Aunay-sur-Odon

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Aunay-sur-Odon
FranceNormandieAunaySurOdonVueGenerale.jpg
Coat of arms of Aunay-sur-Odon
Coat of arms
Aunay-sur-Odon is located in France
Aunay-sur-Odon
Aunay-sur-Odon
Coordinates: 49°01′16″N 0°37′51″W / 49.0211°N 0.6308°W / 49.0211; -0.6308Coordinates: 49°01′16″N 0°37′51″W / 49.0211°N 0.6308°W / 49.0211; -0.6308
Country France
Region Lower Normandy
Department Calvados
Arrondissement Vire
Canton Aunay-sur-Odon
Intercommunality Aunay-Caumont-Intercom
Government
 • Mayor (2013–2020) Pierre Lefèvre
Area1 12.74 km2 (4.92 sq mi)
Population (2010)2 3,099
 • Density 240/km2 (630/sq mi)
INSEE/Postal code 14027 / 14260
Elevation 98–307 m (322–1,007 ft)
(avg. 123 m or 404 ft)

1 French Land Register data, which excludes lakes, ponds, glaciers > 1 km² (0.386 sq mi or 247 acres) and river estuaries.

2 Population without double counting: residents of multiple communes (e.g., students and military personnel) only counted once.

Aunay-sur-Odon is a French commune in the Calvados department in the Basse-Normandie region of north-western France.

The inhabitants of the commune are known as Aunais or Aunaises.[1]

The commune has been awarded two flowers by the National Council of Towns and Villages in Bloom in the Competition of cities and villages in Bloom.[2]

Geography[edit]

The commune is located at the foot of the foothills of the Armorican Massif on the Odon river a few kilometres east from its source. It is at the heart of the Pre-Bocage country of transition between the Caen plain, the Bessin, and the Bocage virois with which it is also connected.

Located at the intersection of several county roads, the agglomeration is 8 kilometres (5.0 mi) south of Villers-Bocage, 30 kilometres (19 mi) south-west of Caen, and 31 kilometres (19 mi) north-east of Vire. The D8 goes north-east to Bauquay and Caen. The D6 connects Aunay to Villers-Bocage in the north and Thury-Harcourt to the south-east. The D54 joins Cahagnes and Caumont-l'Éventé in the north-west through the village to Roucamps, Le Plessis-Grimoult, and Condé-sur-Noireau in the south. The D26 goes to Vire via Danvou-la-Ferrière and Estry in the south-west. The D213 goes to Courvaudon in the east with the D234 branching to serve Bonnemaison. The D214 goes north to Longvillers. The D291A goes west to La Bigne.[3]

Aunay-sur-Odon is in the Drainage basin of the Orne by its tributary the Odon which crosses the commune from west to north and which has its source in the neighbouring commune of Ondefontaine. Several small tributaries feed it such as the Douvette which marks the boundary with Courvaudon in the east and the Ruisseau du Val Boquet on the north-west border.

The highest point of 307 to 310 metres (1,007 to 1,017 ft) is located in the south on the border with Roucamps in a wood overlooking a place called Pied de la Bruyère. The lowest point is at 98 metres (322 ft) corresponding to the exit of the Odon from the commune to the north. The commune is about one eighth urban, forested throughout the southern part, and Bocage on the rest.

As in all of western France, Aunay-sur-Odon has an oceanic climate. The nearest weather station is at Caen-Carpiquet 23 kilometres (14 mi) north-west.[4] Pré-Bocage country however differs in the annual rainfall which in Aunay-sur-Odon is around 950 mm.[5]

Neighbouring communes and villages[3][edit]

Toponymy[edit]

The name was attested as castellum Alnei in 1142.[6] It is derived from the Latin Alnus meaning "alder".[7]

In 1895 the commune of Aunay became Aunay-sur-Odon. The Odon passes along the west of the town.

History[edit]

The town is located that had been already occupied in the Gallo-Roman era as it was at the crossroads of ancient routes from Vieux to Avranches and from Bayeux to Condé-sur-Noireau.

