Last modified: 2014-04-24 by ivan sache
Keywords: var | pierrefeu-du-var |
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Flag of Pierrefeu-du-Var - Image by Olivier Touzeau, 13 July 2013
The municipality of Pierrefeu-du-Var (5,548 inhabitants in 2010, 5,836 ha; municipal website) is located near the Mediterranean Sea, 20 km north of Hyères.
Pierrefeu (in Provencal, Peire Fue) was mentioned for the first time around year 1000, as Petra Foc, from two Latin words, petra, "a stone", "a rock", and focus, "a fire", "a settlement". The old village of Pierrefeu was indeed built on the Sainte-Croix hill, a rocky spur (150 m above sea level) dominating a wide plain. Forests cover 60% of the municipal territory, while Pierrefeu is renowned for red and rosé wines made with Grenache, Cinsault, Syrah and Mourvèdre grapes.
The Cuers-Pierrefeu base of the Air Force of the Navy was established in 1919 and closed in 1967. The dirigible Dixmude (history), indeed a German zeppelin transferred to the French Navy as part of war damages, was stationed in Pierrefeu. Reactivated in 1923, the Dixmude operated long distance trips over the Mediterranean Sea (up to 9,000 km in 118 hours of flight, then the world record). On 21 or 23 December 1923, the Dixmude, exploded off the coast of Sicily after having been hit by a lightning. The accident claimed 50 lives, only two bodies being eventually retrieved from the sea. The event marked the end of the military use of dirigibles.
Ivan Sache, 13 July 2013
The flag of Pierrefeu-du-Var, as seen in July 2013 is white with the municipal coat of arms, outlined in yellow and surmounted by a black cartouche, also outlined in yellow and inscribed with "PIERREFEU-DU-VAR" yellow letters.
The canting arms of Pierrefeu are "Gules a five-famed fire or issuant
from a rock argent surrounded by letters 'P' and 'F' of the second".
The five flames represent the five hamlets of La Portanière, Les Vidaux, Saint)Jean, La Tuilière and Beauvais.
Olivier Touzeau & Ivan Sache, 13 July 2013