A town fortified in the Middle Ages
The first town fortified in the northern Poitou area to have three gateways: Porte Bourbon, Porte de Guyenne demolished in the 19th century, and Porte Saint Louis which no longer exists. It first belonged to Baron de Preuilly from the 10th to 15th century, then was owned by the Chastaigners until 1662 when it became the property of Izoré de Pleumartin. The population was 1,500 in the Middle Ages. The Creuse river has always been a border, now acting as a natural separation between the French departments of the Vienne and Indre et Loire and the Poitou-Charentes and Centre regions.
In the Middle Ages - a border between the French kingdom and the English kingdom of Richard the Lionheart
First there was the the defeat of the French navy in 1340, then Crécy in 1346, and finally, the crushing defeat of John the Good in Nouaillers Maupertuis, near Poitiers in 1356. The king was taken prisoner and the Poitou area was under English rule. On the dark night of the 1st of July 1369, La Roche-Posay's citadel was taken over by an armed troop commanded by Kerlouet. Charles V named him governer of the town and provided him with arms and gold to continue the battle. He repaired the fortifications, expanded the garrison (700 h) and bought artillery. It is now a fortified square facing the Berry and Touraine, and his troops fought the English furiously between the Vienne and Creuse. During the Second World War, the demarcation line vaguely followed the river, with La Roche-Posay falling in the free zone. Barricades could be seen on the Châtellerault and Lésigny roads.
Guided tours all year round with the Tourist Information Office
La Roche-Posay Tourist Information Centre has a guide available to take you on discovery tours to learn more about the town's medieval history.
Every third Wednesday at 2.30pm
For groups by appointment
For more information and bookings contact the Tourist Information Centre - +33 (0)5 49 19 13 00