The Roman de Rou by Wace mentions a Lord of Alnei[8] who participated in the conquest of England along with William the Conqueror. The remains of his castle from the 12th century, overlooking the present Petit Pied du Bois, are described in the third volume of the Monumental statistic of Calvados (French) by Arcisse de Caumont (1857).[9] The fortress was used until the Hundred Years War and was destroyed by Bertrand du Guesclin.[10]

In 1131 the town had an abbey founded by Jordan and Luce of Say and Richard of Hommet, constable of Normandy.[11] Originally dependent on Savigny Abbey, it became Cistercian at the end of the 12th century. It was heavily damaged in the wars of religion.[10]

On 22 August 1886 the Caen-Aunay-Saint-Georges railway line was opened. It was then extended to Vire on 1 June 1891.[12] Passenger service on the line was suspended on 1 March 1938. Freight service was limited to Jurques then permanently suspended. The line was then decommissioned. Today the Rue de la Gare is a reminder of the lost line.

Aerial photo during the bombing of Aunay-sur-Odon
Aerial photo after the bombing of Aunay-sur-Odon

In 1944 due to its position as a crossroads, this time between Caen and Vire and between Bayeux and Falaise, the city suffered two strategic bombardments by the allies. On 12 June two waves of aircraft destroyed all of the town centre killing a hundred people. On the night of 14 to 15 June the town was totally destroyed by a new wave of bombing.[13][14] The town was completely destroyed with the precarious bell tower the only remaining building. Over 25% of the inhabitants were killed.

Reconstruction was organized very quickly with the first stone of the new town being laid on 23 November 1947 by Mr. Kerisel, construction manager at the Ministry of Reconstruction and Urbanism. It was completed in 1951 under the leadership of architect P. Dureuil.

Heraldry[edit]

Arms of Aunay-sur-Odon
Blazon:

Barry of 12 Gules and Argent.



Administration[edit]

Aunay-sur-Odon Town Hall

The council is composed of 23 members including the mayor and six deputy mayors.

List of Successive Mayors[15]

Mayors from 1924
From To Name Party Position
1924 1965 Louis Lacaine
1965 1971 Marcel Hubert
1971 1988 André Brion
1988 2001 Marcel Bénard
2001 2008 Pierre Lefèvre Retired School Headmaster
2008 2012 Daniel Burtin[16] Territorial official
2013[17] 2020 Pierre Lefèvre[18]

(Not all data is known)

Police[edit]

A squadron of Mobile Gendarmerie (EGM 24/3) is based in Aunay-sur-Odon.

Education[edit]

Aunay-sur-Odon has a nursery school and a public elementary school. Secondary education is provided by the Charles Lemaître College who also host a general and vocational education section.

Twinning[edit]

Aunay-sur-Odon has twinning associations with:[19]

Demography[edit]

In 2010 the commune had 3,099 inhabitants. The evolution of the number of inhabitants is known from the population censuses conducted in the commune since 1793. From the 21st century, a census of communes with fewer than 10,000 inhabitants is held every five years, unlike larger towns that have a sample survey every year.[Note 1]

Evolution of the Population (See database)
1793 1800 1806 1821 1831 1836 1841 1846 1851
1,394 1,807 1,888 2,007 1,984 2,033 1,975 2,064 2,102
1856 1861 1866 1872 1876 1881 1886 1891 1896
2,042 2,005 2,057 1,921 1,925 1,948 1,898 1,858 1,854
1901 1906 1911 1921 1926 1931 1936 1946 1954
1,808 1,741 1,670 1,450 1,601 1,618 1,676 1,145 2,644
1962 1968 1975 1982 1990 1999 2006 2010 -
3,154 3,117 2,905 3,035 2,878 2,902 - 3,099 -

Sources : Ldh/EHESS/Cassini until 1962, INSEE database from 1968 (population without double counting and municipal population from 2006)


Population of Aunay-sur-Odon

Economy and tourism[edit]

Aunay-sur-Odon is part of the tourist destination of Bocage Normand. Guided tours of the city are available from the tourist office. There are hiking and biking trails at the entry point to Norman Switzerland.

Sites and Monuments[edit]

The Church of Saint-Samson.
  • Aunay Abbey: the remains of the Cistercian Abbey from the 12th century.
  • Motte-and-bailey castle.
  • Church of Saint Samson, rebuilt in the 20th century. It replaces the old church which was also dedicated to Saint Samson but was almost entirely destroyed by Allied bombing in June 1944. Arcisse de Caumont dated the old church from the end of the 16th century. The church which was rebuilt in 1951-1952 contains a very coherent iconographic ensemble conducted by a team that combined four artists: Jacques Le Chevallier, the programme manager, Maurice Rocher, and Paul and Jacques Bony.

