Monday Window: Montrol-Sénard

This exceptionally lustrous stained glass window can be found in the old church (parts dating back to the 11th century) in the village of Montrol-Sénard.

#MondayWindow 20 January 2020

On the hotplate

In the old cafe at the rural museum in Montrol-Sénard there’s a wood-burning stove range. This is one of the hotplates.

Cee’s B;ack & White Photo Challenge: Geometric Shapes

Hot Dinners

In the schoolroom of the living museum of rural life at nearby Montrol-Sénard you can still see these cooking pots, in which the pupils would bring their lunches from home, sitting them on top of the stove to keep warm.

Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge 18 January 2018

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Broken

Still away from base, so for Frank’s Tuesday Photo Challenge this week it’s another dig into the archives to match his theme of ‘Broken’.

I must say, this is one of my favourite photos – a broken cartwheel seen through the window of the blacksmith’s shop in the nearby ‘living museum’ village of Montrol-Sénard. The blurring of the ancient glass and the spiders’ webs gives the image an other-worldly atmosphere.

Tuesday Photo Challenge: Broken

Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage

We live in a very rural part of France, where agriculture remains a crucial element of the local economy.

As most farms remain family businesses, they are typically much smaller than the vast agri-industrial enterprises to be found elsewhere. Modern methods are used, of course (nobody uses a pair of horses for tilling any more, apart from at the annual ploughing competition), but there is still plenty of heritage, in the sense of evidence of the way things used to be done.

In particular, there is the open-air museum of rural life at nearby Montrol-Sénard, which includes this barn, still containing old cattle byres. There were some just like these in our own barn when we bought it, but they were too far gone and disappeared during the restoration process.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Heritage

Macro Moments Week 26: Chardon Marie

We’ve all seen Milk Thistle extract in health shops – it’s supposed to be good for the liver – but it’s much less common to see the actual plant that it’s extracted from. As the name suggests, it’s a variety of thistle (the French name is Chardon Marie) that grows to quite a height. This one was a good seven feet tall.

I found this example, which had obviously just released its seeds, in a herb garden in the nearby village of Montrol-Sénard.


Nikon D800 with Nikkor 24-70mm ƒ2.8 lens at 58mm. 1/000 at ƒ5.6 ISO 250. Cropped and edited in Lightroom.

Macro Moments Week 26

Tuesdays of Texture: Clogs

This image from the workshop of the local clogmaker in nearby Montrol-Sénard, a living museum of rural life, certainly displays some very interesting textures.


It resonates particularly for me, because what is now the entrance hall of our home was once the atelier of the local sabotier.

Although we have had it done up a bit:


Tuesdays of Texture: Week 43

Weekly Photo Challenge: Nostalgia

Nostalgia? It ain’t what it used to be, is it?

The obvious temptation is to respond to this week’s WordPress Photo Challenge by pulling something quaint or sentimental out of the archives. There’s nothing wrong with that, of course, but as a counterpoint to the rose-tinted glow of memory I thought I would post this less cosy image.

The ‘living museum’  that is the nearby village of Montrol-Sénard has many features that portray a romanticised version of local life a hundred and more years ago. However, it also has this perhaps rather more realistic illustration of the way things were.

It’s a bedroom for a farm worker: a small, rough-made bed, a lumpy, dirty straw mattress and a pair of clogs (note the straw lining: no expensive luxuries like socks). When you see an example of the verité like this it’s possible to understand why the locals seem remarkably unsentimental about their comparatively recent history.


Weekly Photo Challenge: Nostalgia

Thursday Doors: Montrol-Senard (encore)

My previous post of a door in Montrol-Sénard was a bit- well, edgy. However, here are some more comfortingly conventional offerings from this ‘living museum’ village a few miles from here:


although his one is on the upper story, which could make cleaning the step a little problematic:



Thursday Doors 21 July 2016

Steps in sepia

Sepia seems to me to work better than conventional black & white in these pictures: the first of an old set of steps leading up to a cobbled square in the town of Saint-Emilion in the Bordeaux region:


and this from Montrol-Sénard:


Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge: Steps