Achiet-le-Grand is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department in northern France. A farming village located 12 miles south of Arras, at the D7 and D9 road junction; the SNCF railway has a station here. The commune was involved in the theatre of operations of the Battle of Bapaume, during the Franco-Prussian War; the village was twinned with Kings Langley in Hertfordshire, England in November 2009, in honour of Christopher Cox VC from that village who won a Victoria Cross in fighting near Achiet-le-Grand in World War I. The church of St. John, dating from the twentieth century. A World War I cemetery. Communes of the Pas-de-Calais department INSEE commune file The World War I cemetery South Africans buried in Achiet-le-Grand Communal Cemetery Extension A personal website about Achiet-le-Grand Achiet-le-Grand during WW1 Official communal website
Acheville is a commune in the Pas-de-Calais department in northern France. Acheville is situated some 4 miles southeast of Lens, on the D33. Communes of the Pas-de-Calais department INSEE commune file Website of the Communaupole de Lens-Liévin Acheville on the Quid website
France the French Republic, is a country whose territory consists of metropolitan France in Western Europe and several overseas regions and territories. The metropolitan area of France extends from the Mediterranean Sea to the English Channel and the North Sea, from the Rhine to the Atlantic Ocean, it is bordered by Belgium and Germany to the northeast and Italy to the east, Andorra and Spain to the south. The overseas territories include French Guiana in South America and several islands in the Atlantic and Indian oceans; the country's 18 integral regions span a combined area of 643,801 square kilometres and a total population of 67.3 million. France, a sovereign state, is a unitary semi-presidential republic with its capital in Paris, the country's largest city and main cultural and commercial centre. Other major urban areas include Lyon, Toulouse, Bordeaux and Nice. During the Iron Age, what is now metropolitan France was inhabited by a Celtic people. Rome annexed the area in 51 BC, holding it until the arrival of Germanic Franks in 476, who formed the Kingdom of Francia.
The Treaty of Verdun of 843 partitioned Francia into Middle Francia and West Francia. West Francia which became the Kingdom of France in 987 emerged as a major European power in the Late Middle Ages following its victory in the Hundred Years' War. During the Renaissance, French culture flourished and a global colonial empire was established, which by the 20th century would become the second largest in the world; the 16th century was dominated by religious civil wars between Protestants. France became Europe's dominant cultural and military power in the 17th century under Louis XIV. In the late 18th century, the French Revolution overthrew the absolute monarchy, established one of modern history's earliest republics, saw the drafting of the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, which expresses the nation's ideals to this day. In the 19th century, Napoleon established the First French Empire, his subsequent Napoleonic Wars shaped the course of continental Europe. Following the collapse of the Empire, France endured a tumultuous succession of governments culminating with the establishment of the French Third Republic in 1870.
France was a major participant in World War I, from which it emerged victorious, was one of the Allies in World War II, but came under occupation by the Axis powers in 1940. Following liberation in 1944, a Fourth Republic was established and dissolved in the course of the Algerian War; the Fifth Republic, led by Charles de Gaulle, remains today. Algeria and nearly all the other colonies became independent in the 1960s and retained close economic and military connections with France. France has long been a global centre of art and philosophy, it hosts the world's fourth-largest number of UNESCO World Heritage Sites and is the leading tourist destination, receiving around 83 million foreign visitors annually. France is a developed country with the world's sixth-largest economy by nominal GDP, tenth-largest by purchasing power parity. In terms of aggregate household wealth, it ranks fourth in the world. France performs well in international rankings of education, health care, life expectancy, human development.
France is considered a great power in global affairs, being one of the five permanent members of the United Nations Security Council with the power to veto and an official nuclear-weapon state. It is a leading member state of the European Union and the Eurozone, a member of the Group of 7, North Atlantic Treaty Organization, Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, the World Trade Organization, La Francophonie. Applied to the whole Frankish Empire, the name "France" comes from the Latin "Francia", or "country of the Franks". Modern France is still named today "Francia" in Italian and Spanish, "Frankreich" in German and "Frankrijk" in Dutch, all of which have more or less the same historical meaning. There are various theories as to the origin of the name Frank. Following the precedents of Edward Gibbon and Jacob Grimm, the name of the Franks has been linked with the word frank in English, it has been suggested that the meaning of "free" was adopted because, after the conquest of Gaul, only Franks were free of taxation.
