The Church of St Ambrose from the 13th century is a beautiful single-nave church with Romanesque-Gothic characteristics. It is located near the Upper City Gate where once the Benedictine Monastery of St Ambrose stood, whose original construction was mentioned as early as 941. The church got its present-day look when it was renovated in 1992.
The front side of the Church has characteristics of Romanesque architecture with a single entrance portal. Above the portal there is an opening in the form of a cross and above it a narrow Romanesque window.The single-nave area was vaulted by a semi-cylindrical ceiling of tufa (a variety of limestone), and from the interior side it is reinforced by two belts. The remains in its foundation bear witness that the church had a semi-circular apse. The present-day rectangular apse 5 x 4 metres in size was built later. In the 15th century the Church of St Ambrose was renovated and the church area widened. It obtained its present-day form by being renovated again in 1992. The church is used for celebrating the Mass, and because it is very acoustic, also for occasional concerts.References:
Château de Falaise is best known as a castle, where William the Conqueror, the son of Duke Robert of Normandy, was born in about 1028. William went on to conquer England and become king and possession of the castle descended through his heirs until the 13th century when it was captured by King Philip II of France. Possession of the castle changed hands several times during the Hundred Years' War. The castle was deserted during the 17th century. Since 1840 it has been protected as a monument historique.
The castle (12th–13th century), which overlooks the town from a high crag, was formerly the seat of the Dukes of Normandy. The construction was started on the site of an earlier castle in 1123 by Henry I of England, with the 'large keep' (grand donjon). Later was added the 'small keep' (petit donjon). The tower built in the first quarter of the 12th century contained a hall, chapel, and a room for the lord, but no small rooms for a complicated household arrangement; in this way, it was similar to towers at Corfe, Norwich, and Portchester, all in England. In 1202 Arthur I, Duke of Brittany was King John of England's nephew, was imprisoned in Falaise castle's keep. According to contemporaneous chronicler Ralph of Coggeshall, John ordered two of his servants to mutilate the duke. Hugh de Burgh was in charge of guarding Arthur and refused to let him be mutilated, but to demoralise Arthur's supporters was to announce his death. The circumstances of Arthur's death are unclear, though he probably died in 1203.
In about 1207, after having conquered Normandy, Philip II Augustus ordered the building of a new cylindrical keep. It was later named the Talbot Tower (Tour Talbot) after the English commander responsible for its repair during the Hundred Years' War. It is a tall round tower, similar design to the towers built at Gisors and the medieval Louvre.Possession of the castle changed hands several times during the Hundred Years' War. The castle was deserted during the 17th century. Since 1840, Château de Falaise has been recognised as a monument historique by the French Ministry of Culture.
A programme of restoration was carried out between 1870 and 1874. The castle suffered due to bombardment during the Second World War in the battle for the Falaise pocket in 1944, but the three keeps were unscathed.