St. Andrew's Church is a neo-Gothic parish church in central Bayonne. The church was designed by architects Hippolyte Durand and Hippolyte Guichenné and built in the neo-Gothic style between 1856 and 1869, under Napoléon III's reign. It was built on the site of a former Jansenist high school. Its construction was mainly funded by a bequest from banker Jacques Taurin de Lormand, who died in 1847. The town council allocated additional money for ending the works and purchasing furniture. The church was consecrated on March 7, 1862. The Capuchins' Church neighboring St Andrew's was demolished.
On December 13, 1895, the vault partly collapsed on the organ lofts because the ground was swampy. The 74-meter-high spires, which were too heavy, were demolished in 1901 and replaced by the two current belfry towers in 1903.
In the shape of a Latin cross, the church's design was inspired from the 13th-century Gothic churches with two front towers and an imposing rosette over the doors. It has three ribbed naves.
The inside of the church features a painting by Léon Bonnat (1833-1922) of Bayonne, which represents the Assumption of Mary. Another painting by Joseph Pascau (1875-1944) of Bayonne shows the Holy Family. The pipe organ was donated by Napoléon III in 1862 and inaugurated on April 9, 1836.References:
Built around AD 90 to entertain the legionaries stationed at the fort of Caerleon (Isca), the impressive amphitheatre was the Roman equivalent of today’s multiplex cinema. Wooden benches provided seating for up to 6,000 spectators, who would gather to watch bloodthirsty displays featuring gladiatorial combat and exotic wild animals.
Long after the Romans left, the amphitheatre took on a new life in Arthurian legend. Geoffrey of Monmouth, the somewhat imaginative 12th-century scholar, wrote in his History of the Kings of Britain that Arthur was crowned in Caerleon and that the ruined amphitheatre was actually the remains of King Arthur’s Round Table.
Today it is the most complete Roman amphitheatre in Britain.