Printer-friendly version

Current Size: 100%

Rochefort, the town of a Naval Dockyard

Rochefort, a Naval Dockyard town with a royal destiny

Rochefort, military town of Charente-Maritime was born from a king’s dream “Le Roi Soleil”, Louis the 14th who’s ambition was to have control over the land and the sea.

He gave the task of building the dockyards to Colbert his minister telling him that he wished “the most beautiful and the biggest Arsenal in the “Ponant” on this marshy territory.

Daughter of the sea, feet on the ground but with a look towards the ocean, Rochefort is a unique town with a royal destiny.

French magazine


The testimonies of the history of Rochefort

While in Rochefort, take a walk around town and you will find lots of testimonies of the glorious days of the town, when its Naval Dockyard was full of activities and ships to build, buzzing with the energy of its workers.

During the 17th up to the 19th century, the Naval Dockyard was the center of attention of the town, which was itself built around the dockyard. 

Many buildings were opened to serve the Naval Dockyard, such as the Corderie Royale, where ropes were made to equip the frigates, dry docks were built along the river to build the ships in them ; you can now find three of them in Rochefort. Other buildings such as the Marine Hospital, opened in 1788 and later on the Naval Medicine School was created to train young surgeons who will go on board of the ships. 

To discover more on the story of the Naval Dockyard of Rochefort, go to the National Marine Museum of Rochefort, where there are unique collections.                

For more details on the Former Naval Medecine School and the National Marine Museum , visit the official website HERE