THE FAMILY & THE CHATEAU
We are a family of five (our youngest was born here) and have been living in France for fourteen years. We moved from London because we wanted our children to grow up in a more natural environment and know a sense of community. We found in the Limousin region: a beautiful setting, warm people and a Château we fell in love with!
We completely renovated both the Château and the gites (Patrick did most of the work himself) and now run the Château as a chambres d’hôtes and the gites are holiday accommodation, all set in an 86 acre park. We run a large vegetable garden and orchard and try to supply the Château with as much of our own produce as possible. We have horses, sheep, cows, and a cat, as well as lots of wildlife on the property.
Patrick still practices as a lawyer from home, and Colette runs the gardens and does the catering for the Château which provides tables d’hôtes. We both love the opportunity to meet people that the Château and gites give us, and enjoy introducing guests to this fantastic region.
THE AREA - LIMOUSIN
The leaf-shaped region of France, the Limousin, is little-known, even amongst the French. In the past, people rushed through, on their way down South to jostle amongst the throngs of tourists and swim in the crowded waters of the Med. Now people who would like to experience some of the “real” France are beginning to discover a more interesting destination for their holidays.
The Limousin offers gorgeous countryside, with huge vistas of sweeping valleys, impressive hills, gurgling streams and the deep blue waters of lakes, large and small. There are beautiful pristine lakes to swim, boat or fish in, trails to hike or ride with dolmens and menhirs, ancient ruins and chateaux and churches to admire. The Seasons are all beautiful here, and we experience wild flower-filled Springs, hot Summers and stunning Autumns with grand brushstrokes of colour everywhere. Winter is cold with crystal blue skies and sparking frosts.
The Limousin is filled with history, even the very beginnings of mankind – with Lascaux only an hour and a half away, and Limoges a great Roman city – the Collesium (sadly destroyed by time) once seated a staggering 20,000 people. The area continued to be of strategic value during the Middle Ages and saw the epic struggle for the English and French crowns and the death of the great King Richard the Lionheart at Chaluus. Following the discovery of Kaolin, Limoges thrived with porcelain and it’s fame for stained glass and enamel work (the “Arts of Fire”), and continues to be an affluent city, with great restaurants and shopping.
We also enjoy a strong reputation for the great food of the area. With responsible farming methods widely used here and many small farmers producing different cheeses, fruits and vegetables the area is a haven for people who love food and respect the environment.