As you may have heard, Normandy was pretty much destroyed during WW2. Mostly by American bombs, but there was a lot of help from the Germans.
As soon as the war ended, Normandy had to be rebuilt. To put things in perspective, compared to 'catastrophes' now, back in 1945 a city had to be declared 75% destroyed to qualify for classification as a disaster area. If it was only 74%, it received no emergency funds.
Most people are not aware of this, but Sweden assisted the French in rebuilding houses in Normandy. As a neutral country, it had almost no war damage and it has come out over the years that maybe it felt just a tad guilty about not having chosen sides.
The houses were built almost exclusively out of wood, which was unheard of in France outside of Savoie. But nobody was going to turn up their nose at any house that became available.
Quite a few of the Swedish houses still exist, and there are still 'Swedish' neighborhoods in some of the French Norman towns like Caen. Out of gratitude, the streets still have names like 'rue de Suède,' 'rue de Stockholm' or 'rue Gustav V'.
The houses were meant to be temporary, but after more than 60 years, people still love living in them.
How interesting! Of course the Normands were at least in part descendants of Scandinavians.
There are many farmhouses in Québec of Norman and other Northwestern French design, but built of the wood that was so abundant; moreover it proved a better insulating material than stone.
The "temporary building" my mum worked in as a lass in Ottawa during the Second World War was only pulled down a few years ago. It held up fine; the ministry just needed more space, so they put up a taller building.
I have indeed been to Normandy and seen many areas that were all newish. My friends who were in the Resistance as very young men in Le Havre (one has since died here in Montréal, the other is still alive in Paris but obviously very old) remember the destruction of their city. It is poignant, as obviously they were on the side of the Allies, but the Allies did the bulk of the damage. I also remember old Lyonnais résistants telling us (you know, they loved having a young audience) that the US airmen were "sloppy bombers". They thought the Brits were much more precise. Funny, that was 20 years ago. Imagine they have died in the meantime.
How interesting! And the houses look so Swedish! Surely Normandy doesn't need those steep snow roofs, does it? That church spire in the 1st picture must have been provided by the benevolent Swedes as well, from the look of it. What really strikes me is that except for the one that's been faced with stone, they all look more recent than 60 years ago.