Communes of France
The commune is a level of administrative division in the French Republic. French communes are analogous to civil townships and incorporated municipalities in the United States and Canada, Gemeinden in Germany, comuni in Italy or ayuntamiento in Spain; the United Kingdom has no exact equivalent, as communes resemble districts in urban areas, but are closer to parishes in rural areas where districts are much larger. Communes are based on historical geographic communities or villages and are vested with significant powers to manage the populations and land of the geographic area covered; the communes are the fourth-level administrative divisions of France. Communes vary in size and area, from large sprawling cities with millions of inhabitants like Paris, to small hamlets with only a handful of inhabitants. Communes are based on pre-existing villages and facilitate local governance. All communes have names, but not all named geographic areas or groups of people residing together are communes, the difference residing in the lack of administrative powers.
Except for the municipal arrondissements of its largest cities, the communes are the lowest level of administrative division in France and are governed by elected officials with extensive autonomous powers to implement national policy. A commune is city, or other municipality. "Commune" in English has a historical bias, implies an association with socialist political movements or philosophies, collectivist lifestyles, or particular history. There is nothing intrinsically different between commune in French; the French word commune appeared in the 12th century, from Medieval Latin communia, for a large gathering of people sharing a common life. As of January 2015, there were 36,681 communes in France, 36,552 of them in metropolitan France and 129 of them overseas; this is a higher total than that of any other European country, because French communes still reflect the division of France into villages or parishes at the time of the French Revolution. The whole territory of the French Republic is divided into communes.
This is unlike some other countries, such as the United States, where unincorporated areas directly governed by a county or a higher authority can be found. There are only a few exceptions: COM of Saint-Martin, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe région. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Martin became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. COM of Wallis and Futuna, which still is divided according to the three traditional chiefdoms. COM of Saint Barthélemy, it was a commune inside the Guadeloupe region. The commune structure was abolished when Saint-Barthélemy became an overseas collectivity on 22 February 2007. Furthermore, two regions without permanent habitation have no communes: TOM of the French Southern and Antarctic Lands Clipperton Island in the Pacific Ocean In metropolitan France, the average area of a commune in 2004 was 14.88 square kilometres. The median area of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was smaller, at 10.73 square kilometres. The median area is a better measure of the area of a typical French commune.
This median area is smaller than that of most European countries. In Italy, the median area of communes is 22 km2. Switzerland and the Länder of Rhineland-Palatinate, Schleswig-Holstein, Thuringia in Germany were the only places in Europe where the communes had a smaller median area than in France; the communes of France's overseas départements such as Réunion and French Guiana are large by French standards. They group into the same commune several villages or towns with sizeable distances among them. In Réunion, demographic expansion and sprawling urbanization have resulted in the administrative splitting of some communes; the median population of metropolitan France's communes at the 1999 census was 380 inhabitants. Again this is a small number, here France stands apart in Europe, with the lowest communes' median population of all the European countries; this small median population of French communes can be compared with Italy, where the median population of communes in 2001 was 2,343 inhabitants, Belgium, or Spain.
The median population given here should not hide the fact that there are pronounced differences in size between French communes. As mentioned in the introduction, a commune can be a city of 2 million inhabitants such as Paris, a town of 10,000 inhabitants, or just a hamlet of 10 inhabitants. What the median population tells us is that the vast majority of the French communes only have a few hundred inhabitants. In metropolitan France just over 50 percent of the 36,683 communes have fewer than 500 inhabitants a
Hiking is the preferred term, in Canada and the United States, for a long, vigorous walk on trails, in the countryside, while the word walking is used for shorter urban walks. On the other hand, in the United Kingdom, the Republic of Ireland, the word "walking" is acceptable to describe all forms of walking, whether it is a walk in the park or backpacking in the Alps; the word hiking is often used in the UK, along with rambling and fell walking. The term bushwalking is endemic to Australia, having been adopted by the Sydney Bush Walkers club in 1927. In New Zealand a long, vigorous walk or hike is called tramping, it is a popular activity with numerous hiking organizations worldwide, studies suggest that all forms of walking have health benefits. In the United States, the Republic of Ireland, United Kingdom, hiking means walking outdoors on a trail, or off trail, for recreational purposes. A day hike refers to a hike. However, in the United Kingdom, the word walking is used, as well as rambling, while walking in mountainous areas is called hillwalking.
