Rennes is a city in the east of Brittany in northwestern France at the confluence of the Ille and the Vilaine. Rennes is the capital of the region of Brittany, as well as the Ille-et-Vilaine department. Rennes's history goes back more than 2,000 years, at a time when it was a small Gallic village named Condate. Together with Vannes and Nantes, it was one of the major cities of the ancient Duchy of Brittany. From the early sixteenth century until the French Revolution, Rennes was a parliamentary and garrison city of the historic province of Brittany of the Kingdom of France. Since the 1950s, Rennes has grown in importance through rural flight and its modern industrial development automotive; the city developed extensive building plans to accommodate upwards of 200,000 inhabitants. During the 1980s, Rennes became one of the main centres in telecommunication and high technology industry, it is now a significant digital innovation centre in France. In 2015, the city was the tenth largest in France, with a metropolitan area of about 720,000 inhabitants.

With more than 66,000 students in 2016, it is the eighth-largest university campus of France. The inhabitants of Rennes are called Rennais in French. In 2018, L'Express named Rennes as "the most liveable city in France". Since 2015, Rennes is divided into 6 cantons: Canton of Rennes-1 Canton of Rennes-2 Canton of Rennes-3, which includes parts of Rennes but the commune of Chantepie Canton of Rennes-4 Canton of Rennes-5, which includes parts of Rennes but the commune of Saint-Jacques-de-la-Lande Canton of Rennes-6, which includes parts of Rennes but the commune of Pacé Rennes is divided into 12 quarters: Le Centre Thabor/Saint Hélier Bourg l'Évêque-Moulin du Comte Saint-Martin Maurepas-Patton-Bellangerais Jeanne d'Arc-Longs-Champs-Beaulieu Francisco Ferrer-Landry-Poterie Sud Gare Cleunay-Arsenal-Redon Villejean-Beauregard Le Blosne Bréquigny The current mayor of Rennes is Nathalie Appéré. A member of the Socialist Party, she replaced retiring Socialist incumbent Daniel Delaveau, in office from 2008 to 2014.

Edmond Hervé, Socialist mayor from 1977 to 2008. Among previous well-known mayors are: Jean Janvier, from 1908 to 1923; the mairie is right in the centre of Rennes. The French Prison Service operates the Centre pénitentiaire de Rennes, the largest women's prison in France; the ancient centre of the town is built on a hill, with the north side being more elevated than the south side. It is at the confluence of two rivers: the Vilaine. Rennes is located on 50 km from the English Channel. Rennes has the distinction of having a significant Green Belt around its ring road; this Green Belt is the rest of its urban area. Rennes features an oceanic climate. Precipitation in Rennes is less abundant than in the western parts of Brittany, reaching only half of the levels of, e.g. the city of Quimper, which makes rainfall in Rennes comparable to the levels of larger parts of western Germany. Sunshine hours range between 1,700 and 1,850 annually, about the amount of sunshine received by the city of Lausanne. In 2018, the inner population of the city was of 221,272 inhabitants, the Rennes intercommunal structure connecting Rennes with 42 nearby suburbs counted 450,593 inhabitants and the metropolitan area counted over 720,000 inhabitants.

Rennes has the second fastest-growing metropolitan area in France after Toulouse and before Montpellier and Nantes. The inhabitants of Rennes are called Rennais in French. Rennes is classified as a city of history; the historic centre is located on the former plan of the ramparts. There is a difference between the northern city centre and the southern city centre due to the 1720 fire, which destroyed most of the timber framed houses in the northern part of the city; the rebuilding was done on a grid plan. The southern part, the poorest at this time, was not rebuilt. Due to the presence of the parlement de Bretagne, many "hôtels particuliers" were built in the northern part, the richest in the 18th century. Most of the monuments historiques can be found there. Colourful traditional half-timbered houses are situated along the roads of Saint-Sauveur, Saint-Georges, de Saint-Malo, Saint-Guillaume, des Dames, du Chapitre, Saint-Michel, de la Psallette and around the plazas of Champ-Jacquet, des Lices, Saint-Anne and Rallier-du-Baty.

The Parlement de Bretagne is the most famous 17th century building in Rennes. It was rebuilt after a terrible fire in 1994 that may have been caused by a flare fired by a protester during a demonstration, it houses the Rennes Court of Appeal. The plaza around is built on the classical architecture. On the west, the Place de la Mairie: City Hall OperaOn the east, at the end of the Rue Saint-Georges with traditional half-timbered houses: 1920s Saint George Municipal Pool, with mosaics Saint George Palace, its gardenOn the south-east: Saint-Germain square Saint-Germain Church Saint-Germain footbridge

Westland Westminster

The Westland Westminster was a British helicopter of the 1950s from Westland Aircraft. A large cargo design, it was powered by two turboshaft engines driving a five-bladed rotor. Unclad, the all-metal airframe was enclosed in a fabric covering. Designed and built as a private venture without government assistance, it was cancelled when Westland took over rival helicopter producers and their more advanced projects; the Westminster was the first tangible result of efforts that Westland Aircraft had been making throughout the 1950s to produce a gas-turbine-powered heavy-lift helicopter. Projects ranged up to the remarkable W.90, a 450-seat troopship with three Sapphire turbojets mounted on its rotor-tips. In 1954, Westland investigated licensed manufacture of the Sikorsky S-56 for the civil market with turboshaft power; the company sought Ministry of Supply support for the proposal. In June 1958, Westland obtained an extension to their licence agreement with Sikorsky to cover the five bladed main-rotor, tail-rotor and control systems of the S-56.

