The Great French Inventions Expedition: Lyon and Chalon-sur Sâone, September 10-12, 2019

10 September 2019 - 12 September 2019

10:00 - 17:00

Lyon and Chalon-sur Sâone
Musée Lumière
25 Rue du Premier-Film

Non RPS Member£20.00
RPS Member£20.00
Group Member£20.00

Members of the Historical Group are invited to join in three visits in three days taking us to the invention of photography, the invention of cinema, and the invention of the autochrome (and much more).

Tuesday, September 10 at 10.00:

Musée Lumière

Institut Lumière

25 Rue du Premier-Film

69352 Lyon

Wednesday, September 11 at 10.00:

Maison de Nicéphore Niépce

1 Place Nicéphore Niépce

71240 Saint-Loup-de-Varennes

Thursday, September 12 at 10.00;

Musée Nicéphore Niépce

28 quai des Messageries

71100 Chalon-sur-Sâone

In Lyon, at the Institut Lumière, we will be hosted by Elodie Cartier-Millon who will give us a guided tour in English. She describes the autochrome as Louis Lunière's 'masterpiece of invention', but as well, she will tell us of the invention of cinema, instant photography, photostereosynthesis, the Verascope, and we will see Antoine Lumière's Camera.

At Saint-Loup-de-Varenne, at the Maison Niépce, where the world's first (certainly longest extant) photograph was made, we will be hosted by Pierre-Yves Mahé of Spéos, the International Photography School. The house is not normally open at this time of year, and Pierre-Yves is coming from Paris to guide us.

At Chalon-sur-Sâone, at the Musée Nicéphore Niépce, Laurent Vallon will give us a guided tour of the very fine premises, the collection, and the current exhibition.

Practical Matters

All travel arrangements (with one minor exception), accommodation, and other expenses will be the responsibility of participants who will have to make all their own arrangements. However, there will be plenty of advice and guidance available, such as follows:


Lyon (population 513,275) is worth visiting for lots of reasons in addition to seeing what the Lumière Brothers did there. It is readily accessible by rail – TGV from Paris Gare de Lyon (the clue is in the name) in about two hours. Departures hourly or more frequently. By plane: Easyjet fly from at least four UK cities and other airlines are available. There is a shuttle train from the airport to the city centre.

Lyon to Chalon-sur-Sâone by train takes about 1 hour 20 minutes and there are 17 trains per day. Chalon-sur-Sâone (population 45,390) is a fascinating town, a trading cross-roads in Roman times and, strangely, given where it is, a port.

The one (short) journey which will be organised for the group is the minibus or taxi ride (15 minutes, 7.9 km) between Chalon-sur-Sâone and the Maison Niépce at Saint-Loup-de-Varennes on the Thursday morning. (We are advised that, for lunch, there is an excellent restaurant at Saint-Loup )


Lyon is full of hotels and you can take your pick. For example, Hotel Le Lumière is a two-star hotel five minutes from the Institut but there are plenty of alternatives at a wide range of prices. See

The 3-star Hotel Le Saint George in Chalon-sur-Sâone was identified for the abandoned trip in 2018 and will welcome us again. An alternative is the two-star Hotel Saint Jean, three minutes from the Musée Niépce.


Booking is by this website. There will be a limit on numbers – twenty – and we suspect that it will be a popular trip, not least because of the Lyon/Lumière dimension, so first come, first served.  A non-refundable deposit of £20 is required. For any further information, contact organiser David Bruce at:

David Bruce
Email the event organiser

Group(s): Historical