Rue du Carreau, 49500 Segré-en-Anjou Bleu.
Guided Tours: All year daily 10-19.
Centrale 7: All year Mon-Fri 9-18.
free, donations welcome.
Guided tour: Adults EUR 5, Children EUR 5.
|Light:||Incandescent Electric Light System|
|Guided tours:||self guided|
Association des Mines de Fer de l’Anjou, 26 Avenue des Acacias, 49500 Segré, Tel: +33-641-40-14-48.
Guided tours, Tel: +33-680-96-34-41. E-mail:
Centrale 7, Rue du Carreau de Bois II, Nyoiseau 49500, Segré-en-Anjou Bleu, Tel: +33-241-61-30-34. E-mail: E-mail:
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|1967||Les Mines de Fer bought by the financial group Groupe Denain-Anzin Nord-Est.|
|1973||the first oil shock starts the decline of the Segré Iron Mines.|
|31-JUL-1985||La Société des Mines de Fer de Segré closed.|
|2003||painter Florent Maussion moves into the first artist's studio in the Centrale 2 building.|
|2006||artist center established in the former mine buildings.|
|2014||Association des Mines de Fer de l’Anjou founded.|
|SEP-2018||Parcours Découverte «Sur les pas des Mineurs de Fer» (Discovery Course “In the footsteps of the Iron Miners”) inaugurated.|
The slate of this area is interbedded with iron bearing ores, so in the area around Noyant-la-Gravoyère both slate and iron mines existed. However, the iron was not of good quality and the slate mines were always more profitable.
Mines de Fer d'Anjou (Iron Mines of Anjou) is the topic and the name of the non-profit association. The site is one of those iron mines and called Carreau de la Mine du Bois II (Forrest Mine II). Actually, the site along the Rue du Carreau has numerous mines, and they did not have separate names, they were simply numbered. They are sometimes called Mines de Fer de Segré-en-Anjou Bleu (Iron Mines of Segré-en-Anjou Bleu).
Obviously, the site, as an abandoned mine, has numerous mining relevant remains. The most spectacular is the largest and best preserved headframe in France. To connect all the buildings that were necessary for the operation of the mine, a mining heritage interpretation trail was created. The mining heritage trail is outdoors and thus accessible all year round without restriction. There are numerous educational signs (only in French) which explain the history of the site. Guided tours of the mining heritage interpretation trail are also offered, for groups of at least 10 persons and after reservation.
This trail is also called exposition de plein air (open air museum), which we found quite exceptional. In France the term ecomusee was coined in the 1970s, which actually means the same, but is often misunderstood by foreigners. The eco has nothing to do with "ecological" or "nature protection" topics, it actually means that all aspects including the social life of the inhabitants are presented in the museum.
The trail is called Parcours Découverte «Sur les pas des Mineurs de Fer» (Discovery Course “In the footsteps of the Iron Miners”). It was inaugurated in September 2018. While it is actually accessible without restrictions, they give open hours 10 to 19. This is the time frame in which guided tours are available. And it's also a good idea to visit the site during daylight hours.
The mine was once 400 m deep and had several hundred kilometers of passages. When it was closed in 1985, the pumps were turned off and mines filled with groundwater to the top of the wells. In 1988, the mine was completely submerged. As a result there is no possibility fo an underground tour, as no air-filled passage remains.
Centrale 7 is the name of the building on the southern side of the road, there were actually numerous "centrales", and they were numbered. The mine was closed and abandoned, and the former economic backbone became a wasteland. In 2006 the building was transformed into a series of ateliers and an exhibition space which hosts three exhibitions per year, in Spring, Summer, and Autumn. Today there are 15 workshops including 10 occupied by sculptors, ceramists, painters, photographers, and landscape architects. It was initially intended to manage workshop spaces for creation, but the association has gradually extended its services to collaboration organize exhibitions, communication, and sharing of resources.