In Northern England, Including the Lake District and Yorkshire Dales, fellwalking describes hill or mountain walks, as fell is the common word for both features there. Hiking is sometimes referred to as such; this refers to difficult walking through dense forest, undergrowth, or bushes, where forward progress requires pushing vegetation aside. In extreme cases of bushwhacking, where the vegetation is so dense that human passage is impeded, a machete is used to clear a pathway; the Australian term bushwalking refers to both on and off-trail hiking. Common terms for hiking used by New Zealanders are walking or bushwalking. Trekking is the preferred word used to describe multi-day hiking in the mountainous regions of India, Nepal, North America, South America and the highlands of East Africa. Hiking a long-distance trail from end-to-end is referred to as trekking and as thru-hiking in some places. In North America, multi-day hikes with camping, are referred to as backpacking; the idea of taking a walk in the countryside for pleasure developed in the 18th century, arose because of changing attitudes to the landscape and nature associated with the Romantic movement.
In earlier times walking indicated poverty and was associated with vagrancy. Thomas West, an English priest, popularized the idea of walking for pleasure in his guide to the Lake District of 1778. In the introduction he wrote that he aimed to encourage the taste of visiting the lakes by furnishing the traveller with a Guide. To this end he included various'stations' or viewpoints around the lakes, from which tourists would be encouraged to enjoy the views in terms of their aesthetic qualities. Published in 1778 the book was a major success. Another famous early exponent of walking for pleasure, was the English poet William Wordsworth. In 1790 he embarked on an extended tour of France and Germany, a journey subsequently recorded in his long autobiographical poem The Prelude, his famous poem Tintern Abbey was inspired by a visit to the Wye Valley made during a walking tour of Wales in 1798 with his sister Dorothy Wordsworth. Wordsworth's friend Coleridge was another keen walker and in the autumn of 1799, he and Wordsworth undertook a three weeks tour of the Lake District.
John Keats, who belonged to the next generation of Romantic poets began, in June 1818, a walking tour of Scotland and the Lake District with his friend Charles Armitage Brown. More and more people undertook walking tours through the 19th century, of which the most famous is Robert Louis Stevenson's journey through the Cévennes in France with a donkey, recorded in his Travels with a Donkey. Stevenson published in 1876 his famous essay "Walking Tours"; the subgenre of travel writing produced many classics in the subsequent 20th century. An early American example of a book that describes an extended walking tour is naturalist John Muir's A Thousand Mile Walk to the Gulf, a posthumous published account of a long botanizing walk, undertaken in 1867. Due to industrialisation in England, people began to migrate to the cities where living standards were cramped and unsanitary, they would escape the confines of the city by rambling about in the countryside. However, the land in England around the urban areas of Manchester and Sheffield, was owned and trespass was illegal.
Rambling clubs soon sprang up in the north and began politically campaigning for the legal'right to roam'. One of the first such clubs, was'Sunday Tramps' founded by Leslie White in 1879; the first national grouping, the Federation of Rambling Clubs, was formed in London in 1905 and was patronized by the peerage. Access to Mountains bills, that would have legislated the public's'right to roam' across some private land, were periodically presented to Parliament from 1884 to 1932 without success. In 1932, the Rambler’s Right Movement organized a mass trespass on Kinder Scout in Derbyshire. Despite attempts on the part of the police to prevent the trespass from going ahead it was achieved due to massive publicity; however the Mountain Access Bill, passed in 1939 was opposed by many walkers' organizations, including The Ramblers, who felt that it did not
Ayguatébia-Talau is a commune in the Pyrénées-Orientales department in southern France. Ayguatébia-Talau is located in the canton of Les Pyrénées catalanes and in the arrondissement of Prades. Attested formsThe name of Ayguatébia appears in 958 as Aqua tebeda followed in 959 by Aquatepida. Villa Aque tepida is used during the 11th century and Aiguetevia is found in 1392. From the 17th century and on, the common forms are Ayguatebia; the modern spelling in Catalan is Aiguatèbia, but the traditional spelling, Ayguatèbia, should be preferred. The name of Talau appears in 876 as Talacho. Talazo and Talaxo are used during the 10th century. Talau is used since. EtymologyThe name of Ayguatébia comes from the Latin aqua tebeda, meaning lukewarm water, in relation with warm springs found in Ayguatébia; the name of Talau comes from a pre-Latin radical, Tal or Tala, meaning a small plateau found above a cliff or a hill, which corresponds to the situation of the village of Talau, located above the valley of the Cabrils river.
