an hour away from Lille, Belgium and England
In the hinterland of the “Côte d’Opale” (coastline between Calais and Boulogne-sur-Mer), in the heart of France’s most northern Regional Nature Park.
Bridges, mills, farms with square courtyards, wayside crosses, chapels, oratories, covered wells, dovecotes and threshing sheds, all bearing specific witness to regional history, are dotted about here and there in undulating cuesta relief, grassy and wooded land between French bocage and sloping countryside.
On the outskirts of a village, less than 30 minutes from two ports and beaches, just a stone’s throw from the Channel Tunnel and England.
A little known particularity is that coal was mined here on a small-scale from the late 17th century through until the middle of the 20th century. The coal was used by the local glassworks.
Another local resource is the marble quarries, where generations of entire families have worked as stone and marble cutters and polishers. The result is an extremely beautiful grey-beige or bluish marble used the world over for decorating prestigious buildings.
The local heritage which includes the hermitage also comprises a chateau, built on the site of an old construction destroyed by the English, a church, a Dominican house and a monastery.
The monastery, no doubt one of the biggest properties in the village, was founded in the middle of the 19th century.
The residence was built for a count towards the middle of the 18th century. A young Parisian lady, who had bought it, donated it to an institution. A few members of a religious order from Belgium consequently took possession and it became a monastery.
The construction was improved at the beginning of the 19th century. Iron gates were installed at the entrance and a chapel was built and then blessed by the Bishop of Arras in the middle of the century.
The monks were exiled and the monastery abandoned at the beginning of the 20th century, before reopening thirty or so years later as an orphanage. It then became a noviciate.
Requisitioned and evacuated during the war, the monastery was closed for good in the middle of the 20th century.
The property has since been a children’s holiday camp, a school for young girls, a retirement home and lastly a children’s home.
Major conversion and renovation works were carried out at the end of the 20th century, bringing the house in line with current day standards as well as completely redoing the roofs, including that of the chapel.
This large, main building now spans a total of almost 600 m².
The ground floor comprises ten rooms that include a vast reception room, a kitchen, two storerooms, a storage area as well as bathroom and toilet facilities.
The first floor includes seventeen bedrooms, three of which are large, a meeting room as well as bathroom and toilet facilities.
On the top floor are a vast room, bathroom and toilet facilities as well as two large attics.
In the basement are two cellars and a fruit storeroom.
There is an additional, two-storey side building, spanning more than 150 m², that is used as living accommodation and an outbuilding, a small house spanning almost 60 m² and a chapel.
Inside this chapel, a large bell bears an engraved text mentioning the name of its sponsors and its blessing by the bishop.
The inside of this religious edifice contains numerous original and astonishing decors and features, predominantly in the choir. There is a small sacristy on the side.
There are more outbuildings.
The metal entrance gates open into a carpark.
Surrounding the buildings is a vast garden that spans more than 6,000 m². It comprises a grassland section, an orchard and a small old vegetable garden.
At the end is an unobstructed view of the surroundings that stretches to the horizon.
This property above all has the benefit of an outstanding setting and location, on the outskirts of a pleasant village and in peaceful countryside. It stands not far from the sea, in the heart of a region, through which pass the flyways of migrating birds, abounding not only in sea air but also in unspoilt hinterland. Its geographical location between Great Britain and the Benelux countries is another interesting asset.
Enhanced by its chapel, it forms a relatively original property, the features of which are in a good state of repair. It has great potential and numerous possibilities, courtesy of its extensive living space, beginning with all forms of accommodation.
|Land registry surface area||6030 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||11|
|Main building surface area||590 m2|
|Outbuilding surface area||940 m2|
Bruno Van Montagu +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.