Historic buildings

The Viaduct

The foundation stone of this bridge was laid on 21st November 1855. One year later, the first locomotive steamed across the viaduct, which was officially opened on 18th April 1857. An engineer by the name of Decomble designed the bridge, which has a volume of 60,000 cu. metres. An average of 2,500 workers were employed on its construction, day and night. The viaduct is 600 metres long and has 50 arches up to a height of 50 metres. The stone viaduct is one of the most remarkable bridges built in the second half of the 19th century in Europe, or perhaps in the world. Walkers can take a stroll across the first level and enjoy a view of the Suize Valley.

Basilica of St John the Baptist

The church dedicated to St. John the Baptist was raised to collegiate status in 1474 and became a minor basilica in 1948. It is of average size - 55 metres long, 25 metres wide and 18 metres tall. It is a superb piece of architecture and it keeps alive the "history' of the town. Built in the early years of the 13th century then extended and altered until the 16th, it has a 13th-century nave, 14th-century side aisles and a transept, chancel and ambulatory dating from the 15th and 16th centuries. Inside, there are numerous works of art including an Entombment with life-sized figures, a Rod of Jesse and various pieces by the sculptor from Chaumont, Jean-Baptiste Bouchardon (High Altar, pulpit, Fabric Committee pew and furnishings).

The Turrets

The Turrets are the jewels in the crown that is Chaumont's architecture, their slender outlines pointing skywards and breaking up the line of façades on the old houses. There are more than 30 in all, some with rounded corbelling, others more rigid with austere vertical lines. Some of them are decorated with carved coats-of-arms or niches with statues. The turrets date from the 16th or 17th century and they house the spiral staircase leading to the upper floors of the houses in the town centre, especially in the old town that was once encircled by ramparts on a spur of rock.