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France launches lottery to help restore chateaux, monuments

| Thursday, May 31, 2018, 6:15 a.m.
The chateau of French philosopher Voltaire, near the Swiss border
Kassandra Kasparek
The chateau of French philosopher Voltaire, near the Swiss border

PARIS — President Emmanuel Macron is launching a national lottery to help restore France's magnificent chateaux and other historic monuments.

Macron is kicking off the project Thursday with a visit to the chateau of French philosopher Voltaire, near the Swiss border, to showcase an example of successful restoration.

A total of 250 sites will benefit from the financing. The list includes an 18th century fortress on a tiny Brittany island, the home of writer Aime Cesaire in the Caribbean, a 12th century Burgundy castle and a Roman aqueduct in eastern France.

Macron, a culture and history lover, hopes the operation will yield millions of euros for the French state, in addition to cash winnings for lucky players.

It is the first such project in France, though Britain has a similar initiative.

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