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In December 1665 Rochefort was chosen by Jean-Baptiste Colbert as a place of “refuge, defense and supply” for the French navy. Its military harbour was fortified by Louis XIV’s commissary of fortifications Vauban. Between 1666-1669 the king had the “Corderie Royale” (then the longest building in Europe) constructed to make cordage for French ships of war. The making of cordage ceased in 1867, and in 1926 the arsenal of Rochefort was closed. The building was burned by occupation forces in 1944 and left abandoned for twenty years. Today it has been restored for municipal and tourist purposes. Another infrastructure of early Rochefort from 1766 was its bagne, a high-security penal colony involving hard labour. Bagnes were then common fixtures in military harbours and naval bases, such as Toulon or Brest, because they provided free labour.

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 July 17, 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.
Rochefort is a commune in western France, a seaport on the Atlantic Ocean. It is a sub-prefecture of the Charente-Maritime département.

Taken at the old Naval Port Town of Rochfort this is part of the “Le Corderie” and Aresenal. This is also the town that is currently restoring an old Flagship “l’Hermione”

Further information

Featured in French Architecture and also Group Icon 24th February ’09 :D
Featured in Image Writing 25th February ’09

Canon eos 350d

Given the “old” look!


building, history, architecture, river, france, sepia, cafe, bygone, naval, rochfort, boats, port

We live in the West of France in the Poitou Charentes region, I love where we live and take a lot of inspiration for photography from the countryside and wonderful regions around us.

I have not had any formal training and just feel comfortable behind the lens, enjoying the feeling of liberty and fun that is to be had with a camera.

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  • picketty
    pickettyabout 5 years ago

    sad… it looks so very 20th century

  • Thank-you (I think?) !!

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Catherine Hamilton-Veal  ©
    Catherine Hami...about 5 years ago

    great capture Pam and narrative.x

  • Thank you so much Catherine :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Valerie Anne Kelly
    Valerie Anne K...about 5 years ago

    Awws such a great nostalgic shot sweetheART ;} happy hippy hugglez

  • Thank you kindly Val :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Squealia
    Squealiaabout 5 years ago

    Super shot and treatment

  • Thank you kindly :))

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Wendi Donaldson
    Wendi Donaldsonabout 5 years ago

    Beautiful shot ….like the sepia tone here too. Great narrative too.

  • Thank you kindly Wendi – it is another fascinating area :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Barry Norton
    Barry Nortonabout 5 years ago

    Good capture and info

  • Thank you Barry :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • Marilyn Harris
    Marilyn Harrisabout 5 years ago

    Fabulous work Pamela!! Congratulations on your feature!! x :o)

  • Thank you so much Blossom :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

    IRISHPIXabout 5 years ago

    This is absolutely beautiful !

  • Thank you so much for your lovely comment :)

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • sstarlightss
    sstarlightssabout 5 years ago

    Beautiful shot and effect, Pamela! Congrats on your very well deserved feature!

  • Thank you so much for your lovely comment Claudia :))

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

  • reflector
    reflectorabout 5 years ago

    Very well captured and treated !

  • Thank you kindly James :D

    – Pamela Jayne Smith

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