The car of Doctor Desourteaux showing increasing signs of decay
This photograph was taken in October 2018 and shows the front of The Doctor's Car, a Peugeot model 202 dating from about 1940. As can be seen, apart from the complete absence of paint, the rusty bodywork is starting to show extensive growth of primitive plant / lichen forms. Some years ago, I saw in a video about Oradour an attempt to preserve the car by coating it with a wax product in order to slow down the rate of decay; this process urgently needs repeating. It is true that nothing lasts forever and so a process of decay is inevitable, but here in Oradour-sur-Glane, a site dedicated to helping us all to, Remember!, more of an effort should be made.
The car has, over the years undergone several indignities, such as having the steering wheel disappear and reappear, then disappear again (the current case). The car has suffered at the hands of souvenir hunters, and from people wanting spare parts and is now little more than a fragile shell. If you look at the passenger-side wing, you can see that it has been pulled away from the bonnet (just before this photograph was taken, a little boy of about 3-4 years age, was determinedly pulling at the radiator grill, much to the amusement of his father). It is sad to say that today, Oradour does not command the same respect as it did even just 20 years ago.
Have a look at the photographs showing the decay and restoration attempts over the last 20 years and you can see that without a considerable amount of sensitive repair work, soon there will be nothing left.
© Michael Williams: January 2019