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Lille and the northern reaches of France were largely protected from the civil unrest caused by Doomsday due to the nuclear strikes that effectively separated them from France. Because of the strikes in the Netherlands, Belgium and Germany, Lille and the Flemish Lands were effectively exclaves of civilization in a radioactive landscape.
Following Doomsday, Lille and the northern cities found themselves cut off from the government of the rest of France, largely speaking. As such, each city declared quarantines and deployed the Gendarmes and Police to help retain order. The regional governments of Picardy and Nord - Pas-de-Calais coordinated efforts to triage the victims of the nuclear bombings of Paris, but by mid 1984 the government of Picardy had collapsed and most cities there were city-states if in any functional order at all.
Lille enacted strict laws for military protection, with high conscription following an extensive public awareness campaign. The citizens of Lille responded favorably, and by the end of 1986, the region immediately surrounding Lille was secured, and outposts were established.
1989 saw a restoration of law and order in Amiens and spreading rule of law throughout Picardy. Contact was made with the Celtic Alliance, but treated the situation as if they were a group of survivors and feigned ignorance of the status of the inland areas. Citizens along the coastal reaches were told not to allow foreigners to penetrate the hinterland.
Elections of 1995
General public elections were held in 1995, and while the candidates were limited by the government to those members of officially sanctioned parties, the clear winner was Adrien Hendryks of the Patrie, Liberté, Solidarité Party. The PLS has been largely viewed as responsible for the restoration of civil liberties to the populace despite the ongoing curfew. The curfew was and is accepted by citizens as a means of protecting themselves from the unrest that had engulfed Picardy in the 1980's.
Constitution of 1999
As part of the new millennium, President Hendryks announced a renewed constitution for the country, and delegates were invited from all regions. The resultant constitution was a hybrid of Belgian and French constitutions, although biased toward the French constitution and the Republican forms.
Military curfews were ended in 2000 as part of the constitution process, however, there remains a Zone du Contrôle Militaire near the borders of Lille-et-Terres-Flamande to protect against marauders. Citizens of the nation are involved in the Home Guard from the age of 16 to 45, and Home Guard Reserves from 45 to 60, much as the Swiss had been prior to Doomsday.
End of Isolation
With renewed contact with other French states, and a growing sense of security, the government at Lille has approached Burgundy-and-Franche-Comté about restoring the status of the now-largely abandoned Champagne region of France. Treaties were concluded in 2008, and the first vintage of Champagne manufactured according to the regulations that existed prior to Doomsday is expected to be released in 2013, as a Restoration Vintage, celebrating survival and renewal 40 years following Doomsday. Some of this vintage held for release in 2016 according to typical practice prior to Doomsday. Subsequent bottlings will proceed in normal fashion, restoring the flow of Champagne to the wider world.