André Kovacs – Stella Plage
The small seaside resort of Stella is well worth a visit. André Kovacs knows a thing or two about the small beach here which became very popular after the Second World War and continued to attract visitors right up to the early 90s. “Lots of houses were built after the war, when huge numbers of miners would come to Stella to rest, relax and enjoy the fresh sea air. Up until the 1970s, all you needed to do before building was simply state your intent! And land was very reasonably priced at the time.”
Today, André aims to bring life back to his town, both through his position as President of the Stella 2000 organisation and through his role as a Greeter. This lively pensioner thinks nothing of jumping on his mountain bike to show visitors the surrounding countryside. “I know of a challenging trail which leads down to the Baie de Canche, and which is suitable for experienced cyclists. There’s also a great bike ride for families which starts in Stella, and heads through the forest and the seafront at Le Touquet. Every so often I stop and explain some of the history of Le Touquet, and its golf course, horse-racing track and airport.” It was at this airport that English visitors used to arrive with their own cars. “These aircraft were so huge that I always had the impression they were going to crash!”
André also takes visitors for walks through the dunes, around the town’s old villas or towards the bunker. Not intended as marathon hikes, his walks are entertaining and enjoyable, and full of history and anecdotes which give visitors a better understanding of Stella’s past, present and future.