a 17th century manor house, with a water-filled moat and a dovecote
The last house before the meadows comprising the surrounding countryside, this property stands on the outskirts of a small, lively medieval town, perched on the top of a valley. This town, renowned for being on the southern edge of the Périgord-Limousin Regional Nature Park, is an old fortified village on the Périgueux-Limoges road and a stopover for pilgrims travelling along the Way-of-Saint-James. Its SNCF train station has links to Paris via Limoges and to Bordeaux via Périgueux.
Completely enclosed and adjoining another property on the west side, it is surrounded by gardens, exuding a variety of ambiances, connected by narrow passageways and steps on several levels. The wide, south-facing, main terraced area is partially paved and partially laid to lawn. It provides a variety of restful views: a few steps go down to a dovecote which is reflected in the fish-filled water of the masonry moat; a water well fitted with a winch and covered with tiles is near to a garden table, whilst a yew tree, probably two hundred years old, enhances the area with its shade. The old wrought iron entrance gates open on to a footbridge leading to a small wood alongside the canal. A gap behind the low stone wall, topped with railings set between ornate stone pillars, reveals a distant hill, cows and a walnut grove. In the foreground, a small garden features a fountain surrounded by decoratively trimmed boxwood.
The large, luxurious home
This rectangular building, spanning 30x8.70 m, is constructed from lime-pointed, exposed dressed stone and quarry stone blocks, topped with a steep, gable roof covered with flat tiles. It is flanked towards one end of its north facade by a pavilion, probably older, the hipped roof of which is enhanced with Roman tiles, forming the hip capping, as well as two weathervanes, one at each end of the ridge. There is no guttering under the eaves or shutters on the windows, apart from the French windows, so as to preserve the authenticity of the architecture and to enhance, the south facade's triple overhanging cornice and its mullioned window, topped with a 5-pointed star in a pentagram.
The current main entrance, decorated with Renaissance-style moulding by a local craftsman, opens into a small vestibule, with a stone floor made smooth through use. It provides access to a boiler room, a storage room at the top of a stairway and a study, the fireplace of which delimits the end of the building. Just like most of the rooms, it receives light from the south and has a view over the parklands through a tall, wooden-framed, small-paned window, protected by indoor, panelled shutters. It has a pebble-lined floor, lime-rendered walls and coloured glazed woodwork.
In the same way as those with wooden frames and small panes above the study doors, numerous fanlights let light pass from one room to another throughout the manor house.
At the foot of the main stairway is the old entrance, the old stone landing of which is used as a corridor leading to a large lounge. The latter reflects the Louis XV style, with a white, moulded ceiling, built-in cupboards, pilasters and a mirror with a sculpted stucco surround above a fireplace, in good working order. The floor, covered with terracotta tiles from Lempzours, extends into an adjoining dining room and fitted kitchen. The decor in these two rooms reflects the Louis XIII style and exudes a certain rusticity courtesy of the decision to leave the original joists and some of the stone walls exposed.
The kitchen, the only through room, opens on to a corridor with a toilet and a television room, enhanced with a monumental fireplace, also in good working order, tapestry wallcoverings and indoor shutters.
The first floor is reached via a stone stairway, featuring two wide, intermediate landings lined with cupboards. The floors in the bedrooms and the corridors are covered with parquet flooring, often laid in a ladder pattern and studded.
A hall area on the west side leads, initially, to a north-facing bedroom and then to a south-facing bedroom as well as to a shower room, with a toilet.
A long corridor set at right angles on the east side features fanlights providing indirect light. It leads to three south-facing bedrooms with views over the garden and the surrounding countryside. There is also a bedroom on the north side as well as another, with its own shower room and a view over the topiary boxwood, on the east side. Lastly, on the north side, a communal bathroom with a toilet features a bull’s eye window and a floor laid with small terracotta tiles, inlaid with oak wood decoration.
This level could be completely converted courtesy of its high trusses. Easily reached via a wide wooden stairway, it comprises two vast areas with old wooden flooring.
Under the study is an old vaulted cellar with a packed mud floor, reached via a stone stairway.
A second cellar is a small packed mud area under the main stairway.
Spanning two levels, it could be used as a workshop or storage space.
Recently constructed, it can be used for storing a small boat, a ride-on mower, bicycles and garden furniture.
Once through the gates, feelings of seclusion and well-being abound. Wooded, immaculately kept parklands, out of sight of onlookers, comprise terracing, summer lounging areas and points of view, reached via alleyways. Light filtering through the branches is everywhere: between the decoratively trimmed bushes, along the forest paths, on the wooden bridge above the water-filled moat reflecting the dovecote, on the terrace between the well and the fountain, on the stone steps and the wrought iron railings as well as on the facade of the impressive manor house.
The refined, comfortable interior, with its large, bright, colourful rooms and views over the meadows, would be ideal as a family home. On the outskirts of a small, lively village in the heart of a tourist region, this balanced property can but provide a pleasant way of life.
|Land registry surface area||3446 m2|
|Main building surface area||378 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||7|
Jonathan Barbot +33 1 42 84 80 85
NB: The above information is not only the result of our visit to the property; it is also based on information provided by the current owner. It is by no means comprehensive or strictly accurate especially where surface areas and construction dates are concerned. We cannot, therefore, be held liable for any misrepresentation.