in more than 2 ha of parklands, 30 minutes from Périgueux
Set between Aubeterre-sur-Dronne and Brantôme, two of France’s most beautiful villages, the Périgord-Ribéracois area has undulating, verdant countryside, where multi-coloured fields alternate with mills, Romanesque churches, streams and woods. The building heritage was constructed using the local white limestone that makes it extremely luminous. This rural land is crossed by a river, classified for the quality of its water, that English writer, Edward-Harrison-Barker, followed on foot and canoe in the 19th century. A journey that was to be related in his book entitled “Two Summers in Guyenne”. Local shops are to be found less than 15 minutes away in the town of Ribérac. Bordeaux can be reached by motorway in less than 1¾ hours and Angoulême TGV train station is about an hour’s drive away.
The fortified farm
This building is constructed from quarry stone blocks, enhanced with exposed dressed stone. Sometimes fully covered with earth rendering and sometimes rendered so as to leave the stone exposed, its elegance probably comes from its dissymmetry. The gently-sloping, hip roof, covered with Roman tiles, features a section that is slightly out of line. Higher than the rest, it is decorated with a cornice and topped with two shed dormers.
The interior courtyard facade is characterised by a stone “bolet”, with a sculpted pillar, a sink and a solid guardrail, topped with a moulded sill, a sign of wealth in comparison to those made of wood. This covered porch, typical of local houses, is on a level with the first floor of the house and provides access inside. Reached via a masonry stone stairway going up alongside the house, this terrace is covered by an extension of the roof.
Near to the porchway, a wooden French window, with numerous small panes, opens into a vast kitchen, with a stone floor and a French ceiling. The wall corresponding to the gable features a window, looking out on to the fishpond. A round stone recipient, of monumental proportions, stands on the floor under said window. Opposite, a fireplace has a raised hearth to leave room for storing wood. This through room also features another French window, opening on to the north terrace. All the openings are arched. An adjoining room is used as a dining room, with a lounge near to a sculpted fireplace. The walls are whitewashed and the spaces between the joists lined with studded fabric. Two French windows respectively open into the interior courtyard and on to the north terrace. The following room, which could be used as a games room, provides access to a vestibule under the “bolet”, opening into the interior courtyard with a toilet, a wine cellar with a gravel floor, and a laundry room followed by a boiler room. A stone stairway, with a double handrail, was recently constructed against the north wall. It houses a cupboard.
The north section of this level has the same layout as the first floor, with three adjoining, through rooms. The “bolet” and the games room stairway both provide access to an intermediary room, under the roofing framework. The exposed, quarry stone walls, feature traditional pointing, and the floor is paved with stone tiles. A double “potager” (a secondary hearth where soups and other previously prepared dishes are cooked on embers) adjoins a rustic, stone and wood fireplace. With wide strip pattern parquet flooring that continues into the following room, a large library is laid out under the sloping roof and exposed roofing framework. A finely sculpted fireplace faces a load-bearing wall, completely covered with a built-in shelf unit and its ladder. Double central doors lead to the next room. Courtesy of its location next to the gable wall, the main bedroom is illuminated via three windows, the craftsmanship of their wooden frames is worthy of note. The fourth wall is fully lined, from the floor up to the French ceiling, with panelling. This wall includes a concealed entrance door, cupboards, a fireplace, a toilet and a private stairway. The south section comprises a bedroom, enhanced with a sculpted, white stone fireplace and a bull’s eye window above the bed as well as a bathroom, with a shower and a toilet. And lastly, a vestibule, with a spiral stairway, provides access to the garden level near the dovecote.
The stairway in the south vestibule leads to a bedroom, followed by a dressing room in the attic space. The stairway in the master bedroom on the north side, makes it possible to reach a large bathroom, with a separate shower, laid out under the roofing framework.
The many outbuildings, all in a very good state of repair, form an interior courtyard, divided into various terraces, covered with gravel or flowers. Both barns still exude all of their authenticity, neither has undergone any interior conversion works.
The lower section of this dovecote comprises a bakery, whilst its top room could be used as a bedroom. The stone perches probably replaced the original wooden ones.
Installed in the dovecote, this bread oven is in a good state of repair.
Featuring a bell and topped with a weathervane, it closes the interior courtyard by linking the gable wall of the farm building to the bigger barn.
The swiming pool
This swimming pool dominates the nuisance-free valley. An L-shaped, blue-coloured pool, spanning approx. 6x12 m, it is surrounded by a terrace, protected by a hedge and the walls of the outbuildings.
This is used as a covered passageway to get to the swimming pool as well as a summer kitchen and relaxation area, with a Jacuzzi.
This water well is in the interior courtyard, on the edge of the flower-filled, terraced garden.
The two old cowsheds, which form the interior courtyard between the small barn and the covered passageway, are now used as storage areas.
Under a gable roof, this barn features two sets of carriage doors, positioned opposite one another in the long sides, and two smaller doors at each end of the courtyard side. It could also be used as a garage. A shed adjoins its gable end, forming a pedestrian passageway to the exterior garden and the swimming pool.
This barn differs from the first by its double cornice and its low, hip roof, predominantly covered with Roman tiles, but featuring flat tiles on the gable ends.
In a natural setting with a 360° view, in the midst of a valley that red and roe deer consider home, this property is a protective, private bubble where home comforts have been rightfully blended with the authenticity of these restored buildings. It is a kindly fortress, the outbuildings of which are the ramparts that future owners will have free rein to convert in keeping with their project, whatever it might be. A reasonably-sized, welcoming home, where every room has its own character, revealing architectural features to be admired: outstanding heritage that should be respected and preserved.
|Land registry surface area||2 ha 15 a 63 ca|
|Main building surface area||360 m2|
|Outbuilding surface area||330 m2|
|Number of bedrooms||3|
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.