Le Genest-Saint-Isle 53940

Another church destined to be demolished…….

Built in 1886, no religious services have been held at the church for decades. On 16th January, the prefecture issued a decree of disaffection: The church, disused for Catholic worship is confirmed for total demolition, subject to the establishment of a memorial.

The bell is of particular historical interest and will be removed and transferred to another location

EuroMayenne Association

EuroMayenne was founded in 1991 by a small group of Mayennais who saw the need to help those moving into the department to integrate with the locals.

The association has presently nearly 200 members. About two thirds are Brisith / Anglophone with a mix of those still working and those who have retired; and the other third are French who enjoy being able to socialise internationally whilst on home territory.

The EuroMayenne Association provides a network of help, guidance, activities and friendship. Its members extend a warm welcome to all who come to live in the Mayenne Department.

Here are some of the activities planned for this year:

February 18th Lunch and Ten-Pin Bowling (Laval)

March 18th Guided Visit to Evron Basilica

April 15th Guided Environmental Visit (Fontaine-Daniel)

May 14th Plant Swap & BBQ (Mayenne)

June 10th Lunch & Boat Trip (Laval)

To find out more or to join the association, click HERE


Le Décibel bar and music venue to close….

It is an institution of music in Mayenne which must lower the curtain this Friday. The bar-concert Le Décibel in Montenay, formerly “Chez Philippe” is forced to close because its boss can no longer make ends meet. Inflation and rising energy prices have got the better of this very popular musical venue since its creation in 1987 .

Gorron 53120

Unfortunately for many British residents in France giving blood is not an option. People who have stayed in England are excluded from the list of people allowed to donate blood. This restriction concerns anyone who travelled to England, Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland between 1980 and 1996. Travellers who have only spent a few weeks are not excluded, only those who have stayed at least six months, not necessarily consecutive, are. The reason for this is Creutzfeld-Jakob disease. This pathology, better known as mad cow disease, wreaked havoc in the United Kingdom. Thousands of cattle had to be slaughtered and people died.

Why, after so many years, does France still prevent potentially infected people from donating blood? For other infectious diseases, such as influenza or malaria, an individual is eligible to donate blood after only a few months. Even though the mad cow epidemic dates back at least 20 years, the risk of infection still exists, as Bernhard Wegmüller, director of the blood transfusion service of the Swiss Red Cross, attests. . Researchers from the University of Zurich estimate that the incubation period could be up to 40 years.

For everyone else, there is a blood donor session in Gorron on Monday 30th January 4pm-7pm at the Espace Colmont.

La Baconnière 53240

Following the response to the news about the proposed demolition of the church at La Baconnière 53240, a petition has been set up, all you need to do is click on this link and enter your name and email address.

Recipe of the week
Tarte Tatin:
Story https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tarte_Tatin
Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i3a6c_mMe1w

Museums in the Mayenne

After their traditional annual closure, the museum of the castle of Mayenne, the archaeological museum of Jublains and the Memorial of the deportees of Mayenne reopen their doors to the public on February 1st.

Note: the museums will be free on Sunday February 5, like every first Sunday of the month.

Laval Hospital closures…

The management of the Laval hospital has announced eight nights of scheduled closures for the Accident & Emergency room. Since November 2021, it’s the same problem: the lack of emergency doctors. The next closure is Monday, February 6. More closures are planned:

Friday February 10, Tuesday February 14, Wednesday February 15, Friday February 17, Sunday February 19, Tuesday February 21, Wednesday February 22.

On these dates only obstetrical, psychological and pediatric emergencies can be treated.

International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust

The 28th January is International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust. This week we are highlighting the lives of 3 local men as featured in the Memorial des Deportés de la Mayenne, 23 rue Ambroise de Loré. 53100 MAYENNE

The Memorial of the Deportees pays homage to all deported persons from the department of Mayenne, sent to concentration or extermination camps during the Second World War.

You can visit the Memorial by yourself. Leaflets for visit/ in English/ in German/ are available at the office.; you, also, can follow a guided visit at 2 pm and 4 pm. To have a guided visit in English or in German, thanks to contact us beforehand ( by email « memorial.deportes53@gmail.com »).

A video projection of the testimonies of Deportees is available by request ( duration 30 minutes)


From Tuesday to Saturday and on the first Sunday of each month from 2 pm to 6 pm.

