Charles Guyard (in Carnac) / Photo credit: RONAN HOUSSIN / HANS LUCAS / HANS LUCAS VIA AFP 20:20 pm, June 07, 2023

The city of Carnac in Morbihan could soon host a store of the brand Monsieur Bricolage. But to prepare the site, about forty menhirs, which make the reputation of the Breton city, were destroyed, the municipality having issued the building permit.

Mr. Bricolage may make some enemies in Carnac. Because its establishment in the town was to the detriment of about forty menhirs erected on the famous archaeological site of this city of Morbihan. A ballet of backhoes and dump trucks were responsible for the destruction of these stones in order to launch the construction of a brand new store for which the town hall had given its approval. In Brittany, the controversy swells while the establishment must welcome its first customers in a few months.

For Christian Obeltz, researcher at the CNRS and passionate about archaeology, this construction is a "real scandal". Because before being evacuated, this forty menhirs dotted this plot for nearly eight millennia. "They were small menhirs. But precisely! They were all the more valuable because the smallest are often the oldest. The law has been violated. Any destruction of archaeological sites is strictly prohibited," he said.

"Everything has been scrupulously respected"

The area in question was precisely part of a set of megalithic sites identified in Carnac to enter the UNESCO World Heritage Site. A file carried by the mayor, Olivier Lepick, who has nevertheless granted the much criticized building permit.


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But the procedure was carried out in the rules, assures the interested party to Europe 1. "Everything has been scrupulously respected. But frankly, in Carnac, as soon as you dig, you come across Neolithic hearths. And in 99% of cases, archaeologists do not go because it has no value. If there had been a non-respect of the rules, the DRAC (regional directorate of cultural affairs) would have fallen on us with short arms," he said. The institution in question has not yet reacted.