Des visiteurs venus de loin (suite)

Nous avons eu le plaisir d’accueillir l’an dernier des visiteurs venus de loin.

Voici le récit en anglais de leur visite.

Iron wire of the winch : le Treuil d’Eméville

 First a brief introduction of who we are. We are a group of cataphiles from Maastricht. For a long time we visit the quarries in Maastricht and surroundings. This for hobby, interest in the history, as key-keeper of underground quarries and also as guides for the tourist office in Maastricht. Ever since 1995 we visit the area of Soissons / Vic sur Aisne scouting for new quarries, the history due to the “Grande Guerre” is very rich in this area. We try to visit the area twice per year for a long weekend. In the visit of 2010 we first came by the Carriere Sarazin at the Treuil d’Eméville. We met Eric (a local member of Carrières Patrimoine association), at the entrance, and he explained a lot about the Treuil d’Eméville. We then where invited to his house, and after a study of the map he showed us some carrieres in the near surroundings. Ever since this event we were trying to visit the Treuil d’Eméville.

After some mail conversations, we finally got a chance to visit Carrieres Patrimoine at the 17 may 2014. We were very excited to visit, because this is not a place a lot of people have seen yet. When we arrived at the site we met Francois, Erik, and a lot of other members of the association. Especially it was very nice to see Quang again, an old friend who we met in the 90’s.

Preparing to go down. To enter the Carriere Sarazin we needed to use climbing gear. We needed to go down a vertical drop to enter here. Ropes where suspended from the “new” entrance, this was our way in!

Inside the quarry

After all preparations where done we were lowered into the quarry. This was a very special experience, for the first time down in a treuil. When we all were down it seemed like we went back in time. For the first time we see a quarry in this area were the rails, carts and winches are still present, preserved in this time capsule! We got the grand tour and got all the time to ask questions, and take pictures. We got a good view of all the tools used to excavate the stone and got good explanation of them. We also got the chance to work like a “blokbreker”(stone worker) in France where there is a complete different way of extracting the stone than we are used to in Maastricht and surroundings. At the end of the tour we were hoisted out of the quarry with a rope-pulley system, this was a special experience to have.

We notice that the volunteers are very passionate about their quarry. They are all very willing to explain and show all the details that can be found on this site. This is something a place like this really needs, a group of people who care about the heritage, history and preservation. In this way more people in the future can enjoy and learn from this experience.

I hope we can visit and meet again in the future.

Merci, Rik, Norbert et Marc


(c) Photos Marc Koch


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