Ayguatébia-Talau is a town created on January 1983 by uniting the towns of Ayguatébia and Talau. Saint-Felix and Saint-Armengol church in Ayguatébia Saint-Stephen church in Talau Saint-Michael of the Plans church Saint Ermengol was born in Ayguatébia. Communes of the Pyrénées-Orientales department IGN
Les Angles, Pyrénées-Orientales
Les Angles is a commune in the Pyrénées-Orientales department in southern France. Legend has it that at the beginning of the XIV century, the Black Death wiped out the entire population of the former village of Vallsera. Only two sisters survived, they are believed to have donated all of the land to the commune of Les Angles. Les Angles is located in the arrondissement of Prades. Communes of the Pyrénées-Orientales department INSEE Activities in Les Angles Official site
Banyuls-sur-Mer is a commune in the Pyrénées-Orientales department in southern France. It was first settled by Greeks starting in 400 BCE. Banyuls-sur-Mer is located in the arrondissement of Céret. Banyuls-sur-Mer is neighbored by Cerbère, Port-Vendres, Argelès-sur-Mer and Collioure on its French borders, by Espolla, Rabós, Colera and Portbou on its Spanish borders; the foothills of Pyrenees, the Monts Albères, run into the Mediterranean Sea in Banyuls-sur-Mer, creating a steep cliff line. Banyuls-sur-Mer was first mentioned in 981 as Balneola. In 1074, the town started being called Bannils de Maritimo in order to distinguish it from Banyuls-dels-Aspres, which lies 20 km away. In 1197, the town was mentioned as Banullis de Maredine and in 1674. In Catalan, it has been called Banyuls de la Marenda since the 19th century; the name Banyuls indicates the presence of a pond. In fact, a pond did exist in Banyuls-sur-Mer until the creek Vallauria was drained in 1872; the term Marenda in Catalan or sur Mer in French indicates the proximity to the coast.
Banyuls-sur-Mer is twinned with a small town called Settle, in North Yorkshire, United Kingdom and with the town of Kralupy nad Vltavou located in the Central Bohemian Region of the Czech Republic. Banyuls-sur-Mer is at the eastern end of the GR 10 long-distance footpath. Banyuls is a centre for scuba diving; the main dive site of the area is the marine reserve at Cap Rederis. Local dive schools offer excellent facilities. Sea kayaking is available here. For nearly two centuries, the smuggling of goods to and from Spain was a major activity in Banyuls-sur-Mer. Depending on the needs of the time, tobacco, sugar, rice and leather were smuggled through this city always with impunity. Otherwise the inhabitants lived from fishing and viticulture. Nowadays, tourism stemming from the wine industry plays a significant economic role in the town, notably for delicious and rare red dessert wines. Under the Collioure appellation, the town is a centre of quality dry reds, rosés and whites, with a number of producers of sweet wines.
George Orwell and his wife Eileen had a holiday in Banyuls-sur-Mer directly after leaving Spain in the throes of its civil war, in July 1937. Their holiday was not a success; as he noted, Orwell found the place'a bore and a disappointment'. It was chilly weather, a persistent wind blew off the sea, the water was dull and choppy.... Aristide Maillol, French sculptor and painter and died in Banyuls-sur-Mer. Maillol was much part of the turn of the century art scene, friends with Matisse, Picasso, Dali. A sculpture of Dina Vierny, aged 17, his last muse and member of the French Resistance, stands beneath the huge jacaranda tree behind the town hall. Emil Racovita, Romanian polar explorer, former co-director of the Arago laboratory. Jean de La Hire, writer born in Banyuls-sur-Mer. Marc Eyraud, died in Banyuls-sur-Mer. Communes of the Pyrénées-Orientales department INSEE commune file Official website
L'Albère is a commune in the Pyrénées-Orientales department in southern France. L'Albère is located in the arrondissement of Céret; the name of L'Albère is issued from the Albera Massif in which it is located. Although always plural in French concerning the mountain range, the name remains singular through the ages for the commune. On the contrary, in Catalan, the name has always been singular for the place. · Early settlements of population grew near the two primitive churches: Saint Martin named in 844 and Saint John, known since 1089. The hamlets of Saint Martin and Saint John both still exist nowadays, each with its church. In 1790, the commune of L'Albère is included into the canton of Argelès part of the Céret district, it is moved to the canton of Laroque in 1793 and back to the canton of Argelès in 1801, before being included in the canton of Céret in 1947. Following the French canton reorganisation which came into effect in March 2015, L'Albère is now part of the canton of Vallespir-Albères.