Faced with continuing government indifference, Westland decided to press ahead with a private-venture design for a heavy-lift transport, built around the S-56 systems but powered by a pair of Napier Eland turboshafts. At the time, Westland was committed to development of the Wessex and the Westminster project had to be run on a shoestring. Two variants were envisioned: a 40-seat, short-range civil transport and a flying crane with a 15,000 lb capacity. In March 1956, Westland decided to build the first prototype as a flying test rig with a tubular steel space frame in place of the main fuselage. With economy a priority, off-the-shelf components were used as far as possible, with donors such as the Westland Whirlwind helicopter and the Bristol Freighter aeroplane; this prototype was completed in February 1958. Flight testing showed up significant vibration; as a result, a number of changes were made in the design of the second prototype, including replacement of the main-rotor with the six-blade unit from the Sikorsky S-64.

Once the statutory ten hours had been flown, this first Westminster was registered G-APLE and work started on constructing the second prototype. Around this time, the Admiralty began to feel that the Westminster project was delaying development of the Wessex. Although this was mere fancy, it boded ill for the larger aircraft. For the moment, work continued, it first flew in this form on 12 June 1960. The second prototype, registered G-APTX flew on 5 September 1959 and flight testing continued, but the British helicopter industry was in a state of flux. In the process, Westland acquired two potential rivals to the Westminster: the projected Bristol 194 and the Fairey Rotodyne. Rationalisation was necessary and since the Rotodyne was flying and government funded, work on the Westminster ceased in September 1960; the two aircraft were broken up. Data from Westland Aircraft since 1915General characteristics Crew: 2 Capacity: 40 passengers Length: 89 ft 9 in Fuselage length: 71 ft 4 in Rotor diameter: 72 ft 0 in Height: 21 ft 1 in Disc area: 4,069 ft² Empty weight: 21,245 lb Loaded weight: 33,000 lb Powerplant: 2 × Napier Eland E220 turboshaft, 2,920 hp eachPerformance Maximum speed: 155 mph Cruise speed: 115 mph Range: 120 mi estimated for production model Aircraft of comparable role and era CH-37 Mojave Notes Bibliography Westland

Mosque of Muhammad Ali

The Great Mosque of Muhammad Ali Pasha or Alabaster Mosque is a mosque situated in the Citadel of Cairo in Egypt and was commissioned by Muhammad Ali Pasha between 1830 and 1848. Situated on the summit of the citadel, this Ottoman mosque, the largest to be built in the first half of the 19th century, is, with its animated silhouette and twin minarets, the most visible mosque in Cairo; the mosque was built in memory of Tusun Pasha, Muhammad Ali's oldest son, who died in 1816. This mosque, along with the citadel, is one of the landmarks and tourist attractions of Cairo and is one of the first features to be seen when approaching the city from any direction; the mosque was built on the site of old Mamluk buildings in Cairo's Citadel between 1830 and 1848, although not completed until the reign of Said Pasha in 1857. The architect was Yusuf Bushnak from Istanbul and its model was the Sultan Ahmed Mosque in that city; the ground on which the mosque was erected was built with debris from the earlier buildings of the Citadel.

Before completion of the mosque, the alabastered panels from the upper walls were taken away and used for the palaces of Abbas I. The stripped walls were clad with wood painted to look like marble. In 1899 the mosque showed signs of cracking and some inadequate repairs were undertaken, but the condition of the mosque became so dangerous that a complete scheme of restoration was ordered by King Fuad in 1931 and was completed under King Farouk in 1939. Muhammad Ali Pasha was buried in a tomb carved in the courtyard of the mosque, his body was transferred here from Hosh al-Basha in 1857. Muhammad Ali chose to build his state mosque in the architectural style of his former overlords, the Ottomans, unlike the Mamluks who, despite their political submission to the Ottomans, stuck to the architectural styles of the previous Mamluk dynasties; the mosque was built with a central dome surrounded by four four semicircular domes. It was measured 41x41 meters; the central dome is 21 meters in diameter and the height of the building is 52 meters.

Two elegant cylindrical minarets of Turkish type with two balconies and conical caps are situated on the western side of the mosque, rise to 82 meters. The use of this style, combined with the presence of two minarets and multiple half-domes surrounding the central dome — features reserved for mosques built on the authority of the Sultan — were a defiant declaration of de facto Egyptian independence; the main material is limestone sourced from the Great Pyramids of Giza but the lower storey and forecourt is tiled with alabaster up to 11,3 meters. The external facades are severe and angular and rise about four storeys until the level of the lead-covered domes; the mihrab on the southeastern wall is three storeys high and covered with a semicircular dome. There are two arcades on the second storey, covered with domes. Although there are three entrances on each side of the forecourt, the usual entry is through the northeastern gate; the forecourt measures 50x50 meters. It is covered by domes. There is a brass clock tower in the middle of the northwestern riwak, presented to Muhammad Ali by King Louis Philippe of France in 1845.

The clock was reciprocated with the obelisk of Luxor now standing in Place de la Concorde in Paris. The interior gives a great feeling of space; the use of two levels of domes gives a much greater sense of space than there is. The central dome rises on four arches standing on colossal piers. There are four semicircular domes around the central dome. There are four smaller domes on the corners as well; the domes are embellished with motifs in relief. The walls and pillars are covered with alabaster up to 11 meters high. List of mosques in Cairo Islamic art Islamic architecture Ottoman architecture List of mausolea Media related to Muhammad Ali Mosque at Wikimedia Commons