NSS and Libre Pensée to join in commemoration of French secular martyr

Monday 8 March 2010

On 4 July 2010, the NSS will be joining the French organisation Libre Pensée to commemorate the death of the Chevalier de la Barre in Abbeville.

In 1776 the nineteen year old was tortured and executed for refusing to raise his hat or kneel down when a religious procession passed by as well as singing an ’impious’ song and reading irreligious books – including the work of Voltaire. During the fight for separation of Church and State in France, the Chevalier became a figurehead and every year, a rally has taken place on the day of his death.

The NSS has been invited by our sister organisation Libre Pensée to join this year’s commemoration and banquet. You will be very welcome to go to Abbeville, which is around an hour from Calais by car, but it will involve making your own way to the event.

Abbeville is close to Le Touquet and the delightful Baie de Somme and there are wonderful tourism opportunities in the area. However, as the French school holidays will have just started, it might be useful to book any accommodation well in advance. If you need some suggestions, or more information, please write to enquiries@secularism.org.uk .