Photographer's Note

I dedicate this photo to Gilles, "vbbreizh" who left us exactly one year ago, and who spent his last years making an inventory of all the churches or the bell towers of Brittany, either on his personal site "VB' Breizh, clochers de Bretagne", or on his TE gallery.
If you look at his TE gallery, you'll see mainly old typical Breton chapels, but his personal site is a very comprehensive inventory of ALL religious buildings of Brittany, in which he includes the department of Loire-Atlantique. This department was stolen off Brittany with one stroke of Petain's pen during the 2nd WW.

St-Lyphard is the main village of the "Grande Brière" (490km2) this marshland which hosts a lot of biodiversity!
The steeple of its church is used as a belvedere, and when on top, on a clear day, one can see all around the "Grande Brière", up to La Roche-Bernard in the north, to St Nazaire in the south, and to Guérande and its salt marshes in the south-west.
The church was built at the end of the 19th century, beginning of the 20th century, at a time when the Catholic religion wanted to compensate for the advance of laicisisation with Jules Ferry creating free, compulsory state education!
Unfortunately, these edifices were built badly and too quickly, and have needed or need drastic repairs, to keep them standing.

St Lyphard's church was one of those, not only for religious reasons, but also for the sake of tourism, the tower being used as a belvedere.

As I was passing by, one October day in 2007, I was surprised to see a bright red steeple; so I made a detour, to see the work better, and I asked a resident about it: He was furious: "One would think we are in Disneyland, eh?"
However by the church, there were large pannels, in order to explain this polychrome restoration to the residents and sight-seers. In the previous centuries, polychrome buildings were usual.
I personally was a bit shocked at first, as we are not used to polychrome ancient buildings in France. But I quite like it now!

Gilles was very happy , when I sent him these photos of "The Grande Brière", because his maternal family originated from here, although he himself spent most of his life in Morlaix, Finistère.
He was a good, worthy friend, and I wanted to mark the anniversary of his death!


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Additional Photos by MarieLouise Davies (maloutim) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 2267 W: 353 N: 4068] (13617)
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