The Good Life France Magazine

The Good Life France Magazine brings you the best of France - inspirational and exclusive features, fabulous photos, mouth-watering recipes, tips, guides, ideas and much more...

Published by the award winning team at The Good Life France

1 year ago

Issue No. 12

Sensational cities to tiny villages, food and wine, culture and heritage. Champagne, an aristocratic saffron grower, Anger, Montparnasse, Morzeine, Carol Drinkwater shares her passion for France. Gorgeous photos and fabulous features will transport you to the heart of France in this brilliant, free magazine...

What to see close to

What to see close to Langres Chateau de Pailly Langres today is a sleepy sort of a town where people are friendly and say hello to strangers – it wasn’t always so. The original Chateau de Pailly which was built in the 11th century was destroyed by the people of Langres in retaliation for the Burgundian owner’s support of the English in the 100 years war. English guide Toni who volunteers at the Chateau is happy to show visitors round the “new” chateau which was rebuilt in the 1400s by the de Saulx family. It has a fascinating history though the facts are a little sketchy on account of the documents about this lovely stone castle being destroyed in a fire in Langres in 1892. Useless fact fans will appreciate knowing that one time owner Gaspard de Saulx, known for his excessive persecution of Protestants in France appeared in British TV series Doctor Who. Well, not him, actor André Morell played him in the 1966 serial “The Massacre of St Bartholomew’s Eve” in which Gaspard played a role. Sadly, if you’re keen to watch – no known footage of the serial featuring William Hartnell as the Doctor, and Peter Purves as his able assistant, is available. It was Gaspard de Saulx who also gave the castle its Renaissance upgrade making it one of the finest examples of its kind in France.

Gaspard de Saulx (1509– 1575) was featured in a During the French Revolution, the façade of the castle was defaced, later it was used as a school for local children and then in the 1950s the family who owned it but didn’t really rate it that much sold it to an insurance company who left it to rot as they just wanted the land that came with it. By the time the state stepped in, the chateau was in a terrible state. ornately painted ceiling and carved fire places and a life-sized portrait of a rather stern looking Gaspard staring at you. The gardens are being restored and are lovely to wander in and this chateau is embracing its resurrection with lots of events in the summer. It has these days found love from local volunteers and that’s essential because the funds are just not there to restore it. One of them, Georgette, remembers visiting the chapel there in the 1950s but says that the key has been lost, the stairs have rotted and no one has been in there for at least 50 years. I tried to persuade them to fetch me a ladder but they wouldn’t! Inside, the castle sometimes resembles a mysterious medieval building site. Slowly the volunteers are bringing it back to life but it's a huge job. One of the rooms is complete - and completely stunning. Popping on plastic sliperettes to protect the ancient wooden floor (and polish it at the same time) you enter a vast room with Website: Chateau de Pailly

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