In Chartres, the oldest stained glass workshop in France is selected for the Heritage Lotto.

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Founded in 1863 by Nicolas Lorin and located near Chartres Cathedral, the iconic Ateliers Lorin is one of 18 iconic locations selected by the Heritage Foundation for the 2023 Heritage Lottery. The list has been published March 16, Minister of Culture of Rome Abdul Malak. In addition, this is the only place chosen in the Center-Val-de-Loire region.

“This will change a lot!” says Elodie Valli, master glass blower and manager, enthusiastically, still flustered. I have been working in the studio for 19 years. 7 years ago, I bought the company after it went into liquidation, and the city bought the buildings. The activity is now fully commemorated with restorations, heritage preservation and creations throughout France and abroad. But the 2000 m² workshop is in a very bad condition! »

Ateliers Lorin, based in Chartres since 1863, is in need of a major overhaul. Their selection by the Heritage Mission will give the municipality financial support.

When they ceased operations in 2017, the city of Chartres acquired the workshops and their archives to ensure their sustainability. Initial rescue and restoration work has already been carried out, in particular to protect the site from water. “This year we are investing 200,000 euros in the restoration of one gate and the boundary wall,” adds Isabelle Vincent, deputy director of culture and heritage.

“Unique know-how”

“The complete reconstruction of the facility is estimated at 5 million euros. Thus, this announcement is very good news!, welcomes the elected official. In addition, Dassault Histoire & Patrimoine, patron of the Heritage Foundation, has announced its €180,000 support for the project. This assistance will ease the schedule of work in the working order and plan the reconstruction of the facility in the coming years. Thus, the municipality undertakes a large-scale restoration work, which includes the development of the museum part, the renovation of old ovens, the exhibition tower and equipment that is still in place.

L'Atelier Lorin in Chartres (Eure-et-Loire) was founded in 1873.  Since then, the activity has never stopped.  LP/Paul Guibal
L’Atelier Lorin in Chartres (Eure-et-Loire) was founded in 1873. Since then, the activity has never stopped. LP/Paul Guibal

Elodie Valli clarifies that some parts of the premises are not occupied because they are in danger of collapse: “This workshop is one of the last in France, it must be saved! It has over 6,000 links to websites, a significant heritage and is a guarantee of unique know-how! »

Les Ateliers Lorin has 6 employees, including 5 master glassblowers. “It’s nice to see that things are finally moving forward. This is a recognition of our work and the value of the place. » 18 iconic objects were selected according to 4 criteria: heritage and cultural interest, state of danger, maturity of the project, its impact on the territory and the development project.

Led by Stéphane Berne since 2018, Legacy Mission offers millions of players the opportunity to participate in La Française des jeux scratch games every year. The donation amount for each site will be announced in the fall during the next European Heritage Days.

“We urgently need to restore the workshops. I don’t plan to leave such a place!” Elodie Valli is touched. We store materials and tools there that are no longer manufactured. I fought to save him, I don’t plan on going anywhere. We are all soaked in the history and magic of this place! »

Source: Le Parisien

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