Cassel

FRANCE NORD moulin cassel

Cassel (pop 2,300) is a small hilltop village, located a few kilometres southeast of Dunkirk. This tiny village was once a bustling Roman urban centre and was much fought over, as hills were rare in French Flanders. Cassel remained an important village even after the end of the Roman Empire due to its strategic location. It became a fortified Flanders village until it was annexed to France in the 17th century. Cassel served a military function again during the First World War, when it became the headquarters of Maréchal Ferdinand Foch; s well as the rearguard site of the British troops which defended Dunkirk.

You can arrive at Cassel via train, which stop about 3km west of the village. There isn’t any public transportation that runs to the village centre from here, so try to get your own set of wheels.

The beautiful plains of the French Flanders will greet you upon your arrival at the village. Be sure to head on to the strikingly Flemish Grand Place- a cobblestoned area with narrow streets that lead up to the ancient ramparts. You can then pop by the Hôtel de la Noble Cour to visit the Musée de Flandre [26 Grand Place +33 359734579 http://museedeflandre.cg59.fr ad/ch €5/Free]
which is dedicated to preserving and displaying the art and history of the French Flanders region. . This 16th century mansion is built in the French Renaissance style and was once the home of the noble court of the Lords of Cassel.

Also recommended is a walk to the highest point of Mont Cassel (the hill on top of which this village stands) to sight the wooden Moulin (windmill) [+33 328405255 www.ot-cassel.fr ad/ch €3/Free]. This moulin still mills wheat flour and presses linseed oil, just the way it did centuries ago. Cassel used to house more than twenty such windmills; however, most of them were destroyed leaving behind this lone survivor.

 

 

 


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CASSEL1. Hôtel de la Noble Cour & Musée de Flandre, Grand Place  2. Mont Cassel  3. Moulin