Closed on bank holidays (jan 1, may 1, may 8, jul 14, aug 15, nov 1, nov 11, dec 25) and during christmas holidays and in january.

Entry fee: 5€ adult. 3€ for job seekers and students. Free for under 12 years old.

Guided visit 6 euros. 4 euros for students and jobseekers.

Throughout the week, we will be sharing the stories of just some of the local French citizens who were deported to concentration camps during the Second World War.

Marcel Le Roy

Marcel Le Roy, born on October 26, 1919 in Niort-la-Fontaine was a French Resistance member.

At the beginning of the Second World War, he joined the Air Force where he became a senior radio technician. Following the French defeat, he tried and failed in December 1940 to reach England. He then went to Marseille, where he failed to join the Free French. He was then contacted by Jean Le Roux, the first and main transmitter of the Johnny Network. (The Johnny Network, recognized as a “Free French” network, was created at the end of 1940 by some Bretons: Jean Le Roux, Jean Milon, Robert Alaterre and Daniel Lomenech. They landed on March 18, 1941 in Lampaul-Ploudalmézeau with two transmitters to create the Johnny network, which was mainly responsible for monitoring the movements of the Kriegsmarine around the port of Brest.)

Marcel joined the network in 1941 with the mission of addressing the public on the Occupation. He was taken prisoner on 16 February 1942 in Quimper. He escaped, but was again captured three days later.

He was imprisoned in Angers, Fresnes, and Fort de Romainville and then deported to Natzweiler-Struthof in July 1943, from there he was transferred to Kommando d’Erringen, and lastly to Dachau. He was freed on 30 April 1945 from Allach.

He was elected mayor of Niort-la-Fontaine, and was general councillor of the Mayenne for the Canton of Lassay-les-Châteaux from 1962 to 1994

You can find out more about these and other brave men and women from the Mayenne at The Mayenne Deportees Memorial, 23 rue Ambroise de Loré 53100 MAYENNE.

Jean Surin

Jean Surin , was a French resistance fighter, born on February 20, 1912 in Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue ,

He moved to Mayenne in 1931, where his father Félix-Henri was a soldier stationed in the 130th infantry regiment at the Mayenne barracks. He studied there before joining the police. Becoming Inspector of security at the police station in Laval. He worked with the Interior Resistance from 1943 in liaison with Joseph Brochard of the Franco-English group and Suzanne Martinière.

He was stopped for the first time in August 1943, and released. On January 20th 1944 he was accused of acts of resistance with two other colleagues. He was arrested for having issued identity cards to resistance fighters and members of the STO (The Compulsory Labour Service was responsible for the requisition and transfer to Germany of hundreds of thousands of French workers against their will, in order to participate in the German war effort: working in factories, agriculture, railroads, etc.
Surin and his 2 colleagues were imprisoned in February 1944. Surin was detained in the prison of Le Mans, then sent to Compiègne. In april 1944, he was deported to the Mauthausen camp in Austria (Of a total of around 190,000 people imprisoned in the Mauthausen concentration camp and its subcamps over seven years, at least 90,000 died.)
Surin survived for a year, before dying aged 33 in April 1945, officially of typhoid. His two other colleagues were liberated by the American Army and returned to Laval in May 1945. His name is on a plaque at the Laval police station.

Arsène DOUMEAU & The Soulabail Network

The Soulabail Network was created at the end of 1942 by François Soulabail, Arsène Doumeau and Georges Guilloux. Georges Guilloux sabotaged parcels bound for Germany. Doumeau and Soulabail found and destroyed letters of denunciation at the Post Office. The members of the network were denounced in 1943 by Albert de Mersseman and by a member of the LVF for anti-German remarks made in a restaurant in Mayenne.

They were arrested in February 1943, and taken to Laval, then to Le Mans. Imprisoned in the Prison of Vert-Galant, they were then transferred to the Auvours camp in Champagné. Sent to Compiègne, they were deported to Mauthausen in March 1943. François Soulabail, suffering from tuberculosis, was gassed at the Hartheim euthanasia center on August 10, 1944. Arsène Doumeau was deported for seven months to Austria, to Mauthausen and then interned in the Dora-Mittelbau camp ,. .

