Suvarna Garge (Editor)

Rochefort, Charente Maritime

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Country  France
Department  Charente-Maritime
Intercommunality  Pays Rochefortais
Area  21.95 km²
Number of airports  1
Region  Nouvelle-Aquitaine
Arrondissement  Rochefort
Population (2008)  25,676
Local time  Monday 10:32 PM
Rochefort, Charente-Maritime httpsuploadwikimediaorgwikipediacommonsthu
Weather  11°C, Wind SW at 14 km/h, 91% Humidity
Points of interest  Musée National de la Marine, Corderie Royale, Musée des Commerces d'Autrefois, Musée Hèbre de Saint‑Clément, Musée national de l'Ancienn

Rochefort ([ʁɔʃ.fɔʁ]) is a commune in southwestern France, a port on the Charente estuary. It is a sub-prefecture of the Charente-Maritime department.


Map of 17300 Rochefort, France


In December 1665, Rochefort was chosen by Jean-Baptiste Colbert as a place of "refuge, defense and supply" for the French Navy. The Arsenal de Rochefort served as a naval base and dockyard until it closed in 1926.

In September 1757, Rochefort was the target of an ambitious British raid during the Seven Years' War.

Another infrastructure of early Rochefort from 1766 was its bagne, a high-security penal colony involving hard labor. Bagnes were then common fixtures in military harbors and naval bases, such as Toulon or Brest, because they provided free labor. During the Jacobin period of the French Revolution (1790–95), over 800 Roman Catholic priests and other clergy who refused to take the anti-Papal oath of the "Civil Constitution of the Clergy" were put aboard a fleet of prison ships in Rochefort harbor, where most died due to inhumane conditions.

Off Rochefort, from the island of Île-d'Aix where he had spent several days hoping to flee to America, Napoleon Bonaparte surrendered to Captain F. L. Maitland aboard HMS Bellerophon, on 17 July 1815, ending the "Hundred Days".

Rochefort is a notable example of 17th-century "ville nouvelle" or new town, which means its design and building resulted from a political decree. The reason for building Rochefort was to a large extent that royal power could hardly depend on rebellious Protestant La Rochelle, which Cardinal Richelieu had to besiege a few decades earlier. Well into the 20th century, Rochefort remained primarily a garrison town. The tourist industry, which had long existed due to the town's spa, gained emphasis in the 1990s.


The town is home to a unique style of bridge (built in 1900), named Pont transbordeur de Rochefort

Other sights include:

  • Musée National de la Marine
  • Conservatoire du Bégonia, the world's largest begonia collection
  • L'Hermione, a replica of a 1779 frigate being built in the town
  • Personalities

    Rochefort was the birthplace of:

  • Louis-René Levassor de Latouche Tréville (1745–1804), French admiral.
  • Charles Rigault de Genouilly (1807–1873), French admiral, conqueror of Vietnam.
  • Pierre Loti (1850–1923), author. His house has been turned into a museum
  • Jean-Joseph Sanfourche was a French artist and sculptor.
  • Amédée William Merlaud-Ponty (1866-1915), Governor General of French West Africa.
  • Pauline Réage, pseudonym of Anne Desclos (1907–1998), author
  • Maurice Merleau-Ponty (1908–1961), philosopher
  • Pierre Salviac, (1946-), is a French journalist, former commentator of rugby-match and since then polemicist.
  • Loïc Le Marrec French volleyball coach (1977-) He has a total of 140 teams in France.
  • International relations

    Rochefort is twinned with:

  • Burton upon Trent, United Kingdom
  • Torrelavega, Spain
  • Papenburg, Germany
  • References

    Rochefort, Charente-Maritime Wikipedia

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