In the village of Ermenonville some 40km northeast of Paris on the edge of the forest Jean-Jacques Rousseau died in 1778. 1.5km/1mi north is France's first private zoo.
Founded 1955 by the actor Jean Richard, who appeared in 80 films, but it was for his portrayal of the pipe-smoking detective Maigret in the French television series based on Georges Simenon's books that he became a household name in France.
Later, Jean Richard also developed the theme park at Ermenonville known as La Mer de Sable, now one of France's most popular attractions.
Jean Richard was born in Bessines, France 18 April 1921; he married 1957 Annick Tanguy (-1999); and he died in Senlis, France 12 December 2001. They had two children; son Jean-Pierre Richard and daughter Elizabeth Richard.