BAVAY: Our historian, François Duriez, is gone – L’Observateur

It is with great sadness that we learned of the death of François Duriez on Saturday June 11. Passionate and fascinating, it was a real pleasure to talk with this man of history.

François Duriez has been an invested elected official for many terms. But you may also know him as president of the friends of the museum, as your former history teacher, as your luxury guide during heritage days, or as a master companion of Beaujolais.

During our interviews for the newspaper, François Duriez could talk to us about history for hours. When it was launched, passion took over! He also knew how to convey his passion for his city to us when we invited him to work on our annual heritage pages. What we appreciated about him was also the little anecdote, the little extra that makes a simple historical visit a frankly pleasant moment.

Francois Duriez.

The Fascinating Historian

Stories around Queen Brunehaut, he had told us tons! Our queen who sits on her column since 1872 had been accused of witchcraft by one of her competitors. His execution had struck people very much. It was François Duriez who pointed out to us that Queen Brunehaut only had one hand. It had been repaired, but it had flown away again. You will check!

And our traveler kiosk in the municipal park, do you remember its route?


The Heritage Defender

A lover of heritage, François Duriez was also the initiator of the departmentalization of the museum. He liked to defend the heritage of the city by highlighting, for example, the smallest belfry in the Region. He had even gone so far as to ask the officials of the Region why the belfry of Bavay did not appear in the belfry guide. ” It’s too small ” he had been answered. François Duriez also worked on the signage project around the city’s treasures, implemented by the Municipality in its Heritage commission. Unbeatable on the Cardo, he was also a fervent defender of the coverage of the Ancient Forum. However, François Duriez was unable to see her protect the remains.

François Duriez died on Saturday June 11, 2022.
François Duriez died on Saturday June 11, 2022.

Last interview

To pay tribute to him, we offer you a nice interview he gave us many years ago. It may sound different today.

“I have always loved history. I was born in 1947. My mother lived in Ghyvelde, a small seaside village in Flanders. When I was little, I went to play in the forts of the Atlantic Wall, for example.


In 1974, I also created a mail-order bookstore selling old and rare books that I bought at public sales or from large estates.”

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When asked the extent of his collection of rare books, he replied that he had always respected the advice of a former bookseller.

“If you keep the beautiful pieces for yourself, your customers will never have anything!”.

And casually, this maxim has always been valid for all his knowledge that he liked to share! Goodbye, our historian.


Find the rest of our tribute article in La Sambre, on sale this Friday at your newsagent.

We would like to say thanks to the author of this short article for this amazing material

BAVAY: Our historian, François Duriez, is gone – L’Observateur

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