Another theory is that it is derived from the Proto-Germanic word frankon, which translates as javelin or lance as the throwing axe of the Franks was known as a francisca. However, it has been determined that these weapons were named because of their use by the Franks, not the other way around; the oldest traces of human life in what is now France date from 1.8 million years ago. Over the ensuing millennia, Humans were confronted by a harsh and variable climate, marked by several glacial eras. Early hominids led a nomadic hunter-gatherer life. France has a large number of decorated caves from the upper Palaeolithic era, including one of the most famous and best preserved, Lascaux. At the end of the last glacial period, the climate became milder. After strong demographic and agricultural development between the 4th and 3rd millennia, metallurgy appeared at the end of the 3rd millennium working gold and bronze, iron. France has numerous megalithic sites from the Neolithic period, including the exceptiona
Hauts-de-France, is a region of France created by the territorial reform of French Regions in 2014, from a merger of Nord-Pas-de-Calais and Picardy. Its capital is Lille; the new region came into existence on 1 January 2016, after the regional elections in December 2015. France's Conseil d'État approved Hauts-de-France as the name of the region on 28 September 2016, effective 30 September 2016. With 6,009,976 inhabitants, a population of 189 inhabitants/km2, it represents the 3rd most populous region in France and the 2nd most densely populated in metropolitan France after Île-de-France; the region covers an area of more than 31,813 km2. It borders Normandy, Grand Est, Île-de-France and the United Kingdom via the English Channel; the region's interim name Nord-Pas-de-Calais-Picardie was a hyphenated placename, created by hyphenating the merged regions' names—Nord-Pas-de-Calais and Picardie—in alphabetical order. On 14 March 2016, well ahead of the 1 July deadline, the Regional council decided on Hauts-de-France as the region's permanent name.
The provisional name of the region was retired on 30 September 2016, when the new name of the region, Hauts-de-France, took effect. The region borders Belgium to the northeast, the English Channel to the northwest, as well as the French regions of Grand Est to the southeast, Île-de-France to the south, Normandy to the southwest, it is connected to the United Kingdom via the Channel Tunnel. Hauts-de-France comprises five departments: Aisne, Oise, Pas-de-Calais, Somme. Lille Amiens Roubaix Tourcoing Dunkirk Calais Villeneuve-d'Ascq Saint-Quentin Beauvais Valenciennes The region was a pivotal center of mulquinerie Nord-Pas-de-Calais Picardy Regions of France Canadian National Vimy Memorial Battle of Vimy Ridge Regional Council of the Hauts-de-France Official website Merger of the regions - France 3
Top Gear (2002 TV series)
Top Gear is a British motoring magazine, factual television series, conceived by Jeremy Clarkson and Andy Wilman, launched on 20 October 2002, broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Two. The programme is a relaunched version of the original 1977 show of the same name, which looks at various motor vehicles cars. While the original format focused on review of cars, the 2002 version expanded on this with motoring-based challenges, special races, timed laps of notable cars, celebrity timed laps on a course specially-designed for the relaunched programme, with its format developing over time to focus on a more quirky and sometimes controversial style of presentation; the programme has received acclaim for its visual style and presentation, as well as criticism for its content. Since 2002, the programme has been presented by several hosts. In its first series, the show's line-up was Clarkson, Richard Hammond and Jason Dawe, with Wilman as the show's executive producer, introducing anonymous test driver "The Stig", an individual played by numerous racing drivers over the course of the show's history.
