The Écluse des Repenties and the Parc de la Citadelle in Valenciennes (XVIII.)
A huge park provides an opportunity to discover the remains of the Ecluse des Repenties (the penitents’ lock), the now restored Citadelle (fortress) bridge, and the bastions of Les Repenties and Le Calvaire. The lock was the centrepiece of Valenciennes' defensive system. Thanks to it, as a defensive measure the town could flood the approaching plain, preventing any invasion from this side of the town which lacked natural defences. Its name comes from the presence of a convent of penitent nuns, known as La Madeleine.