- 4 bedrooms
- 1 bathrooms
- 10 habitable rooms
- 450 square meters of living space
This part of the French department of Dordogne, in the midst of a Regional Nature Park, is renowned for its unspoilt flora and fauna, where farming, grazing and market gardening have been harmoniously developed in the countryside. This did not escape the attention of Buddhist monks who settled near to the “Maison du Parc” (literally Park House) nor the Montessori School which takes pride of place in the village. The quality of the way of life, the choice of organic farming and ecology made it possible to check depopulation. Equidistant from Limoges and Périgueux, its population is even increasing. The nearby town of La-Coquille has an SNCF train station and all amenities.
This castle, in parklands enclosed by walls and hedges, is set in the midst of the estate. It is surrounded, on the village side, by an orchard containing a multitude of fruit trees, a vegetable garden, a bridle path lined with lime trees over a hundred years old and L-shaped moats, on the edge of which stand high walls, covered with ivy. On the south side, wooded parklands extend as far as the outbuildings which delimit the property. The view continues from there over grasslands and a lake.
A vaulted porch way between the two pavilions constituting the actual house communicates with a vast, inner, paved courtyard, partially enclosed by the ruins of high walls which once formed a closed group of four square pavilions connected by wings. Numerous features are still visible amongst the ruins such as fireplaces on the various floors, alcoves and passageways through the thick masonry. The castle chapel still has its four walls, a stone stairway and two doors, outstandingly flanked by limestone lining the shale stone wall. They are adorned with sculpted pilasters, a pediment, a pietà in an alcove and two hammered cherubs.
A tower named after Saint-James flanked the wing on the left-hand side of the main door. It was destroyed by fire in the 17th century. The property was protected by masonry, water-filled moats as well as a fortified perimeter wall, flanked by five round towers, one of which is still in existence.
The main door was reached via two drawbridges; gaps visible in the facade still reveal the site of the mechanism for the carriage and pedestrian gates.
In the courtyard, near to a well that provides water all year round, is a hole which, according to tradition, led to underground rooms where treasure could still be found.
This castle, constructed from local shale stone, is composed of two tall, square pavilions, the flat tile, hip roof of which is laid on a wall-walk and machicolation. Four weather vanes, one of which features fleur-de-lis with a Marquis’ crown, top the ends of the ridge. Eight chimneys join to form a single stack above the north pavilion. The windows are framed with granite and those on the first floor are topped with a shale relieving arch.
The construction of the central wing, set back in relation to the pavilions, made it possible to create numerous firing stations in the corners of each level in order to protect the drawbridge and the main doors. These are now adorned with white limestone rusticated masonry moulding representing pilasters topped with cornices, pediments and finials.
Although on the outskirts of the village, this property appears to be completely isolated once inside the gates. The many architectural features on the facade and the outstanding romantic ruins, surrounding the paved courtyard, captivate visitors, caught up in the great history of France, between defence and splendour, between daydreaming and reality. It would be ideal for numerous projects: breathing new life back into the ruins, the moats and the outbuildings, exploring the passageways and the underground rooms enhanced with fireplaces below the courtyard or, simply, converting the south pavilion in order to increase the accommodation capacity. The house, comparable to that of a large family home, would lend itself to a bed & breakfast activity. The additional purchase of an adjoining plot of land would mean that the original entrance could be restored.
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