Following the first series, Dawe was replaced by James May, with the line-up unchanged until the end of the twenty-second series, when the BBC chose to not renew Clarkson's contract on 25 March 2015, following an incident during filming. His dismissal from Top Gear prompted the departure of Hammond and Wilman from the programme, led to them joining Clarkson in forming a new motoring series. For the twenty-third series, the programme was presented by Chris Evans and American Matt LeBlanc, with them joined by four co-presenters who would make occasional appearances during its run: Rory Reid, Sabine Schmitz, Chris Harris and Eddie Jordan. After negative feedback on this series led to Evans resigning from the programme and Reid became the main hosts alongside LeBlanc, with Schmitz and Jordan making occasional appearances as co-presenters, from the twenty-fourth series onwards. Since its relaunch, Top Gear is one of the BBC's most commercially successful programmes, it has become a significant show in British popular culture, with episodes broadcast internationally in many countries in Europe, North America, South-East Asia and more, making it the most broadcast factual television programme in the world.
Its success has led to various forms of merchandising, including live tours, special DVD editions, books, as well as spawning a variety of international versions in various countries, including the United States, South Korea and France. After the BBC cancelled the original format of Top Gear in December 2001, Jeremy Clarkson and producer Andy Wilman met together to work out ideas for reviving the programme for television; this led to them meeting the broadcaster to pitch the idea of changing it from a motoring magazine format to one, studio-based. Amongst the ideas that were pitched included: the involvement of a fixed location for car reviews and other films, alongside location across Britain and abroad. Following the pitch, the BBC decided to green-light the new format, in order to create a programme to compete with Channel 5's new motoring show Fifth Gear, from which several original Top Gear presenters including Tiff Needell, Vicki Butler-Henderson and producer Jon Bentley went to. Production began in mid-2002, with the broadcaster securing the right to use Dunsfold Aerodrome, an airport and business park in Waverley, Surrey, as the programme's fixed location – while its runways and taxiways were allocated for reviews and other films, one of the site's large aircraft hangars was transformed into Top Gear's new studio.
To match the proposed ideas for the new format, the BBC gained assistance from Lotus to design a race circuit for use on the programme that would be situated at the fixed location, while editing of films that were recorded for each episode, focused on extending the runtime of the programme to one hour. Wilman took on the role of the show's executive producer, while Clarkson became part of the hosting line-up; because those who had worked with Clarkson on the original programme had left the BBC to work on Fifth Gear, the production team arranged for him to be joined by Richard Hammond and Jason Dawe. A difficulty found during production revolved around the show's test driver – neither Clarkson or Wilman could find a racing driver with experience at speaking on-camera. In discussions over this, the pair opted to make the driver silent, having their identity concealed; when they recruited Perry McCarthy amongst their possible candidates for the role, his input led to Wilman choosing to nickname the test driver as The Stig.
To date, there have been eleven presenters of the show: Main presenters Chris Harris – Paddy McGuinness – Andrew Flintoff –"The Stig" Perry McCarthy – Ben Collins – Unknown – Past presenters Jason Dawe – Jeremy Clarkson – Richard Hammond – James May – Chris Evans – Eddie Jordan – Sabine Schmitz – Matt LeBlanc – Rory Reid – The first series of the new format of Top Gear premiered on 20 October 2002. In its early state, the programme's segments were based on elements of the previous format, such as interviews and viewers' letters, but featured some new humorous elements, such as the p
Calais is a city and major ferry port in northern France in the department of Pas-de-Calais, of which it is a sub-prefecture. Although Calais is by far the largest city in Pas-de-Calais, the department's prefecture is its third-largest city of Arras; the population of the metropolitan area at the 2010 census was 126,395. Calais overlooks the Strait of Dover, the narrowest point in the English Channel, only 34 km wide here, is the closest French town to England; the White Cliffs of Dover can be seen on a clear day from Calais. Calais is a major port for ferries between France and England, since 1994, the Channel Tunnel has linked nearby Coquelles to Folkestone by rail. Due to its position, Calais since the Middle Ages has been a major port and a important centre for transport and trading with England, it grew into a thriving centre for wool production. The town came to be called the "brightest jewel in the English crown" owing to its great importance as the gateway for the tin, lead and wool trades.
