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Manche (Department, France)

Last modified: 2022-07-05 by ivan sache
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Flag of the Departmental Council of Manche - Image by Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018

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Administrative data

Code: 50
Region: Normandie (Basse-Normandie until 2014)
Traditional province: Normandy
Bordering departments: Calvados, Ille-et-Vilaine, Mayenne, Orne

Area: 5,938 km2
Population (2016): 498,362 inhabitants

Préfecture: Saint-Lô
Sous-préfectures: Avranches, Cherbourg, Coutances
Subdivisions: 4 arrondissements, 27 cantons, 477 municipalities.

The department is named after the French name of the English Channel.

Ivan Sache, 12 November 2009

Flag of the Departmental Council of Manche

The flag of the Departmental Council of Manche (photo, photo) is white with the council's emblem.
In the aftermath of the administrative reform (2015) that changed the institution's name from Conseil général to Conseil départemental, the emblem and flag were adapted. The graphic element remained the same but the colors were changed, from top to bottom, blue, green, yellow, instead of green, yellow, blue. The writing was also amended to "CONSEIL DÉPARTEMENTAL", in blue. "MANCHE" is written in a different font, based on the "branding code" released by the General Council in 2010.

Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018

West Normandie flag


Other flag of the Departmental Council of Manche - Image by Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018

On Tatihou island, the Departmental Council uses a "tourist-oriented" version of the flag, with a smaller, wavy emblem and the writing "WEST NORMANDIE" added beneath the official emblem.

"La Manche, West Normandie", "La Manche New Normandie" and "La Manche Eden Normandie" are the three components of the "branding code" released on 10 December 2010 by the General Council of Manche and aimed at promoting the department as a "new world".
The "branding code" is presented as "a semantic encoding system, visual (graphism; colors, photos...), polysensorial, which shall be inscribed in communication tools but also in the territory's physical environment and actions; a range of expressions, which, according to the theme, the context or the support, shall build and enrich common views; a language of emblematic actions, existing or to be invented, which shall help the territory's players towards innovation and originality, increasing the credibility and performance of its positioning".
The three expressions are universally understandable; their English translation (!), "West Normandy", "New Normandy", and "Eden Normandy" will keep the same meaning.
"West" refers to the Conquest of the West, the mythical evocation of a new world. The territory forms the western (oceanic) side of Normandy. The territory is able to build and re-invent itself (imaginary associated with the west). The matching lexical field includes "to conquer, to dynamize, to develop, boost, rise, productivity, to foresee, sun, ocean...".

The wavy symbol refers to water as a symbol of life, whose grapheme gave letter "M": the proto-Semitic symbol of water, the Phoenician letter "mem" and the Etruscan and Roman letters "M". This is particularly suitable for Manche, which is a peninsular territory, source of vitality.
The whole symbol is therefore derived from the proto-Semitic representation of water. It is also composed of letters "M" (black), for "Manche", and "N" (gray), for "Normandy". The arches forming the "M" evoke the shapes of the territory: Cotentin, the silhouette of the department, and the point of Mont-Saint-Michel. The mirrored arches further evoke the balance between the land and the sea, as "evidenced" by a photo of Mont-Saint-Michel reflected in water.

Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018

Flag of the former General Council


Flag of the General Council of Manche - Image by Ivan Sache, 24 June 2012

Th flag of the General Council of Manche, as seen hoisted on the sailboat Bred-La Normandie moored in the Vieux-Port of Marseilles during the Sailing Tour de France 2011, was white with the logo (presentation) adopted in 2009 as an "update" of the previous one. The emblem was revamped in more "modern" colors. The font used to write the name of the department is also more "modern".

Ivan Sache, 24 June 2012

Former flag of the General Council


Former flag of the General Council - Image by Ivan Sache, 30 September 2009

The former flag of the General Council of Manche (photo) is white with the former logo of the General Council.
The former logo (image) of the General Council of Manche shows the yellow silhouette of Mont-Saint-Michel flanked on its right by three ribbons blue, green and green, separated from each other by a thin white fimbriation and forming the stylized silhouette of the department. Below Mont-Saint-Michel are the writings "LA MANCHE" in half blue and green letters, and "CONSEIL GENERAL" in black letters.

Pascal Vagnat, 30 September 2009

Department brand flag


Department brand flag - Image by Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018

The Tourism Departmental Committee of Manche, which used the "Manche Tourism / West Normandie" brand, was transformed on 16 March 2017 into an "attractiveness agency" called Latitude Manche. To foster a "Manche spirit", a new "signature", "La Manche, changez de point de vue". was officially presented on 22 March 2017 in Cherbourg.
The new brand was soon used on a white flag, as seen in Saint-Vaast-la-Hougue in August 2017.

The new signature is based on three "founding elements":
- Manche;
- Mont-Saint-Michel;
- A radiating shape.
[Latitude Manche]

The "radiating shape" is derived from the symbol traditionally used to indicate a "noticeable point of view" on topographic maps. The symbol is also used, for the same purpose, on road signals (Ref. CE21; square, white with a blue border and the symbol in black.
The original symbol is made of one dot and four rays; here the dot is replaced by Mont-Saint-Michel, in light blue. The symbol alludes to the literal interpretation of the motto, "Change your point of view", but it can also be understood as "Change your mind" (on the department).

Ivan Sache, 17 April 2018