To celebrate 100 years of train service, the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur Conseil Régional (regional council) organised a series of popular events from Nice to Digne-les-Bains on 3 July 2011. Members of the public were invited to take part in these festivities, which brought together all those involved in the railway.
Visit the Chemins de Fer de Provence centenary website launched by the Provence-Alpes-Côte d’Azur region
To mark the occasion, Chemins de Fer de Provence (CP) organised a special metre-gauge train for 200 officials from towns and villages along the Nice to Digne track. Members of the public took part by booking spots on the eight regular train services.
Villars sur Var
The centenary stamp
On 24 June, the French postal service La Poste launched a stamp commemorating the Chemins de Fer de Provence – Train des Pignes centenary. Issued in partnership with CP, it was unveiled in Digne-les-Bains.
The stamp had two aims: to celebrate the 100th anniversary of this atypical train line connecting the Mediterranean and the Southern Alps and to promote the beautiful Mediterranean hinterland seen from the Train des Pignes.
A temporary post office opened from 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. on Friday 24 June and from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. on Saturday 25 June at the CP train station in Digne-les-Bains.
Over these two days, stamp lovers and other visitors got an exclusive look at the new stamp, which features views of the Train des Pignes, the old steam engine (which still runs today), the Côte d’Azur and the Alpine viaducts. Stamp collectors were able to purchase first day covers from the temporary post office.
La Poste and the Train des Pignes have many things in common. The Train des Pignes is essential to economic growth and tourism in the Mediterranean hinterland, and provides access to 30 municipalities. La Poste has a strong presence throughout the region and plays a major role in terms of the economy and social conditions. They both make key contributions to regional development.
With this stamp celebrating 100 years of the Chemins de Fer de Provence – Train des Pignes, La Poste hopes to increase the visibility of this picturesque railway line and give residents a new way of promoting their Region.