Calais was a territorial possession of England until its capture by France in 1558. The town was razed to the ground during World War II, when in May 1940, it was a strategic bombing target of the invading German forces who took the town during the Siege of Calais. During World War II, the Germans built massive bunkers along the coast in preparation for launching missiles on England; the old part of the town, Calais proper, is situated on an artificial island surrounded by canals and harbours. The modern part of the town, St-Pierre, lies to the south-east. In the centre of the old town is the Place d'Armes, in which stands the Tour du Guet, or watch-tower, a structure built in the 13th century, used as a lighthouse until 1848 when a new lighthouse was built by the port. South east of the Place is the church of Notre-Dame, built during the English occupancy of Calais, it is arguably the only church built in the English perpendicular style in all of France. In this church former French President Charles de Gaulle married his wife Yvonne Vendroux.
South of the Place and opposite the Parc St Pierre is the Hôtel-de-ville, the belfry from the 16th and early 17th centuries. Today, Calais is visited by more than 10 million annually. Aside from being a key transport hub, Calais is a notable fishing port and a centre for fish marketing, some 3,000 people are still employed in the lace industry for which the town is famed; the early history of habitation in the area is limited. The Romans called the settlement Caletum. Julius Caesar mustered 800 to 1,000 sailing boats, five legions and some 2,000 horses at Calais, due to its strategic position, to attack Britannia; the English could hold on to it for so many centuries because it remained an island surrounded by marshes, therefore impossible to attack from the land. At some time before the 10th century, it would have been a Flemish-speaking fishing village on a sandy beach backed by pebbles and a creek, with a natural harbour at the west edge of the early medieval estuary of the River Aa; as the pebble and sand ridge extended eastward from Calais, the haven behind it developed into fen, as the estuary progressively filled with silt and peat.
Afterwards, canals were cut between Saint-Omer, the trading centre at the head of the estuary, three places to the west and east on the newly formed coast: Calais and Dunkirk. Calais was improved by the Count of Flanders in 997 and fortified by the Count of Boulogne in 1224; the first document mentioning the existence of this community is the town charter granted by Mathieu d'Alsace, Count of Boulogne, in 1181 to Gerard de Guelders. In 1189, Richard the Lionheart is documented to have landed at Calais on his journey to the Third Crusade. English wool trade interests and King Edward III's claims to be heir to the Kingdom of France led to the Battle of Crécy between England and France in 1346, followed by Edward's siege and capture of Calais in 1347. Angered, the English king demanded reprisals against the town's citizens for holding out for so long and ordered that the town's population be killed en masse, he agreed, however, to spare them, on condition that six of the principal citizens would come to him and barefooted and with ropes around their necks, give themselves up to death.
On their arrival he ordered their execution, but pardoned them when his queen, Philippa of Hainault, begged him to spare their lives. This event is commemorated in The Burghers of Calais, one of the most famous sculptures by Auguste Rodin, erected in the city in 1895. Though sparing the lives of the delegation members, King Edward drove out most of the French inhabitants, settled the town with English; the municipal charter of Calais granted by the Countess of Artois, was reconfirmed by Edward that year. In 1360 the Treaty of Brétigny assigned Guînes and Calais—collectively the "Pale of Calais"—to English rule in perpetuity, but this assignment was informally and only implemented. On 9 February 1363 the town was made a staple port, it had by 1372 become a parliamentary borough sending burgesses to the House of Commons of the Parliament of England. It remained part of the Diocese of Thérouanne from 1379; the town came to be called the "brightest jewel in the English crown" owing to its great importance as the gateway for the tin, lead and wool trades.
Its customs revenues amounted at times to a
Nicolas Paul Stéphane Sarközy de Nagy-Bocsa KOGF, GCB is a retired French politician who served as President of France and ex officio Co-Prince of Andorra from 16 May 2007 until 15 May 2012. Born in Paris, he is of 1/4 Greek Jewish and 1/4 French Catholic origin. Mayor of Neuilly-sur-Seine from 1983 to 2002, he was Minister of the Budget under Prime Minister Édouard Balladur during François Mitterrand's second term. During Jacques Chirac's second presidential term he served as Minister of the Interior and as Minister of Finances, he was the leader of the Union for a Popular Movement party from 2004 to 2007. He won the French presidential election, 2007 by a 53.1% to 46.9% margin to Socialist Ségolène Royal. During his term, he faced the Arab Spring, he initiated the reform of the pension reform. He married Italian-French singer-songwriter Carla Bruni in 2008 at the Élysée Palace in Paris. In the 2012 election, François Hollande, candidate of the Socialist Party, defeated Sarkozy by a 3.2% margin.
