Grand-Fougeray Castle

Grand-Fougeray Castle, locally known as Château de Grand-Fougeray or Tour Duguesclin, lies east of the town of Grand-Fougeray, in the Ille-et-Vilaine department in France.

An earlier fortification at this site was built in 1189 by Olivier II Tournemire. The present castle was built at the end of the 13th century, probably by Jean de Rieux, Marshal of France. At that time it was a formidable fortress equipped with 9 towers and a keep. The 30-meter high tower we see today served as the keep of that castle. Grand-Fougeray Castle served to protect the seigniory of Fougeray but was also part of a whole chain of castles stretching from the Channel to the Atlantic, of which the castles of Fougères, St. Aubin du Cormier and Vitré were also a part.

During the Breton War of Succession, before 1350, Grand-Fougeray Castle was captured by English forces. In 1354 the castle was taken back by Bertrand du Guesclin, a Breton knight who would later become Constable of France, by a ruse of war. He and some of his men had disguised as lumberjacks who were bringing a supply of fire wood to the castle to persuade the occupants to open the gates.

In 1598, at the end of the French Wars of Religion, Grand-Fougeray Castle was dismantled at the request of the states of Brittany who wanted the demolition of several strongholds in the area in order to promote civil peace.

In 1679 and 1747 the remains of the castle were mentioned in texts, showing that considerable parts of the castle were still standing at those times. In 1750 these remains were razed by the new owners; the Locquet de Granville family, merchants, with exception of the keep. The remains were also used as a quarry for a new Renaissance-style chateau and town houses.

At present the tower is incorporated into a freely accessible town park. I do not know if it is ever possible to visit its interior. A great tower, which makes you wonder how formidable the complete castle must have been in its heyday.


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Grand-Fougeray Castle

Grand-Fougeray Castle, locally known as Château de Grand-Fougeray or Tour Duguesclin, lies east of the town of Grand-Fougeray, in the Ille-et-Vilaine department in France.

An earlier fortification at this site was built in 1189 by Olivier II Tournemire. The present castle was built at the end of the 13th century, probably by Jean de Rieux, Marshal of France. At that time it was a formidable fortress equipped with 9 towers and a keep. The 30-meter high tower we see today served as the keep of that castle. Grand-Fougeray Castle served to protect the seigniory of Fougeray but was also part of a whole chain of castles stretching from the Channel to the Atlantic, of which the castles of Fougères, St. Aubin du Cormier and Vitré were also a part.

During the Breton War of Succession, before 1350, Grand-Fougeray Castle was captured by English forces. In 1354 the castle was taken back by Bertrand du Guesclin, a Breton knight who would later become Constable of France, by a ruse of war. He and some of his men had disguised as lumberjacks who were bringing a supply of fire wood to the castle to persuade the occupants to open the gates.

In 1598, at the end of the French Wars of Religion, Grand-Fougeray Castle was dismantled at the request of the states of Brittany who wanted the demolition of several strongholds in the area in order to promote civil peace.

In 1679 and 1747 the remains of the castle were mentioned in texts, showing that considerable parts of the castle were still standing at those times. In 1750 these remains were razed by the new owners; the Locquet de Granville family, merchants, with exception of the keep. The remains were also used as a quarry for a new Renaissance-style chateau and town houses.

At present the tower is incorporated into a freely accessible town park. I do not know if it is ever possible to visit its interior. A great tower, which makes you wonder how formidable the complete castle must have been in its heyday.


Gallery

View the embedded image gallery online at:
http://castles.nl/grand-fougeray-castle#sigFreeId52eb2c6ebb