Activities and events[edit]

  • The commune is a flowery city having obtained two flowers in the Competition of cities and villages in bloom.[20]
  • The AIPOS association organizes an annual cultural season in the communes of Aunay-sur-Odon and Villers-Bocage. Music, theatre, and dance. The opening show of the season is usually free. Others require a subscription or purchase of an entry ticket.
  • The Cinema Paradiso is a cooperative operation and offers the latest movies.

Sports[edit]

  • The Athletic Union of Aunay-sur-Odon fields a soccer team in the Lower Normandy league and was second in the district Division.[21]
  • The Sports and Leisure Club of Aunay-sur-Odon since 2007 has been the sports club for the Mobile Gendarmerie Squadron.
  • The Athletics club, the secular friends of Aunay-Villers-Évrecy (ALAVE) has catered for young people for over 40 years. The club is best known for its hammer throwers who several times qualified for the championships of France.
  • Aunay VTT allows all-terrain bikes to practice this sport.

Notable people linked to the commune[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]

Notes and references[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ At the beginning of the 21st century, the methods of identification have been modified by Law No. 2002-276 of 27 February 2002, the so-called "law of local democracy" and in particular Title V "census operations" allows, after a transitional period running from 2004 to 2008, the annual publication of the legal population of the different French administrative districts. For communes with a population greater than 10,000 inhabitants, a sample survey is conducted annually, the entire territory of these communes is taken into account at the end of the period of five years. The first "legal population" after 1999 under this new law came into force in 1 January 2009 and was based on the census of 2006.

References[edit]

  1. ^ Inhabitants of Calvados (French)
  2. ^ Aunay-sur-Odon in the Competition for Towns and Villages in Bloom (French)
  3. ^ a b Google Maps
  4. ^ Orthodromic distances from Lion 1906 website (French)
  5. ^ Normal Annual rainfall 1970-2000, consulted on 22 September 2013 (French)
  6. ^ Albert Dauzat and Charles Rostaing, Etymological Dictionary of place names in France, Larousse, Paris, 1963 (French)
  7. ^ René Lepelley, Etymological Dictionary of place names in Normandy, Éditions Charles Corlet, Condé-sur-Noireau, 1996, ISBN 2-95480-455-4 (ISBN is wrong from BnF), BnF 36174448w, p. 53 (French)
  8. ^ Wace, The Roman de Rou and the Dukes of Normandy, Vol. 2, p. 267, Read online (French)
  9. ^ Arcisse de Caumont, Monumental Statistic of Calvados, Hardel, Caen, 1857, Vol. 3 - Arrondissements of Vire and Bayeux, p. 240, Read online (French)
  10. ^ a b The heritage of communes in Calvados, Vol. 1, Flohic Éditions, March 2001, Paris, ISBN 2-84234-111-2, p. 49 (French)
  11. ^ Arcisse de Caumont, Monumental Statistic of Calvados, Hardel, Caen, 1857, Vol. 3 - Arrondissements of Vire and Bayeux, p. 240, Read online (French)
  12. ^ Chronological History of European and Russian railways (French)
  13. ^ Aunay-sur-Odon on normandiememoire.com website
  14. ^ The spectre of Aunay-sur-Odon on the INA website (French)
  15. ^ List of Mayors of France (French)
  16. ^ Mayor Daniel Burtin is deceased, Ouest-france.fr - Aunay-sur-Odon, consulted on 20 December 2012 (French)
  17. ^ - Pierre Lefèvre takes the chair of Mayor until March 2014, Ouest-france.fr - Aunay-sur-Odon, consulted on 5 July 2013 (French)
  18. ^ Reelection 2014: Pierre Lefèvre has been reelected Mayor, Ouest-france.fr, consulted on 1 April 2014 (French)
  19. ^ National Commission for Decentralised cooperation (French)
  20. ^ Prizes for the competition of towns and villages in bloom, consulted on 28 October 2012 (French)
  21. ^ Lower Normandy League official website, consulted on 22 September 2013 (French)