After leaving the presidential office, Sarkozy vowed to retire from public life before coming back in 2014, being subsequently reelected as UMP leader. Being defeated at the Republican presidential primary in 2016, he retired from public life, he is charged with corruption by French prosecutors in two cases, notably concerning the alleged Libyan interference in the 2007 French elections. Sarkozy was born in Paris, is the son of Pál István Ernő Sárközy de Nagy-Bócsa, a Protestant Hungarian aristocrat, Andrée Jeanne "Dadu" Mallah, whose Greek Jewish father converted to Catholicism to marry Sarkozy's French Catholic maternal grandmother, they were married in the Saint-François-de-Sales church, 17th arrondissement of Paris, on 8 February 1950, divorced in 1959. During Sarkozy's childhood, his father became wealthy; the family lived in a mansion owned by Sarkozy's maternal grandfather, Benedict Mallah, in the 17th Arrondissement of Paris. The family moved to Neuilly-sur-Seine, one of the wealthiest communes of the Île-de-France région west of Paris.
According to Sarkozy, his staunchly Gaullist grandfather was more of an influence on him than his father, whom he saw. Sarkozy was raised Catholic. Sarkozy said that being abandoned by his father shaped much of who he is today, he has said that, in his early years, he felt inferior in relation to his wealthier and taller classmates. "What made me who I am now is the sum of all the humiliations suffered during childhood", he said later. Sarkozy was enrolled in the Lycée Chaptal, a well regarded public middle and high school in Paris' 8th arrondissement, where he failed his sixième, his family sent him to the Cours Saint-Louis de Monceau, a private Catholic school in the 17th arrondissement, where he was a mediocre student, but where he nonetheless obtained his baccalauréat in 1973. Sarkozy enrolled at the Université Paris X Nanterre, where he graduated with an M. A. in private law and with a D. E. A. degree in business law. Paris X Nanterre had been the starting place for the May'68 student movement and was still a stronghold of leftist students.
Described as a quiet student, Sarkozy soon joined the right-wing student organization, in which he was active. He completed his military service as a part-time Air Force cleaner. After graduating from university, Sarkozy entered Sciences Po, where he studied between 1979 and 1981, but failed to graduate due to an insufficient command of the English language. After passing the bar, Sarkozy became a lawyer specializing in business and family law and was one of Silvio Berlusconi's French lawyers. Sarkozy married his first wife, Marie-Dominique Culioli, on 23 September 1982, they had two sons, now a hip-hop producer, Jean now a local politician in the city of Neuilly-sur-Seine where Sarkozy started his own political career. Sarkozy's best man was the prominent right-wing politician Charles Pasqua to become a political opponent. Sarkozy divorced Culioli in 1996; as mayor of Neuilly-sur-Seine, Sarkozy met former fashion model and public relations executive Cécilia Ciganer-Albéniz, when he officiated at her wedding to television host Jacques Martin.
In 1988, she left her husband for Sarkozy, divorced one year later. She and Sarkozy married with witnesses Martin Bouygues and Bernard Arnault, they have one son, born 23 April 1997. Between 2002 and 2005, the couple appeared together on public occasions, with Cécilia Sarkozy acting as the chief aide for her husband. On 25 May 2005, the Swiss newspaper Le Matin revealed that she had left Sarkozy for French-Moroccan national Richard Attias, head of Publicis in New York. There were other accusations of a private nature in Le Matin. In the meantime, he was said to have had an affair with a journalist of Anne Fulda. Sarkozy and Cécilia divorced on 15 October 2007, soon after his election as president. Less than a mont