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The rampant ambition of Blanchard the balloonist, from Petit Andelys


Jean Pierre François Blanchard was born in Petit Andelys, the second son of an odd-job man, on July 4, 1753.  Perhaps the vast remains of Chateau Gaillard that tower above the town inspired him to the possibilities of human endeavour.  Whatever the cause, Jean Pierre was destined to go down,

The life of a small harbour; Le port du cap Lévi, in Cotentin

The top left of Normandy is the Cotentin Peninsula and within that, the Val de Saire.  A region with timeless pockets of wildness and a shoreline that has been battling the sea since time began. All around its maritime boundaries are ports; from stately Cherbourg to little stone pockets by small

Watering places of Normandy – more from Cook’s invaluable 1883 handbook

At this time of year many Normandy fans, or soon to be fans, are planning a seaside holiday in this remarkable region. To help choose a fine beach at a sensible price, we have dipped back in to ‘Cook’s Handbook for Normandy’ published in 1883, and are sharing with you reviews

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