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Report 1982: Megaliths, Parish Closes and Cider - Part 3 Northern Finistère

By Eleanor from UK, Fall 2011

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Page 16 of 32: Some of the Other Hidden Gems in the St-Thégonnec Area

photo by MAW

Chapelle Notre-Dame-de-Bon-Secours

As well as the large Parish Closes there are other smaller places around the area which are worth seeking out.

Loc-Eguiner-St-Thégonnec is a nice little village about three miles south of St-Thégonnec. It has a splendid Marie dated 1825 and small 16thC church with a small calvary in the churchyard. Below are two fountains, one dedicated to St Eguiner and the other dated 1566 to St John the Baptist.

Plounéour-Ménez is six miles south east of Loc-Eguiner and is another pleasant small town with old granite houses round the square. According to the guide books, the church has the tallest spire in Brittany. It has a large triumphal arch, small calvary and a sundial with angels.

St-Servais is a small village just off N12 to the west of St-Thégonnec with a large parking area surrounded by a wild flower garden. The church has a very ornate slender spire with pinnacles and two balconies. There is a fairly simple calvary with figures carved round the square base and a splendid ossuary with a highly carved door. Inside is a small white altar with gilt decoration and a carving of the annunciation. There are empty wooden niches and small statues on the window ledges.

Yan D’Argent, a well known painter in Paris, lived here for a while. He was responsible for the paintings and decorations in the church and ossuary. There is a museum about his work and the church is open similar hours to the museum. Both were shut when we visited but the ossuary was open. On the west wall are paintings of angels. At the back is a large circular painting of Mary and Jesus with possibly St Anne and St Joachim. The east wall is painted pink with a pattern of diamonds and circles.

On the River Elorn between St Servais and La Roche-Maurice is Pont-Christ with an old bridge across the river. Moulin De Brezel is a large stone building which looks as if it had been a hotel or restaurant but in September 2011 was closed and for sale.

Chapelle Notre-Dame-De-Bon-Secours was built in 1533 but destroyed by fire in the 19thC under mysterious circumstances. The church had been big. In 1790 the village had 206 inhabitants. Now all that is left are a few scattered houses. The church has a small square tower at the west end with an open belfry and small spire. There are the remains of a small ossuary built onto the SW corner of the church. The east wall is still standing with the empty remains of the east end window. There are the remains of an arch on the north side of the church. In the church yard is a small calvary.

This is a delightful spot and well worth finding.

La Roche-Maurice is dominated by the remains of Roc’h Morven Castle on a rocky promontory above the town. Restoration work has been done on this and there are a series of information boards around the site. There is a well made path up to the castle and access is by an outside metal staircase. Parts of the curtain wall can be seen. There are the remains of the kitchens with ice store. The castle keep is roofless and has no internal structures left. The stone keep was built at the end of the 12thC and the castle was extended in the 14thC by the Rohans following a fire. There was further work in the 15thC. The castle was later abandoned and the stone robbed for buildings.

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