Sunday, November 20, 2011

Gerberoy, Ville des roses

The beautiful medieval town of Gerberoy is now known as the "Village of Roses".   Royal permission was granted in 1202 enabling Gerberoy to be called a 'Ville'.  It is located in the present département of Oise in Northern France (Picardy), in the center of a triangle formed by Beauvais, Amiens and Rouen, one of the theatres for the disastrous Hundred Years War. 

Now classified as one of the 'most beautiful villages in France', this formerly neglected farming village was rediscovered in 1901 by various artists, including Auguste Delaherche and Henri le Sidaner.  Sidaner's avid interest in roses led him to plant them everywhere, not just at his home but all around the village, the ancient fort ruins, along paths leading into the village, everywhere.  Before long, citified retirees discovered the charm of the village's old half-timbered structures from the 17th and 18th centuries and its buildings made of brick, as well as the wonderful views the village offered of the surrounding lush farmland.Begun in 1928, Gerberoy's famed Fête des roses now attracts thousands of tourists annually.  If you can visit Gerberoy on the third Sunday of June, you will see the village's flowers at their peak, during this festival.  (These photos were taken in the afternoon of June 14th, 2011, at the end of a very dry spring; rains were just returning.)