Beaulieu Forge and petrol pump

    This view shows another entrance to the Beaulieu blacksmith's forge and the village petrol pump on the Rue Emile Desourteaux. What seems a little strange to 21st century safety-conscious eyes is that the tram tracks run directly in front of the pump, so anyone buying fuel would be parked on them. To the left, at the rear of this view, some car roofs are visible. Also see the photograph of the adjacent area to the right of view where some visiting cyclists were shot and another of the Forge with the Champ de Foire. The inscription on the plaque reads, "Here at this place of torment a group of men were massacred and burnt by Nazis. Collect your thoughts". See the village plan for location details.

    Sadly, I noticed in October 2019 that the Identification Label on the petrol pump shown below, had vanished. Whether this was due to corrosion and it had fallen off, or it had been stolen by a souvenir hunter, I could not tell. This kind of loss, leads inevitably to a reduction in the value of the ruins as a means of engaging the visitor in the horror of the event. Inevitably, restoration and / or replacement will become necessary in order to continue to give a sense that the event happened recently. The buildings can and are being conserved on an ongoing basis, but little has been done to preserve other remains, such as the petrol pump (the Doctor's Car is another case where decay has become a real problem).

Beaulieu forge and Oradour village petrol pump
The Oradour village petrol pump in front of the Beaulieu forge

Identification label on the Oradour village petrol pump
Identification label on the Oradour village petrol pump (still shiny after 70 years)

 

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© Michael Williams ... revised November 2019