Rue Keréon has always been the most commercial street in Quimper. It owes its name to the Guild of cobblers and bootmakers who worked and sold leather.
In the Middle Ages, this narrow main road led from place Saint-Corentin to a larger space at the crossroads of rue Saint-Francois and rue des Boucheries ; called place Maubert or place aux Herbes (Grassy Place) or even place aux legumes (Vegetable Place). From this point, the street redescends as far as pont Médard which spans the Steir river. Former drawbridge, this work of art was the junction between the episcopal lands which included the whole of rue Keréon and the ducal quarter on the other side.
Today pedestrianised, its constructions contain great diversity ; half-timbered houses alongside grand granite-bond homes – they were later on obliged to build with this material after the powerful fire of June 1762 which began on the west side of the street and took a great number of houses.
Following this the town hall asked the civil engineer André to draw up a first town plan in 1764. This was aimed in particular at the straightening out of rue Keréon’s layout and the alignment of new stone facades. The advent of the Revolution would prevent the undertaking from being completed.
Because of this the charm of times gone by has been partly retained. Today the old dwellings are listed, protected and restored. A policy encouraging facade redecoration has permitted the re-discovery of the polychromy of the half-timbers and an appreciation of their historical value.