The Cellars of the Blancs Moussis
Construction of the Roman Cellars, or Cellars of the Blancs Moussis, was begun in 1782.
The cluster of buildings which would become offices for the administration of both the Principality and the Abbey were completed in1787. The original purpose for the Cellars is not known: the brick vaulting gives it a very particular atmosphere that seems more ancient than it is in reality. In 1959, in their search for a suitable space in which to mark Laetare Sunday (the fourth Sunday in Lent), the dynamic and ever-youthful Brotherhood of the Blancs-Moussis, or the White-clad, took on the project of transforming what had become a communal dumping area into a place where they could hold their celebrations. Having removed many tons of rubble, the following year the beaten-earth floor was dressed with shale slabs recovered from tannery tanks that had been housed in a nearby wing, known as the Belgacom wing. In fact, the area that became the tannery was originally built as the living quarters for the Prince-Abbot himself. Today, the Cellars are the venue for, amongst other events, the receptions organised for The Friends of the Festival.