Originally a girls boarding school, Pensionnat Catholique was one of the most famous and best equipped schools in the region. At its peak, the school hosted up to 640 pupils supervised by fifty nuns. The school was closed in 2001 and has been abandoned since, though the site was purchased by the town in early 2015 with plans to convert the site as a community centre. Although having over 16,000 m² of floor space, only a fraction of this site is being used as an elementary school that is still attended to this day.
Our plan had been to hit the place on the way up to Belgium, but we coincided our arrival with the end of the school day and so plenty of parents and kids around to thwart our entry. Fast forward 48 hours and we were back in the same spot and working our way inside. While most of the rooms were empty, the functional rooms such as the science labs and kitchen were mostly intact, while the gymnasium and chapel were the jewels in the crown.
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