Chécy, Friends of the vine (Translation in progress)

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Church of St Pierre & St Germain Church of Chécy

he Church of St Pierre and St Germain with its bell tower 50 meters high overlooking Chécy, owes its name to the merging of the two Roman Catholic parishes of St Peter and St Germain.
The church of St Germain, built in the 5th century at the top of the hill, where now stands the house of St Germain, not far from the present church, was razed to the ground in 1562 during the Religious Wars…
But history does not like change. The place where Holy Communion Wine was once taken became in the 19th century home of an extremely popular tavern, the rallying point of the barges plying the canal at the time.
The relatively large size of the present church is probably due for Checy to have been given as endowment by King St Louis to his wife Marguerite de Provence. The building itself is not precisely dated, while porch and bell tower could come from the 12th century. As for the most remarkable part, choir and transept, they were built in gothic style towards end of the 13th century. Some later alterations such as openings of arches taking place in the 16th century to link the chapels with the choir.
The stained glass windows and statues recall that St Louis and Joan of Arc are important figures in the history of Chécy. Also worth noticing, the beautiful rose window above the choir, facing east.
But since late 1990s and early 2000s, as a result of terrain subsidence after several years of drought, the bell tower of the church is gradually, slowly sinking into the ground.
In order for Chécy not to be known one day as another Pisa (on Loire?) strengthening works were undertaken (hence the straps seen around the bell tower) with installation of micro-piles and concrete girders under the foundations.
©2020 Alain Gille for CAVE
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