my page error. I have fixed it.

    ReplyDelete
  51. It was a joy to be able to travel through these magnificent buildings with you. How many things you can see in France - so many hidden treasures.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Judy thanks for the comment. Good the error is fixed, I am glad I noticed it early on. :-) Diane

    ReplyDelete
  53. Olgo you are so right, there are so many hidden treasures here. I have stopped at so many small villages thinking that there is little of interest, then I come across something very unexpected. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  54. Just looking at your photos, it seems that all the structural buildings there are very beautiful. I love the details and the styles!

    ReplyDelete
  55. chubskulit, Thanks for the comment, the buildings there are quite beautiful and it is good to see they have been restored so well. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  56. It must be wonderful to be surrounded by so much history. I am fascinated by posts such as this and your photos are wonderful. Potato starch is also called potato flour. It is similar in consistency to arrow root or cornstarch. I've never made the cookies with anything other than potato starch. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

    ReplyDelete
  57. Diane, thanks again for sharing another lovely trip. The interior of that church is beautiful. There a little surprise hiding below the table as well. Guess, it's a small village. Not many prople around.
    Kristy

    ReplyDelete
  58. Hi Mary thanks for the potato starch info, so I guess I can try one of the other similar ingredients.
    We are so lucky to be here surrounded by so much history. I say thank you every day :-) Keep well Diane

    ReplyDelete
  59. Kristy yes it is a surprise under the table but it is beautiful. It really is a lovely church. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  60. Beautiful place, and interesting war history too! I just love that church..

    Great moody cloud/storm shots earlier, and I love the tour around your garden and veggie garden. I can almost smell that rose!

    The cosmos on the header photo is my favourite...

    ReplyDelete
  61. I am not a traveller but the more I see France through your eyes, the more itchy feet I get. You know that last time my Quay Lo took me to Europe, I just love all the churches I visited. They are all beautiful beyond words and I feel peace and tranquil when I was in each one of them. The weekend is here again, have a nice one. HUGS.

    ReplyDelete
  62. I am not a fan at all of memorial, but your "reportage" is really lovely!
    Well done again Diane!
    Keep well!

    ReplyDelete
  63. Noushaka I know you are not one for memorials, but these things happen and they are part of history like it or not. Never the less thanks for the comment. Have a great weekend, Diane xx

    ReplyDelete
  64. What a pretty town, and magnificent church. The Hotel de Ville actually looks somewhat like my house, which is funny. Count me as another who loves your tours of small towns! Have a lovely weekend, Diane!

    ReplyDelete
  65. Marjie I will have to come and see your house one day if it looks like this, my interest is aroused LOL. I guess though with 9 children you have to have somewhere huge. I know that you have large grounds as well. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  66. I couldn't help but smile at the picture of the round-about. They are sometimes a little challenging for the foreign driver until you learn the rules of the road. (smile)In some villages we've been in, I'm not sure there are any.

    Lovely village Diane. How fortunate that it was spared. The inside of the church looks so peaceful and serene and the town hall has quite a fancy exerior.
    Sam

    ReplyDelete
  67. God, the French small towns are so charming. Love taking the photo journey.

    Cheers.
    velva

    ReplyDelete
  68. I love looking at all your photos. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  69. This post is a perfect tonic for a dull, grey and wet Irish Sunday morning. I can imagine walking with you through the village, I would spend a lot of time in that church, and my sketchbook would be constantly in use ;)

    I am going to wear my prize of your jewellery (merci again) to college tomorrow, the necklace goes perfectly with a top I have.

    ReplyDelete
  70. Sam generally speaking in France you give way to the left, but there was an old ruling that you gave way to the right with some small roads. This rule does not exist (so far as I understand) any more. The problem is the elderly drive as they always have done, so beware of traffic coming from the right in some places as well!!! Thanks for the comment have a good day. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  71. Thanks Velva, you are so right the small towns really have a charm all of their own. I hope it never changes. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  72. Christine's Pantry so glad you enjoy, have a good day. Diane

    ReplyDelete
  73. Oh Dolly I would love to walk through the village with you, and I would be delighted to be able to watch you at work with your sketch book. Maybe one day.... Enjoy the jewellery tomorrow. Have a lovely day and I hope that college is fun. I wish I could afford to take art lessons, I dabble, but I have no idea what I am doing!! Diane xx

    ReplyDelete
  74. Hi Diane, just wishing you a blessed Sunday. Have a fab week ahead!

    Rose

    ReplyDelete
  75. chubskulit, many thanks for the kind thought, I hope you also have a fabulous week. Take care and keep well Diane

    ReplyDelete
  76. dear friend.....when I view these photos and realize what took place on French soil during the war...I always am amazed at all the beauty that has been rebuilt and survived. We were in Normandy a few years ago and I WILL NEVER FORGET the beautiful spot that is now memorialized where the invasion took place. Took my breath away.

    xo

    Jo

    ReplyDelete
  77. Hi Jo, France really is beautiful and it is amazing when you look back through history what they have survived. We have seen quite a lot of Normandy and the battle fields etc and yes it is still a stunning area. Where we live is right in the centre of where the resistance was and there are many stories to be told here. Thanks for the comment Diane xx

    ReplyDelete
  78. Beautiful place and great shots, Diane!

    ReplyDelete
  79. JM it is a lovely little place and so much history...... Diane

    ReplyDelete

Thanks for taking the time to visit and pass a comment. Every comment is appreciated and I try to reply to each and every one. All comments are verification free but will come to me for approval first :-)) No Anonymous Users!