The Heritage Mission for the safeguarding of endangered heritage, carried out by Stéphane Bern, deployed by the Heritage Foundation and supported by the Ministry of Culture and FDJ, reveals its selection of iconic sites for the sixth edition of the Heritage Mission games offer. In Hauts-de-France, the Chartreuse Notre-Dame-des-Prés in Neuville-sous-Montreuil will represent the region.

Since 2018, the Heritage Mission has been supporting projects to restore heritage sites. Like the 9-9 bis at Onions (62) mining frames last year, this year is the Chartreuse Notre-Dame-des-Prés located in Neuville-sous-Montreuil, in Pas-de-Calais, which will be helped.

Heritage interest

The Chartreuse Notre-Dame-des-Prés is a chartreux monastery founded in 1324 and rebuilt in 1875 by Clovis Normand, a local architect commissioned by the Chartreux. Between 1880 and 1901, it housed the general printing press of the Order of Chartreux in Europe. After their departure in 1905, it became a sanatorium and a phalanstery of artists, presided over by Anatole France. During the Great War, the Chartreuse, which became temporarily Belgian, was the site hosting the largest number of Belgian civilian refugees. It then houses a psychiatric hospice with atypical and very human functioning. Briefly invested by the Order of Little Sisters of Bethlehem between 1998 and 2003, it is then abandoned. The building is inscribed under the title of historical monuments since 1993.

The year 2008 marks the start of the project of a new vocation that is in keeping with its history: a place of experimentation and societal and artistic innovation, including the most fragile.

It is the only Chartreux monastery without any religious assignment and open to the public, having preserved all its emblematic spaces, including the hermitage arranged with the furniture of a Chartreux Father.  

The development project

Since 2008, the association La Chartreuse de Neuville, a member of the Association des Centres culturels de rencontre – ACCR, has always been open to the public. After several work campaigns, new tranches are needed to ensure the sustainability and development of the project, combining various activities:

  • Cultural Heritage visits, exhibitions, festivals promoting all artistic practices (music, circus, theatre, etc.) or creative or mediation residencies for researchers, authors and artists,
  • Entrepreneurial Seminars or seminars for managers of companies, organisations and public institutions, support and training for the development of hybrid projects (private/public), incubation of innovative projects, etc.
  • Socio-professional integration Training courses in various building trades and the maintenance of green spaces, teaching sites, gardener workshops, etc.

Chartreuse, a site in peril?

La Chartreuse ND des prés (c) Fondation du patrimoine - MyPhotoAgency - X. Nicostrate (36).jpg

The site was in great danger in 2008 when the association bought it, with a risk of collapse in several places. The hospice has been emptied gradually in 15 years and the monastery is no longer maintained since 1985. Its porous chelos let water and merule developed there. It took the association eight years to bring together public partners and sponsors around its innovative business model and finally start work.

Today, 80% of the main body is out of water : it is urgent to finish the enclosure and the cover and to eradicate the note so that it does not reproduce on the restored frames.    

The work to be carried out

The work of the Chartreuse Notre-Dame-des-Prés, including a socio-professional integration clause, consists of two sections:

  1. Restoration of the exterior facades, frames, covers, carpentry and stained glass of the visitors' chapel, the gatehouse and the return of building on the gardens;
  2. Treatment of the missal, structural work, removal, replacement, treatment and/or restructuring of affected floors and joists.

They will start in the first half of 2023 with a end of 2024.

Appointment in September

The sixth edition of the Heritage Mission games will be launched in September 2023. The amount of funding for each site will be announced at the next European Heritage Days.