About Thiers the French cutlery Capital
Thiers, the French cutlery capital, has preserved much heritage connected to this traditional industry. The Factory Valley (Vallée des Usines), located below the medieval quarter, was a key cutlery production centre from the 14th to 20th centuries and is now a particularly mysterious site with a string of industrial building remains situated along the turbulent Durolle river. Some previously disused ones have now been renovated, like the Creux de l'Enfer, a former cutlery works that is now a contemporary art centre, and L'Usine de May, today home to the industrial history museum (Maison de l'Aventure Industrielle).
Every visit to Thiers must of course include a trip to the Cutlery museum (Musée de la Coutellerie), a very interesting place that traces the history of cutlery-making in Thiers and puts on workshop demonstrations of this wonderful skill.
Cutlery fans should also make a point of visiting the art knife festival (Festival du Couteau d'Art), which takes place here every year in May.