There is no school in L'Albère. The nearest is in Le Perthus. Patronal feast: 5 August. Communal feast: 2nd Sunday of August. There are no doctors in L'Albère; the nearest are in Le Perthus. L'Albère has several climbing sites. Balma de Na Cristiana: a large dolmen. Saint-John Church Saint-Martin Church Saint-Christopher chapel Communes of the Pyrénées-Orientales department INSEE commune file
Pyrénées-Orientales known as Northern Catalonia, is a department of Occitanie adjacent to the northern Spanish frontier and the Mediterranean Sea. It surrounds the tiny Spanish exclave of Llívia, thus has two distinct borders with Spain. Prior to the Treaty of the Pyrenees in 1659, most of the present department was part of the former Principality of Catalonia, within the Crown of Aragon, therefore part of the Kingdom of Spain, so the majority of it has been Catalan-speaking, it is still referred to as Northern Catalonia; the modern department was created early during the French Revolution on 9 February 1790 under the name of Roussillon the name of the pre-Revolutionary province of Roussillon to which it exactly corresponds, although the department includes Fenouillèdes, a small piece of territory, on the southern edge of Languedoc. The name therefore changed on February 1790 to Pyrénées-Orientales. Invaded by Spain in April 1793, the area was recaptured thirteen months during the War of the Roussillon.
During the nineteenth century, Pyrénées-Orientales proved one of the most republican departments in France. The intellectual and republican politician François Arago, during the early months of the short-lived Second Republic in 1848, was de facto Head of state, came from Estagel in the east of the department; the département is managed by the General Council of the Pyrénées-Orientales in Perpignan. The Pyrénées-Orientales is part of the region of Occitanie; the General Council of the Pyrénées-Orientales is more and more involved with the European Union to create with the Generalitat of Catalonia, Andorra, a Eurodistrict. Pyrénées-Orientales has an area of 4,115 km². and a population of 422,000, of whom just over a quarter live in the capital, Perpignan. Other towns above 10,000 inhabitants include Canet-en-Roussillon, Saint-Estève, Saint-Cyprien and Argelès-sur-Mer, they are followed in decreasing order by Cabestany, Saint-Laurent-de-la-Salanque, Rivesaltes, Céret, Pia, Bompas, Le Soler and Toulouges, each of 6-10,000 inhabitants.
Pyrénées-Orientales consists of three river valleys in the Pyrenees mountain range –from north to south, those of the Agly, Têt and Tech – and the eastern Plain of Roussillon into which they converge. Most of the population and agricultural production are concentrated in the plain, with only 30% of the area. There is one water reservoir at Lac de Matemale. There is a lake, Casteilla; the upper Têt valley comprises the departments westernmost third, with just over a tenth of the total population. To the south-east, the Tech valley and the Côte Vermeille contain nearly 100,000 inhabitants; the Agly basin in the north-east has much in common with neighboring areas of Aude. Llívia is a town of Cerdanya, province of Girona, Spain, that forms a Spanish exclave surrounded by French territory. Pyrénées-Orientales is a tourist destination. French is spoken by all the population. Minority languages in the region are Catalan and Occitan, which between them are estimated to be spoken by 34% of the population and understood by an additional 21%.
On 10 December 2007, the General Council of the Pyrénées-Orientales recognized Catalan as a regional language of the department, though French is still the only official language in France, according to the Constitution. The area is traditionally divided into comarques, of which five are Catalan-speaking and one is Occitan-speaking; the five Catalan-speaking comarques were part of the Kingdom of Majorca. The cuisine of Pyrénées-Orientales draws from the historical Catalan presence in the area, so dishes like paella, cargols à la llauna and calcots are prevalent in the restaurants at important dates such as the various saints' feast days and cultural festivals; the area is famous for its wine with the predominantly red grape varieties grown all over the department, regional specialities such as muscat de Rivesaltes and Banyuls are sold everywhere in the department. The geography of the area leads to a distinct divide in the cuisine of P-O; the mountainous area to the south has dishes using ingredients that grow there, products such as olives and goat's cheese.
Fish are very popular in the region with Collioure being famous for its anchovies, although fishing has declined due to the overall reduction of the fish stock in the Mediterranean sea. Places of interest include: Banyuls-sur-Mer, famous for its Grenache-based Banyuls wine, birthplace of Aristide Maillol. Céret, considered to be one of the birthplaces of cubism, hosts several museums among which the Musée d'Art Moderne. Collioure, considered to be one of the famous places of fauvism. Força Réal, ruined mountaintop fortress. Prades, site of the Catalan Summer University. Prats de Mollo, important defensive castle of the 17th century facing south to the Pyrenees. Salses, important defensive castle of the 16th century, on the ancient frontier with Spain. Pyrénées-Orientales has two notable sports teams: Catalans Dragons. Intercommunalities of the Pyrénées-Orientales department Mann, Jane. Almost all you need to know about the Pyrénées-Orientales. Saint-Estève: Presses littéraires. ISBN 978-2-35073-368-5.
OCLC 667612113. Cárdenas, Fabricio. 66 petites histoires du Pays Catalan. Perpignan: Ultima Necat. ISBN 978-2-36771-006-8. OCL