Chausey is a Norman Archipel located in bay of the Mont Saint-Michel at 17 km at broad of Granville. It consists of a principal island, the Grande Island , approximately 1,5 km out of 0,5 km for its broadest dimensions, and of 365 small island S with low Marée against approximately 52 islands with high tide. The Large Island is not called like distinguishing it from the other islands because, in fact, Chausey indicates at the same time the archipelago and the Large Island, which is only inhabited. In spite of its reduced dimensions, this one shelters several tens of houses occupied especially in summer. The winter, only small ten Chausiais, (fishing S, guards of headlight…), maintain the life on the island.
Chausey a long time was the subject of the competitions between English and French. Contrary to the Anglo-Norman close islands, the archipelago is French since centuries. Site of piracy and smuggling, this labyrinthian universe was a long time a snuffed den of the navigators fraud the USSR. It was enough to engage in the Sound (the natural channel skirting the Large island), or to wet in the Passe Beauchamp to be with the shelter of the inquisitive eyes! According to the legend of the Forest of Scissy, a tide in 709 would have separated these islands, like the mount Dol and Tombelaine, of the dry land. In 1022, Richard II, duke of Normandy, fact gift of Chausey and baronnie of Saint-Par-on-Sea, with the monks of the Mount Saint-Michel, who build on the Large island a priory Benedictine, near of current Ferme.
The incredible granite lace which is this archipelago was exploited a long time: during eight centuries, it was useful, inter alia, to build the Abbaye of the Mount-Saint-Michel and to rebuild Saint-Malo, to draw up the quays of the ports of Dieppe and London, to pave the pavements of Paris. A long time also, one exploited there the Soude, drawn from the algae collected on the coasts and which was used with industry of the soap as Rouen.
Currently, the economic activity comes primarily from tourism but also from fishing: the very pure water, continuously brewed by currents violent one, allows the fishing of the Homard, the Bouquet, conger, the bar and the mule. The immense plate of the archipelago is also exploited for the breeding of the mould S and the Huître S, but this activity is not carried out by the fishermen of the island. Tourism is supported by the presence of three trade which are the Hotel of the Fort and the Islands, a restaurant and a grocer, like by the presence of lodgings in the old farm and in Port Marie.
The south-western point of the Large Island belongs to the town of Granville which rents some houses, within the framework of long beams, and thus remains owner of the ground. The north-eastern part of the Grande-Ile and the remainder of the archipelago are the property of SCI of Chausey, founded at the beginning of the 20th century; however, the passage is tolerated there by the owners. The archipelago depends administratively on Granville.
The typical boats of Chausey are the dory, a boat with oars or engine used by the fishermen, and the Canot chausiais, a small sailing boat used for the pleasure. These boats enter in competition at the time of the Regattas of Chausey which take place the every years in August, the first weekend of neap tide. The festivities last all the weekend, during which several regattas are organized, of dory, of boats chausiais as well as a regatta for the children. On the plain are held also plays in which children and adults take part.
The Marée S are strongest there of Europe (up to 14 meters of Marnage at the time of the tides of equinox).
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