Digoin, daughter of the Loire and channels ...
Covering an area of 3472 hectares, the city of Digoin enjoys a privileged location. It is located on the outskirts of southern Burgundy, at the confluence of the Arroux, the Bourbince, Arconce Vouzance and along the banks of the Loire, the last wild river in Europe.
Water is everywhere in Digoin, until the circle, so much so that we can win the heart of the city without crossing a bridge, a specificity that is to Digoin the nickname "island of Charolais."
With its diverse backgrounds, the Loire has a flora and fauna as varied biological richness is recognized at European level and variety of habitats and species that can actually meet a field of study unique in France (Loire Valley between Devay and Digoin, site or proposed site of Community importance Natura 2000). River relatively free of human activities, the Loire has retained a natural dynamic that spawned a whole series of diverse backgrounds: sandy strikes, lawns and grasslands, riparian forests, ponds ..., found in the region Digoin . Botanical garden in the open, the flora of the major and minor beds of the Loire is characterized by a high number of species whose rarity or absence also gives its originality to this region. It is a migration route of the first order plant, and is characterized by a juxtaposition of southern species and circumboreal. The formations of colonization of silt, sand and pebbles, and the complex of lawns and grasslands are the mainstay of the original flora of the Loire Valley. Throughout his journey, crossing the Loire natural areas that are so many influences on its flora. Listed since 2000 on the World Heritage List of UNESCO, the ornithological interest of the Loire Valley (inscribed in Significant Areas for the Conservation of Birds - IBA) is also linked to many different settings. In addition, the valley is a migration route of the first importance for Migration North-South and East-West birds, for the staging of spring and autumn (waders, ducks, waders ...) and for wintering species such as geese.
Loire city with a rich past, at the confluence of rivers, Digoin is also crossed by the Central Canal, the canal from Roanne to Digoin and channel Lateral to the Loire. This is a fishing paradise with 100 km of shoreline within 6 km, green landscapes and rivers with whitewater and fish. The history and economic development of the city have always been closely linked to the Loire and channels.
Preferred crossing point in the Gallo-Roman Digoin became a river crossroads during the following centuries and has successfully established itself as a center of transit of goods. In the Middle Ages, Digoin is a small village inhabited by peasants and sailors, symbolic occupations of the economy of the time. In the 15th and 16th centuries, the city does not escape history and undergoes the reverse of the religious wars thus losing much of its inhabitants. The following centuries, Digoin lives to the rhythm of the river and became a city of the Loire and navy. Most houses are built along the waterfront and the population grows.
Canals built in the 19th century, are a vital asset in the development of the city. A new activity, ceramics, appears. The housing estates spring up. Economic activity is at its height, favoring the installation of companies.