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WHAT CHANGES IN FRANCE

On the Agenda: What’s happening in France this week

From wine festivals to political meetings, plus the change for a sneak peek inside France's most famous buildings and - for readers in Paris - a BBC comedy recording, here's what is happening in France this week.

On the Agenda: What's happening in France this week
Photo by DOMINIQUE FAGET / AFP

Monday 

Terror appeal – An appeal trial is set to begin as two men ruled to have helped Islamist gunmen prepare a deadly 2015 attack on satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo seek to overturn their convictions. Ali Riza Polat, 37, was sentenced to 30 years in prison after it was ruled he had helped the Kouachi brothers and Amedy Coulibaly secure weapons. Amar Ramdani, was handed 20 years in prison for supplying weapons and financing the attacks – the maximum allowed under law.

BBC comedy recording – for readers in Paris, the British comedian Mark Steele is recording a radio show in front of a live audience on Monday evening – with an English show at 6pm and a French one at 8pm. Tickets are free, full details here.

Tuesday

Fiction – The La Rochelle fiction festival begins, a film festival which runs until Sunday. Full details here.  

Parliamentary days – the French communist party holds its Journées parliamentaires in Alliers, north east France. These ‘parliamentary days’ are a political tradition for any party that has MPs sitting in the Assemblée nationale and provide a chance for all MPs from the party to meet and discuss ideas and strategy for the parliamentary term ahead. They are usually held in September or October.

Thursday

Back-to-school – French families on low incomes will receive the annual ‘back-to-school allowance’ of €100 to cover the costs of the new school year. 

Musica festival – the annual Musica festival of classical music begins in Strasbourg on Thursday and runs until October 2nd. Full details here.

More parliamentary days – Edouard Philippe’s new centrist Horizons party holds its Journées parliamentaires in Fontainebleau, while centre-right Les Répbulicains hold theirs in Biarritz. 

Friday 

More parliamentary days – the far-right Rassemblement National holds its parliamentary days at Cap d’Adge.

Wine festival – celebrating the wine harvest, the southern French city of Nîmes holds its Feria des vendanges. 

Saturday 

Heritage days – On France’s Journées du patrimoine thousands of venues throw open their doors to the public for (usually free) tours, giving you a chance to see inside venues usually not open to the public, such as the president’s Elysée Palace. The event runs on Saturday and Sunday – more details here.

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WHAT CHANGES IN FRANCE

On the Agenda: What’s happening in France this week

From crunch time in pay negotiations for railway workers to seasonal festivals and the small matter of a football match, here's what is happening in France this week.

On the Agenda: What's happening in France this week

Monday

Train disruption – there was major disruption over the weekend as train conductors and ticket inspectors walked out, leading to around half of all TGV services being cancelled. The strike ended on Sunday night, but there is expected to be significant knock-on disruption on Monday. 

Tuesday 

St Nicolas Day – this festival is a huge deal in Germany, but it’s also celebrated in the historic Alsace region of France. The festival involves parades in some towns, gifts for well-behaved children (and a visit from a scary figure with a whip for bad kids) and lots of gingerbread.

What you need to know about St Nicolas Day in France

Wednesday 

Rail strike – unions have issued a provisional strike notice for Wednesday, ahead of a crunch day of talks on Thursday in the ongoing pay negotiations for SNCF workers.

Thursday

Railway pay negotiations – the key meeting between bosses and unions representing French rail workers. Depending on how these talks go, there could be further strike action over the Christmas and New Year weekends. 

Fête des lumières – the Lyon festival of lights begins on Thursday and runs until Sunday. The festival is the biggest and most famous of the many light festivals that take place in France through December.

What you need to know about the Lyon festival of lights

Friday 

Right to die – launch of the citizen convention looking at France’s right to die laws. This is the beginning of a public consultation looking at the question of whether France should relax its laws on assisted suicide. It comes after the national Ethics Committee for Health and Life Sciences issued a positive response on the question of assisted suicide. 

Saturday

France v England – France take on England in the quarter finals of the men’s football World Cup in Qatar.

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