la ville de Viry-Châtillon
>>Site de Club de jumelage Viry Châtillon - Wokingham
No, you can´t see the Eiffel Tower from Viry-Châtillon, but there´s a very good chance you´ll catch a glimpse of it on your journey to Viry. Viry-Châtillon is situated about 12 kilometres south of Paris, close to Orly airport, alongside the N7 and close to the river Seine.
On opening a map of the Isle-de-France region for the first time, Viry-Châtillon does not stand out. However the town is of regional importance. The Paris to Orleans mainline railway, the Paris to Lyon motorway and the Montereau to Paris to Rouen waterway all pass through or close to Viry. The town is situated about 12 kilometres south of Paris, close to Orly airport, alongside the N7 and close to the river Seine.
Historically Viry-Châtillon came about from the joining of two villages - Viry sur Seine and Châtillon sur Orge. Mention of Viry can he found in solicitors records, dated 1093, at Longpont Abbey within which are named a certain Mr Vilgrin, horseman and Lord of Longpont. Châtillon on the other hand was known to be the site of a feudal castle on the banks of the river Seine Viry, which houses many historical buildings the most famous of which is Saint Deny´s church dating from the twelfth century, was known as a resort area for Parisian nobles and gentry as early as the sixteenth century.
Many well known people such as Marshall Marmont came to live in Viry as did the Perrault brothers. Charles Perrault was a well known story writer and author of the well known fairy tales Little Red Riding Hood and Cinderella. Le Notre created the gardens of the Orange grove and Louis the fourteenth considered choosing Viry for his residence, before finally settling on Versailles.
Châtillon, meanwhile, had become one of the cornerstones of regional development, with its port on the Seine dealing in wine, grain and coal.
The joining of the two villages took place in 1490, with the creation of Viry-Châtillon The town´s first mayor, Mr Larue, took office in 1790 when the population was 408. The coming of the railway and the aeroplane at the beginning of the century played an important role in Viry-Châtillon´s development Especially important was the creation of Port Aviation, the world´s first aerodrome.
In more recent times quarries and sandpits have played an equally important role in the town´s development. The result of these workings is the fine set of lakes and associated water sports facilities that Viry is justly renowned for. The lakes offer sailing, water-ski, power boat and diving activities, all of which can be viewed from the town´s chair lift. There are also two swimming pools (indoor and outdoor), two large sports stadia, five gymnasia, 15 tennis courts; and an ice rink which is home to one of France´s leading ice hockey teams. Sport holds an important place in lives of the people of Viry-Châtillon, but there are many cultural activities that also take place in the town.
Saint Deny´s Church is the home of a famous music festival, there are three cultural centres which offer numerous activities in various parts of the town, and the festival which takes place on the lake attracts large crowds from all over the area. The Place de la Republique, in the centre of the town is dominated by the Hotel de Ville, or Town Hall. This imposing classically styled building with its fountains to the front and beautiful Mayors Garden to the rear, is typically French. Viry-Châtillon has a blend of old and modern architecture from period houses and public buildings, to modern apartments and shops.
A short walk from the Hotel de Ville will take you to the Market Place which has an indoor market surrounded by stalls and a mixture of boutiques and traditional French shops The market, open on Sundays, is always very popular with visitors. There are pleasant walks around the town, cafes and bars, and a number of fine restaurants. The Orangery, the Church of Saint Denys, the Shell Chapel, and la Ferme are some of the other local landmarks.