jeudi 13 janvier 2011

A crumbling confection........................

Yesterday, we had been driving out along a road we had not driven along before - only about 5 miles or so from our little chateau - when we stumbled upon the most amazing confection! Mark slammed on the brakes, I got out the car and I stood in absolute amazement. It had been under our noses all the time and we never knew. A fabulous building not far from the edge of the road. I could see it looked empty and knew I just had to get closer. But, aswe were "en route" for a rendezvous, we had to continue our journey.

Last night I couldn`t sleep for thinking about it, and so today we went off, in the rain, with our camera. We arrived and tried to get through a crumbling old gate which came off in my hands (!) which Mark had to lift it back into place just as three huge dogs dashed over from inside the garden barking loudly!
We realised that someone was living on the courtyard in front of the building so followed the road around until we found a small driveway marked "PRIVEE".

Undeterred we left the car and walked into the yard to be met by the same huge dogs who happened, fortunately to be friendly  - and a charming farmer in overalls. We asked permission to photograph the place and he agreed telling us that he lived in the farmhouse on the courtyard. He had inherited the all of the buildings from his father , who had in turn had inherited them from his father and so it had been passed down through the generations.
So, with permission granted. out came the camera and I will show you the photographs just as this delicious old building unfolded it`s charms.
Starting with the view from the road when we slammed on the brakes!! Click on the photographs to enlarge them ( a double click will go really close in!)
The side view on the drive where we asked the farmer for permission to proceed.......
And then.....what I was waiting for......the front view.......

................absolutely enchanting you have to agree? Just look at the faux bois rails that flank the stone steps.
Whilst I stood talking to the farmer Mark did some shots of some of the gorgeous features. The farmer told me it was built in the 1500s and no one had lived there since the early 1900s. Sadly, he cannot afford to restore it and it will stay empty and slowly decaying. As we spoke I was willing him to ask me if I wanted to peek inside, and yes, it is true that my friends say I can get where water wouldn`t! But sadly, this time I failed and the invitation didn`t come. I figured I had already pushed my luck enough intruding into the farmer`s day so didn`t ask!
So I will console myself with.....................

.....Divine Oeil de boeuf zinc windows and that sweet little bell...............

...........................pointy roofs, zinc finials...tall stone chimnies and tiny windows.........

A turret that the farmer tells me houses a twisting stone staircase.
This is the only place I would ever consider selling our beloved chateau for and I never thought I would ever say that!! 
But, it is not for sale and it will remain standing proud like an old Dame and hopefully in the same family for more generations. Perhaps the next generation will be able to afford to save it? I do hope so. I am desperate to see inside and I may burst if I cannot peer in , even if the floor is unsafe I could peer in through the doorway or a window?
The only inhabitants are the white barn owls...............I need to grow wings!!!

11 commentaires:

  1. Oh WOW!
    That is just fairytale stuff.....I would be dying to have a look inside too.
    I think you will definitely have to grow wings and take your camera with you next time.....
    Julie x

  2. What a fantastic place ! what a shame the farmer can not afford to renovate- having said that I bet it is totally unspoilt- I hope one day it has a sympathetic owner with big pockets to do it justice !

  3. Swimming acts the water now.Will be there soon.xxxxooooo tarte

  4. Simply Amazing to me, I just can't even imagine a house that old.So sad it will just sit~Cheers Kim

  5. What a treasure you found. Can you bring the farmer a gateau?
    Mary Ann

  6. What a fantastic place - if only it was for sale & I had the money, I would be straight there, we could be nutty neighbours!
    T X

  7. Following you now...that was SUCH a great post. Can't wait to see the rest.

  8. How enchanting, like a fairytale castle, such a shame that it is not cared for, perhaps one day you will get a peep inside.

  9. Are you sure the owner would not want to sell? I wonder if he has any idea how many people would love to restore and live in this magnificent chateau! We've been watching a television program here in the U.S. called House Hunters International (, in which people do just that very thing.. and you should see some of the buildings they choose that are in much worse condition. Because of their love for the old, they step inside of old stone buildings completely gutted, some without walls.. and yet speak of its beauty and how they envision restoring it. And then they film in the future to show the after of what they've done and it's amazing! Perhaps the farmer needs a bit of coaxing, you never know. :^)

  10. I hope at least you'll be able to get some pictures of the inside before some wall comes crashing down, the future owners will be glad you did so , and at least your curiosity will be pardoned in some strange way by the fact that you are helping to document something in eminent danger of disappearing....