Local Heart, Global Soul

November 23, 2013

Bancigny’s Saint-Nicolas Is A Fraction Decapitated…

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

This fortified church in the Thiérache region of northeastern France is certainly one that has character.

As we drove into the village of Bancigny we only saw the rear of the Church and it didn’t really look fortified at all.

This is mostly because one of the imposing towers has been partially decapitated and it’s amended roofline now slopes downwards at a steep angle to blend in with the rest of the church roof.

Once you reach the front of the church however, the fortifications are immediately evident.

I’ve given this church it’s own post because there are so many quirky features, not just on the church but also in the surrounding buildings and I felt it needed a full set of  photographs to do it justice. I found a small snippet of information in Wikipedia (link below) and as with some of the other fortified churches in the region, there are often a few photos to be found on websites like Flickr but again, no additional information as to their history.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

Bancigny is located some 50 km north-east of Laon and 12 km east by south-east of Vervins. It can be accessed by the D747 road from Plomion in the north-west which then continues east to Jeantes. There is also country road access from west, south, and north. Apart from the village the commune is entirely farmland with no other villages or hamlets.

Church of Saint-Nicolas. The defence towers in front (the upper part of each was leveled in the period 1900-1905 as evidenced by postcards of the period) have been listed as historical monuments since 1932. 

The Church of Saint Nicolas grabs your attention, the variation of building materials is striking and the decapitated tower with it’s sloping roof gets your imagination going…the windows are surprisingly modern in style, and from what I can make out, have brilliant colour too. There’s a little (and fairly modern I think) statue in an interesting and ancient little cubby hole on the outside of one of the towers, another nesting site for birds at the top of the spire.

The amalgamation of colours, styles and materials are quirky but pleasing to the eye. The surrounding buildings continue the quirky theme, notably  a farm gateway  close by that has a dovecote incorporated into this design, similar  in style to the one we saw in Dagmy Lambercy.

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Kiwidutch)

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

(photograph © Velveteen) used with permission

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bancigny

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