In La Rochelle, the Saint-Sauveur church begins the manufacture of two new bells

In La Rochelle, the Saint-Sauveur church begins the manufacture of two new bells

The Salvare Campani association has just received 30,000 euros in state aid to support the manufacture of two new bells for the Saint-Sauveur church in La Rochelle (Charente-Maritime). A boost for the Old Port.

Matins will perhaps ring again in the old port of La Rochelle. The bells of the Saint-Sauveur church in Charente-Maritime received 30,000 euros in state subsidies at the beginning of April, via the Ministry of Tourism and the Heritage Foundation. A sum from the new Artistic Crafts Support Fund supported by these two entities which work hand in hand for the sustainability of artistic professions and crafts and the transmission of know-how.

Art and craftsmanship at the heart of an ambition

The subsidies will be donated to the Salvare Campani association, which is a friend of La Rochelle heritage and wants to restore it. This sum will allow it to add two additional bells to the first two, currently being restored by the municipality, and therefore ring the emblematic belfry of the historic center again.

In this monument built in 1152 by the monks of Île-d'Aix will do, the bells have not chimed since 1993. Which “is not logical”, comments Gérard de Monteil, the president of the association, quoted by France 3 Nouvelle Aquitaine. For the project, receiving this money is an accomplishment of the work started last December with the town hall and the Heritage Foundation, which had already called for donations and which is continuing the work initiated in September 2022. “It’s a real boost , which gives credibility to our project and proves its interest”, boasts Gérard de Monteil, still at France 3 Nouvelle Aquitaine. Nearly 110,000 euros of the 165,000 budget still need to be raised…

An enthusiasm that is out of the ordinary

The Salvare Campani association is showing determination and stepping up its initiatives to energize and publicize the work. Starting with the last one, during the Easter festivities, by offering chocolate bells for Saint-Sauveur. At the end of Easter masses, volunteers wandered around the surrounding churches and markets to sell these treats made by the Cistercians of Notre-Dame du Val d'Igny abbey. She also scours the local media, always looking for generosity. A generosity that did not fail to come, and even from very far away. After months of canvassing, Salvare Campani purchased, in 2022, in Quebec (Canada), two one-ton bronze bells for a symbolic dollar. Arriving in France, they will now be melted in the English Channel by Cornille-Havard, one of the last foundries in the country. Bells which will harmoniously ring the A#, at the beginning of 2025, with the two other bells, Gabrielle-Paule (18th century) and Victoire-Louise cast in 1852. An ambition which denotes and elevates in an urban landscape accustomed to the noise of cars.

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