Medieval Provins. Discover the strange machine that will be installed in the Place Saint-Quirias.

Volunteers of the association Les Bâtisseurs medievaux will be present in Provins with their cars on 25 and 26 June at the Medieval 2022 exhibition ©Les Bâtisseurs medievaux

You can not miss it. Place Saint-Quirias in front of the collegiate church Provins (Seine and Marne), its peak will reach 8 m in height. And its mysterious name never ceases to intrigue the public: squirrel cage!

On the occasion of 37are medieval who honor the “Builders” June 25 and 26, 2022Association medieval builders will install a strange machine in the upper city directly from the corridors of time!

It was a medieval crane, the most powerful construction machine of that time. It is called a squirrel cage because of its drum with a diameter of more than 3 m, resembling a hamster wheel. This creates a large leverage effect capable of lifting a 500 kg stone.

Pascal Waringot, technical adviser to the Association of Medieval Builders

During the weekend, visitors will be able to test the device, as well as take part in six other events for the general public, which will showcase various building crafts practiced in the Middle Ages: rope making, scaffolding, discovering the profession of project manager, stone cutting for adults and children , as well as various forestry works. Everything is under the control of 14 association volunteers who are ready to share their know-how.

Catering professionals

“Medieval builders have been around since 1990,” says Pascal Waringo. We are from Cordes-sur-Ciel (Tarn)and we are all professionals in the field of restoration of historical buildings and monuments. »

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The “squirrel cage” was the crane of the Middle Ages. With a system of wheels and levers, stone blocks weighing almost 500 kg could be lifted ©Les Bâtisseurs mediévaux

Bricklayers, carpenters, ropemen, bricklayers… So many professions and experience in abundance.

Since its inception, the association has also worked regularly with historians: the medievalist Régine Pernot (died 1998), the curator Alain Erland-Brandenburg (died 2020) or even Philippe Bernardi, director of research at the CNRS and expert on the medievalist in the world construction.

We will work like a real medieval construction site

Pascal Varingault, Medieval Builders

Therefore, several times a year they go on a journey to take part in historical reconstructions and talk about what their work once was. “The idea is to promote, educate, offer fun things to make our work attractive. We also participate in the filming of documentaries. We shot in front of Reims Cathedral, in Bayeux or even on Mont Saint-Michel to RMC discoveries. »

Video: now on Actu

For their second participation in the Médiévales de Provins, the Builders will be dressed as XIIIe century. The tools and equipment used will be the same as in the Middle Ages: “We will work like a real medieval construction site with a continuous daily workflow, working on machines, on scaffolding and on workbenches,” concludes Pascal Waringo. .

This Friday, a fun company will arrive in a medieval city with no less than five tons of equipment in their suitcases!

Medieval builders, June 25 and 26, 2022, Place Saint-Quirias in Provins. Free.

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