When we bought our French house (aka ‘Brokedown Palace’), this is the state that the barn was in. Those bales of rotting hay were all that were holding up not only the roof (such as it was), but pretty much the entire edifice. Since part of the bâtiment belongs to our neighbour, getting it fixed was something of a priority. It cost about as much as we originally paid for the house and land in the first place.
This is a view of the staircase that was in our house just after we bought it. Originally, it was boxed in, which made the room – which is north-facing – even darker. However, Madame (with no little relish, it must be said) took a jemmy to it and exposed the original. It had to go however, as it was dangerously rickety.
Nonetheless it is a set of steps to meet this week’s challenge theme and, particularly in monochrome, the strong diagonals make for an interesting image.
This huge house is located right in the centre of the village of Mézierès-sur-Issoire. It has lain empty and neglected for as long as anyone can remember, or so it seems. However, when it came on the market a few months ago it was snapped up very quickly. Admittedly it was on offer at a knockdown price, but by all accounts there is a huge amount of restoration to be done. It certainly looks like it, especially in this sepia-tinted image.
This week we’re not just close to home; we’re at home. We bought what you could reasonably describe as a ‘doer-upper’ back in 2005. It was, as the agent’s particulars stated, in trés mauvais état – a very bad state.
This was the back door leading into what is now the kitchen:
Inside there was a tree growing out of the wall where the log-burning stove now sits. The whole interior has been effectively rubbed out and started again. We’ve also made a few changes to the exterior: