Saint-Amand-Montrond

Arts trade biennial fair

Every two years in April, some 60 exhibitors, craftsmen, member cities of the Ville et Metiers d'art network and professional schools attract more than 7,000 visitors and the Arts Trade Biennial Fair in St Amand Montrond. The prestigious event, conceived in 1998 by Serge Voncon, the president of the Ville et Metiers d'Art network between 2001 and 2007, is more and ore successful with each edition. Some 32 different crafts and professions were presented in 2012 and the visitors were kindly invited to buy the works on display. The Fridays are reserved to students and pupils, allowing them to discover new trades and possible vocations. Every year a gold bar is melted on the spot. The next edition will be held in 2014.

Sitios web

Arts trade biennal fair - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondArts trade biennal fair - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondArts trade biennal fair - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-Montrond
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Population: 11,400
Sub-prefecture of Cher (18)
Signature: a town in action
Specialities: sucrine du Berry, pâté berrichon (pie), poirat (pastry), truffiat ou tourte berrichonne.
Economy: goldsmithery, printing, aeronautics.  
Sport: AS Saint-Amand (football), Etoile Saint-Amand (gymnastics), Cycling under-23 training centre. Trophee d'or (women's cycling)
Celebrities: Sully, le Grand Condé, Louis Lecoin (pacifist), Alain Mimoun (athlete), Herve Vilard (singer).
Festivals: Journées du livre (book fair, May), « les Affouages » (folk dancing, August), les Voix d'Or (sacred singing, September), Magic Festival (October)
Labels: ville fleurie (4), ville des metiers d'art.

Timeline

  • 7th century

    A hermit, St Theodulph, creates a convent on the site. A chrich is dedicated to St Amand.
  • 11th century

    Construction of a motte-and-bailey castle. Mention of a first lord, Guillaume of St Amand, in 1096.
  • 1208

    Installation of a fortress on the Montrond hill.
  • 1266

    A charter is granted to the St Amand people and helps the twon develop.
  • 1412

    The English burn down the nearby city of Orval and its inhabitants come to live in St Amand. The town grows and St Amand Montrond gradually repaces St Amand le Chastel, the village inside the castle.
  • 1606

    The Montrond fortress is conquered by Sully, who enlarges it and lives in it for a few months in 1610.
  • 1650-1653

    Siege of Montrond, property of the Grand Condé, by the troops of King Louis XIV.
  • 1753

    Mademoiselle de Charollais definitely merges the two towns.
  • 1832

    Installation of the first printing works.
  • 1840

    Opening of the Canal de Berry.
  • 1888

    Installation of the first goldsmith factory in St Amand, the Moricault company.
  • 1944

    Saint-Amand is liberated on June 6 but is taken back the Germans who slay 13 hostages and all the Jewish population left in town.
  • 2000

    Inauguration of the City of Gold.
air view of 13th and 15th century parts of the fortress. - - ©Cercle d’Histoire et d’Archéologie du Saint-AmandoisLouise Bénédicte, lady of Enghien, and Madam of Charolais of Bourbon, paintred by GobertCanal de Berry in Saint-Amand-Montrond ©ClemRutter
2 previous stages
Population: 11,400
Sub-prefecture of Cher (18)
Signature: a town in action
Specialities: sucrine du Berry, pâté berrichon (pie), poirat (pastry), truffiat ou tourte berrichonne.
Economy: goldsmithery, printing, aeronautics.  
Sport: AS Saint-Amand (football), Etoile Saint-Amand (gymnastics), Cycling under-23 training centre. Trophee d'or (women's cycling)
Celebrities: Sully, le Grand Condé, Louis Lecoin (pacifist), Alain Mimoun (athlete), Herve Vilard (singer).
Festivals: Journées du livre (book fair, May), « les Affouages » (folk dancing, August), les Voix d'Or (sacred singing, September), Magic Festival (October)
Labels: ville fleurie (4), ville des metiers d'art.

Sitios web

Saint-Amand-Montrond and cycling

For Carlos Sastre, St Amand Montrond really was the city of gold as the Spaniard resisted a Cadel Evans charge in the last time trial of the 2008 Tour de France to retain his golden jersey and take it all the way to Paris. The Australian had to wait for three more years to be crowned at long last. Yet the day's stage could once again be decided on a bunch sprint. It was the case in the Paris-Nice stages held in town and won by Frederic Moncassin in 1996, Alessandro Petacchi in 2002 or Tom Boonen in 2006.

