HISTORICAL ROUTE THROUGH THE BASTIDE NEUVE*
LA RUE ADOUR*ou GRAND RUE*
It was built in 1837 to the west of the old town to put a stop to the north-south extension of the town along the rue des Pyrénées*. It became the urban part of the new road to Préchac*and from there the town expanded in the 1840s with the building of a new area around the church and the opening of the Grand Rue. This new suburb follows the geometrical pattern of the medieval bastide with its square with arches and is regarded as the new bastide, adjacent to the old urban centre.
Linking the old square (where the town hall stands) to the new one (where the church stands) the Grand Rue became one of the busiest streets in mid-19th century, with its many shops. From 1860 to 1980 it was « la rue des boutiques » (the shopping street) in the market town. Unfortunately it is no longer so nowadays due to the changes in households' consumption habits triggered by the use of cars and the building of supermarkets.
However one can still see some remains of its past life. Number 12 reveals an imposing neoclassical building which is the former « Central Cinéma ». It used to offer various forms of entertainment: films of course, plays, variety shows, dances. Built in 1920 by the Lespielles, who ran a pastry shop in the town, it is one of the oldest cinemas in Gers*. Today, it has been beautifully renovated and become a cultural centre for our little town and its surroundings.
Number 20 offers a rare and beautiful metal shutter of a butcher's shop (boucherie Cazenave) founded in 1880. On the same side of the street, nearer the square, there is the Café de la Ligne Droite (café of the straight road), formerly Café Français or Café Cahuzac where right wing voters (or culs blancs= white arses )met from the Belle Epoque (turn of the 20th century) until the 1950s. Republican voters (or culs rouges= red arses) had their own society which met in the rival Café de l'Union situated under the arches of the present town hall.
Bastide : walled town in the South West of France.
Adour : one of the rivers of the area
Grand Rue : main street.
Pyrénées : range of mountains seperating France and Spain
Préchac : a village to the south west of Plaisance.
Gers : a river whic has given its name to the « département » where Plaisance is located.