A 14th century church
between the Causses and the Cévennes regions
, AVEYRON midi-pyrenees FR

Location

This edifice dominates the picturesque square of a village, rich in building and environmental heritage. It is 100 km from Montpellier, 30 km from Millau (the A75 motorway is 10 km away), between the Grands-Causses Regional Nature Park and the Cévennes mountains.

Description

Dedicated to St Jacques, this edifice was built in the 14th century as the main parish church. However, the French Revolution and its consequences were to force the congregation to choose between preserving this religious building or consecrating the 12th century chapel of the then evicted Benedictine monks. General opinion led to the adoption of the Romanesque building to the detriment of the one available for purchase. Consequently, far from its original purpose, this church was transformed into a sheepfold and then into a garage at the beginning of the 19th century.
This edifice is interesting from numerous architectural points of view.
Firstly, its construction which was inspired by the local Causses buildings. This solid limestone structure, topped with a low, “lauze” stone slab roof, was obviously built in line with regional building methods.
Then, there is the subtle balance between the rusticity of the outside and the richness of the inside. This forum is of a superb flamboyant gothic style: the crossed ribs and the capitals are adorned with finely wrought foliated scrolls, the windows have undergone a rich and inspired treatment, the choir featured a sculpted tetramorph with corbelling, in which it is still possible to admire the delicacy of its angel (St Mathew). Traces of polychromy, probably more advanced and dating from the Renaissance period, are also still visible, notably in a particularly outstanding chessboard pattern fresco that has avoided the layers of a rural 19th century.
The addition of extensive flooring supported by large stone arches at the beginning of the 19th century was intended to be used as part of the church’s new function. It, nevertheless, provides an unhoped-for view of the vaults and, why not, conversion possibilities.

Our opinion

It is never easy to put a sacred building up for sale. Our company, with its strong catholic foundations, might not fervently proclaim its sacred history, but it does unceremoniously come to mind on this occasion. So saying, from this history we also retain our invaluable building heritage and what can we do with our deconsecrated churches other than to breathe new life into them using the means imposed on us by our new secular foundations.
The church in question was “lucky” enough to be deconsecrated, not because of a lack of interest in modern-day religion, but because of the folly of man and a tough, foolish social transformation. Consequently, this is a place where instead of an inviolate and possibly impregnable sacredness, it is possible to appreciate an exemplary heritage which is but waiting to savour its new lease on life, whatever form that may take.

Exclusive sale

310 000 €
Fees at the Vendor’s expense


See the fee rates

Reference 117271

Land registry surface area 671 m2
Main building surface area 600 m2 au sol m2
Number of bedrooms 0

Consultant
Gard


Regis Senseby +33 1 42 84 80 85

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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.

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