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Pays du Perche

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Quality of life and a pleasant environment greatly appreciated by nearby Parisians
1 in 5 properties is a holiday home
Concentration of printing & publishing and small-scale construction businesses
34 business/industrial parks, 322,000m2 available

Situated to the extreme south-west of Orne and occupying 25.3% of the department, this Pays covers a total surface area of 1,542km2. It comprises 8 cantons and 111 communes, 78 of which are located within the Perche Regional Natural Park. According to the 01-01-2009 census, the Pays du Perche is home to 48,666 inhabitants, i.e. 16.6% of the département's total population, hence a mean density of 31 inhabitants per km2. The Pays is structured around the town of Mortagne-au-Perche (the only town with over 2,000 inhabitants), together with 4 further towns with over 1,000 inhabitants and several rural boroughs.

A total of 1,668 established businesses (552 in industry, 556 in the trade sector and 560 in the services sector), employing a total of 8,173 salaried workers (5,636 in industry, 1,223 in trade and 1,314 in services).
The Perche area benefits from an excellent reputation based on the balance between its landscapes, its preserved environment and the quality of life it offers (several category 1 waters for fishing, entertainment, leisure activities and services close at hand). The Perche is particularly privileged by its proximity to Paris, hence one in five residential properties is a holiday home.
Printing and publishing is the area's leading employer, all of the sector's constituents being represented locally: graphic artists, illustrators, photographers, specialised or book printers, production of digital audio-video media (CD, CD-Rom, DVD). Together with the automobile and chemical industries, the three sectors represent 314 businesses throughout the Pays, 24 of which employ over 50 salaried workers.
Services to individuals and businesses, together with trade and repair outlets represent over 65% of the area's economic activity. 95% of these businesses employ less than 10 salaried workers. The Perche is home to over 900 small-scale businesses. A dynamic sector (sustained by the area's many holiday homes), providing job creation and added territorial value; however a fragile sector due to its ageing entrepreneurial population in need of fresh blood.
The number of business establishments has increased by 18% from 1995 to 2004.
Annual business creation (essentially small-scale) increased by 10% throughout the Pays in 2004.

A major share of the territory's commercial and business economy has been developed around the economic fallout generated by the area's many holiday homes and tourist facilities. Aware of the area's demographic fragility (ageing population and mass departure of its youth – the Pays has more over 60's than it does under 20's), the communes and communities of communes in the Perche Ornais have developed business parks equipped to welcome not only industrial activities, but also small-scale and commercial businesses. The territory therefore encompasses some 34 business/industrial parks with over 322,000m2 available for business development.
The mass arrival of holiday home buyers, together with the Perche's excellent reputation, have enabled the development of a genuine tourist economy, based on the maintenance and renovation of rural habitat concurrent to the establishment of local tourist attractions. Local trade and craftsmanship have made the most of this phenomenon, as well as a proliferation of suppliers in tourism-related activities. Nevertheless, the Perche is yet to develop a structured tourist offer worthy of its great potential.
The Perche Regional Natural Park concentrates its efforts on preserving the Perche's natural environment and heritage, hence ensuring its attractiveness. It is involved in a diversity of fields from energy, urbanisation and construction, agriculture and forestry, culture and information to marketing. Within the framework of a partnership agreement, the Park and the Pays du Perche have agreed on their respective missions to ensure the area's sustainable development.

  • Hôtel du Tribunal à Mortagne au Perche
  • Population active dans la ZE de L'Aigle Mortagne
  • Vue sur la campagne
  • Cadran solaire sur une maison à tourelle du XVIe