The inmates at Dora-Mittelbau were treated in a brutal and inhumane manner, working 14-hour days and being denied access to basic hygiene, beds, and adequate rations. Around one in three of the roughly 60,000 prisoners who were sent to Dora-Mittelbau died. The camp inmates helped manufacture the V2 missiles. Arsène first participated in the construction of underground galleries, then later he was also assigned to the transport of excrement, as well as to the assembly line in the factory. In the camp, the working and hygienic conditions were terrible. His lungs were damaged by the dust and fumes, he had gangrenous ulcers on his legs. He had even lost his glasses.

His life was saved by a Czech surgeon who, without medical equipment, operated on his legs to remove the gangrene. Arsène was then allowed to work in the camp administration building which was much less exhausting than other camp work. The camp was evacuated on 5 april 1945 and he was transferred to Bergen-Belsen which was liberated by the English. He returned to France on 29 april 1945. On his return home he wrote his memoir in old school notebooks. He also wrote articles for a local newspaper, recounting the adventures of his regiment during the war.

Georges Guilloux was interned in the Mauthausen camp. He was liberated on May 6, 1945.

TRAVEL WARNING! 31st January 2023

From the UK government website:

Several unions have called for cross-sector strike action and demonstrations on Tuesday 31 January. This may lead to disruption to services. Please check the latest advice with operators before travelling, avoid demonstrations and follow the advice of local authorities.

Scaffolding is being erected around the 5th tower at Lassay les Châteaux ready for remedial works….

Gorron 53120

Les Gorronnaises family business (based in Gorron) which produces 1,300 tonnes of sausages and charcuterie per year is investing 1.7 million euros to acquire new machines and additional preparation/cooking units, which will enable them to expand the product range.

With an extension of 500 m² and new products, the Gorronnaises will try to conquer additional markets. “We are very rooted in Mayenne but we also have to go see our colleagues, so to go a little bit to Sarthe, Orne, Ille-et-Vilaine and Manche in particular”, explains Henry Cousin, the general manager of the company which employs 40 employees to produce 800 tonnes of sausages and 500 tonnes of rillettes, pâtés and other charcuterie per year.

He hopes that the work will be completed for the launch of the sausage season in May. The company will also be recruiting more staff this year, in particular two sales representatives.

Properties of the week!
Law & Order: News
Following the announcement made by Macron when he visited the Mayenne last year, out of the two new gendarmerie brigades that will be created in Mayenne, one will be a mobile brigade, according to Joël Balandraud, the president of the association of mayors of Mayenne. The other brigade must be built in a Mayenne commune, but no choice has been made for the moment.
The consultation continues in Mayenne, in order to decide which mtown/village will be awarded the new gendarmerie brigades. According to Mr Balandraud, the mobile brigade with a reinforcement of ten gendarmes will probably be based in Laval.
Regarding the other brigade, nothing has been decided yet: several places have been proposed. The cost is important for the town halls because they have to finance the construction of this new brigade , which can put them off volunteering.
Place du 11 novembre, 53000 Laval

English translation of the official brochure explaining the aims of the archeological dig taking place in Laval over th next 6 months.

Local Artist: Vincent Landais

You might recognise his style from the recent brochure of the archaeological work in Place du 11 novembre in Laval.

This former civil engineer, who studied at Rennes and the Basque Country, left his plans and sketches to devote himself to his passion: drawing. “I thought that the engineering profession was more creative, but in the end I was constrained by standards and calculations,” explains Vincent Landais.

He decided to change jobs in 2021: “After five years, I felt worn out. Now, as an illustrator, I can see the results of my work and I’m satisfied with what I’ve been able to achieve,” says the artist.

To buy prints of his amazing illustrations, visit his website:


Laval 53000

Monday January 23, 2023 , around 9 a.m., the lifeless body of a young man was found on a terrace of a building under construction, at 93, rue Magenta in Laval (Mayenne) , just next to the station.

The circumstances of the death remain unclear. The scenario of a fall from the crane, located above the site, was ruled out , the anti-burglary grids installed on the machine not having been damaged. Investigators are studying the hypothesis of an accident: the victim may have fallen because of a frozen area. The investigation, which will also have to determine how the victim was able to access the place (no break-in was noted), was entrusted to the Judicial Police of Angers by the public prosecutor of Laval.

According to the Courrier de la Mayenne, the death probably occurred on Saturday morning, between 8:30 a.m. and 11 a.m. When the workers arrived on Monday morning, the body was lying on its back, the face camouflaged by a neck warmer. The 24-year-old man was not from Mayenne and worked in Rennes (Ille-et-Vilaine) . There is no connection to the construction site.

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