The Chatou Fair… a history, a place, an ambience

Picturesque  and  not  to  be  missed,  The Foire de Chatou has set up its stalls on the Impressionists’  Island  at  Chatou since 1970; but its origins date back to the mediaeval Foire aux  Salaisons, the Salt Meats Fair, a great Gallic tradition. In 1840 the fair took up  fixed residence on the Boulevard Bourdon, near the Place de la Bastille in Paris. At the same time the city’s scrap dealers and junk merchants started their own fair next door, a proximity that linked the future of the two fairs together. In 1869 they were  both  moved  to  the  Boulevard  Richard Lenoir, where they remained for nearly a century, initially taking place once a year, and from 1940 onwards twice-yearly.

 

 

 

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The fair was then known as the Foire à la ferraille, aux pains d’épices et aux jambons – the scrap metal, gingerbread and ham fair. Stallholders would bake little gingerbread pigs  decorated  with  their  favourite  Christian names, a custom reflected in the Foire de Chatou’s little pig logo. In 1970 the Prefect of Paris, the capital’s top administrator, ordered the fair out of the city. But rather than see it die, the SNCAO-GA stepped in with a rescue plan, installing it on Chatou’s Impressionists’ Island. The march 2017 fair will be the 94th on its present site.

 

 

Antiquités, brocante, galeries d'art, produits du terroir