The Bell and the Sheep Bell Museum
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The Bell and Sheep Bell Museum

The Bell and Sheep Bell Museum


Musée de la Cloche et de la Sonnaille * Bell and Sheep Bell Museum 



Tourism and disability mark for motor, mental and visual disabilities

Member of the network "Musées de territoire de l'Hérault"

The Museum, a vast vessel in raw  concrete covered with a copper roof, presents, in a beautiful space  of 1000m2, with air-conditioning, the various techniques of manufacture, as well as the uses and the sound environment of all the productions of the old foundry of bells, property of the family  Granier since 1600: the  copper cladded sheet Sheep bells of the pastoral world, the little spherical bells and the cowbells in melted metal and finally  : the  church bells.

Accessible  from  the Green Route  Passa Païs  - 3.5km from Lamalou les Bains,  the museum is implanted on the site of the former  train station of Hérépian, where a beautiful esplanade with tables and benches welcomes the guests and the walkers for a break in the shade of hackberries.

Educational above all, with particularly studied in acoustics, the Museum of Hérépian is unique.

A Museum accessible to all : mental, visual, physical disabilities.

The Museum is made of 4 parts :

  • Manufacturing and use of sheep bells
  • Manufacturing and use of little bells and little spherical bells
  • Manufacturing and use of the church bell
  • Symbolism and musicality of the bell in 6 pinacles and finally, room of the quadraphony

A museographic course, didactic, playful and interactive, at the same time !

In memory of gestures and traditions!

A Museum where you can see, touch, handle, ring and hear !


Opening times 2016:

From May to October

Open daily from 2 p.m. to 7 p.m. except on Monday

Guided tours on reservation

Guided tours for groups all the year on reservation


Temporary exhibitions (free admission)

European Night of Museums: 21 may 2016

European Heritage Days: sptember 2016



Espace Campanaire André Malraux
Avenue de la Gare

+33/4 67 95 39 95                          +33/4 67 23 23 96   

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  • Adult: €5
  • 7-18 and students: €4
  • Under 7 free
  • Disabled: €4.50 (production of proof)
  • Family: €4 for adults and €2 between 7 and 18



Historical Background
The idea to create a Museum of the Bell and the Sheep Bell in Hérépian arose from the presence in the village of a foundry of bells stayed in the family Granier from 1600 till 1994.
Nailmakers since 1600 in St Laurent of the Nières in the  Héraultais countryside, they later became  ‘sonnaillers’ : sheep bell makers (or ‘esquilièrs ‘ in Occitan).
Around 1920, Joseph Granier built a new factory in Castanet le Bas, where  water was more readily available and started producing  little spherical bells.
In 1931, they decided  to realize church bells having bought the necessary plans in Germany. 
In 1970, the company, managed at the time, by François Granier, transfered gradually its activities to Hérépian in a more spacious and more accessible location.
At the time of its closure in 2011, it was the oldest foundry in France and the only one to make 3 sorts of bells: sheep bells used for the cattle, the little spherical bells and the cowbells in molten metal, and church bells.

So, in 1989, an ethnological and technical study was decided to record its knowledge.
This study (made by the Conseil Général de l’Hérault) allowed the realization of a movie and a report which led to  the creation of the museum.
Finally, in 1998, after 9 years of search and work, the Museum of the Bell and the Sheep Bell opened its doors.

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