Sastre Carlos in time trial Cerilly/Saint-Amand-Montrond in Tour de France 2008 - ©Presse Sports
2 previous stages
Population: 11,400
Sub-prefecture of Cher (18)
Signature: a town in action
Specialities: sucrine du Berry, pâté berrichon (pie), poirat (pastry), truffiat ou tourte berrichonne.
Economy: goldsmithery, printing, aeronautics.  
Sport: AS Saint-Amand (football), Etoile Saint-Amand (gymnastics), Cycling under-23 training centre. Trophee d'or (women's cycling)
Celebrities: Sully, le Grand Condé, Louis Lecoin (pacifist), Alain Mimoun (athlete), Herve Vilard (singer).
Festivals: Journées du livre (book fair, May), « les Affouages » (folk dancing, August), les Voix d'Or (sacred singing, September), Magic Festival (October)
Labels: ville fleurie (4), ville des metiers d'art.

Sitios web

Places to see

Fortress of Montrond:

Listed as Historic Monument since 1988, the fortress is the only fortress with bastions built in the centre of France. It spreads over the whole of a hill overlooking town and gave St Amand the other half of its name. The site was a strategic at the confluence of two rivers, Cher and Marmande. Until the 15th century, Montrond on the right bank and the Orval Castel on the left bank formed a bolt closing the Cher Valley. In 1601, the fortress  became the property of Sully. In 1651, during the Fronde civil war, the fortress held by Grand Condé, who grew there, was besieged for 11 months by the troops of Louis XIV before surrendering.

Saint-Vic Museum:

Successively the town residence of the Noirlac abbots, a women's convent and a prison, the building, flanked by a gorgeous garden, has been the home of St Amand's museum since 1938. The town's history is told from the Paleolithic to WWII.

Canal of Berry:

The Canal of Berry (first known as Canal of Cher and Canal of the Duke of Berry) was 320-km long. Built between 1808 and 1840, it was used until 1945 and definitely disused in 1955.

the Great Knight bastion built in the 17th century for the artillery of the time was the work of Jean Sarrazin, architect for Grand Condé.- ©Cercle d’Histoire et d’Archéologie du Saint-AmandoisClock Tower, (circa 1430 ), vestige of the meidieval castle- ©Cercle d’Histoire et d’Archéologie du Saint-AmandoisCanal de Berry - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondGold City - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondCanal de Berry - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-Montrond
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Population: 11,400
Sub-prefecture of Cher (18)
Signature: a town in action
Specialities: sucrine du Berry, pâté berrichon (pie), poirat (pastry), truffiat ou tourte berrichonne.
Economy: goldsmithery, printing, aeronautics.  
Sport: AS Saint-Amand (football), Etoile Saint-Amand (gymnastics), Cycling under-23 training centre. Trophee d'or (women's cycling)
Celebrities: Sully, le Grand Condé, Louis Lecoin (pacifist), Alain Mimoun (athlete), Herve Vilard (singer).
Festivals: Journées du livre (book fair, May), « les Affouages » (folk dancing, August), les Voix d'Or (sacred singing, September), Magic Festival (October)
Labels: ville fleurie (4), ville des metiers d'art.

Sitios web

City of gold

Saint-Amand-Montrond owes its vocation for goldsmithing to a Parisian jeweller, Mr Moricault, who chose to open shop in town in 1888. Tired of the Paris hustle and bustle, Moricault was looking for a peaceful place in the province and one of his employees, originating from the region, advised him to opt for St Amand.

Since then, the goldsmithing industry developed in St Amand in all its aspects, manufacturing and assembling gold jewels and chains. Its know-how and the quality of its goldsmiths were rewarded by the Ville et Metiers darts label while St Amand was becoming the third largest goldsmithery centre in France. A dozen companies produce four tons of jewellery in the precious metal yearly and the Jean Guehenno Polytechnic is specialised in jewellery.
Aware of its assets, St Amand-Montrond launched a Cité de l'Or (Gold City) in a 17 ha park in 2000. The site is as much a tourist attraction as a professional site, housing a Museum of gold, a concert hall, meeting halls and several services for businesses.
The Gold City is a 34-meters-high glass and steel pyramid spreading over 4,600 m2. At the top of the building stands a diamond symbolising the art of jewellery.

Inside, the 834 m2 House of Gold is a pedagogical museum telling the whole story of the metal and displaying a fabulous collection of jewels.

Gold City - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondGold City - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-MontrondGold City - ©Ville de Saint-Amand-Montrond
2 previous stages
Population: 11,400
Sub-prefecture of Cher (18)
Signature: a town in action
Specialities: sucrine du Berry, pâté berrichon (pie), poirat (pastry), truffiat ou tourte berrichonne.
Economy: goldsmithery, printing, aeronautics.  
Sport: AS Saint-Amand (football), Etoile Saint-Amand (gymnastics), Cycling under-23 training centre. Trophee d'or (women's cycling)
Celebrities: Sully, le Grand Condé, Louis Lecoin (pacifist), Alain Mimoun (athlete), Herve Vilard (singer).
Festivals: Journées du livre (book fair, May), « les Affouages » (folk dancing, August), les Voix d'Or (sacred singing, September), Magic Festival (October)
Labels: ville fleurie (4), ville des metiers d'art.

Sitios web

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