This impressive property used to gather two separate farming activities, witnesses of the rich agricultural past of the Limousin region: a cattle and sheep farm, as well as a flour mill. While these activities might not be able to exist the way they once did, perhaps the elements that make them up can be used to create a new rewarding activity. This architectural heritage, as it was created with its specific know-how, is of priceless value and you are given the opportunity here to use it and give it a new lease of life!
The dwellingsThe presence of the two adjoining houses is explained by the fact that two parts of the same family lived side by side in their respective professional activity.
The first house was built at the beginning of the 20th Century in a village house style, rather than that of the traditional limousine farmhouse. They had more spacious rooms, larger openings, a more imposing structure. This house has four bedrooms, its living area is approximately 1346ft² and comprises on the ground floor of the main entrance on the West-facing facade, opening onto a small landing (65ft²) with stairs to the cellar located under part of the kitchen and stairs going to the upper floors. On the left of the entrance, a spacious kitchen (183ft²) with a wide fireplace in which the ubiquitous wood-burning cooker stands. A concrete joist, visible in the kitchen and the adjoining dining room, runs through the central part of the house to allow for the load-bearing walls to be removed and to increase the size of the original rooms. Behind the kitchen, a laundry room (65ft²) with a hot water tank and fitted cupboards, a shower room, and a separate toilet (5m²). Those rooms have been renovated more recently (in the 2000’s), by incorporating a modern shower cubicle and a vanity unit. The dining room can be reached from the entrance landing on the right or from the kitchen. It is a good size (334ft²) with fitted cupboards and runs across the building from East to West. It is erected on a partial crawl space over a concrete block and beam floor.
On the first floor, a landing (86ft²) leads to a front balcony, four bedrooms (108ft², 129ft² and 2x140ft²) and a bathroom with a WC (54ft²), formerly a child's bedroom. A closed staircase leads up to the attic that is a nice convertible space of over 431ft². Part of the slate roof will have to be changed (hooks and slats in particular) and the room insulated on the ground if you do not want to make it habitable.
The single garage / boiler room (409ft²) is on the ground floor, in an annex located in between the two houses. At the other end of the garage, the old bread oven is still present, but its fireplace is used for the central heating on wood or oil. The two boilers are placed in front of the oven with the oil tank on the side. Only the oil boiler is currently connected to the chimney flue.
The second house was built in the 1970’s, with rendered concrete blocks, against the old stone house, of which the garage / boiler room mentioned above was part. Unlike the other house, this one has a ground floor consisting of a cellar and a utility room. The first living floor lies above in line with the 1st floor of its neighbour. It is accessed via an external staircase covered by a canopy. The entrance is through a narrow corridor (75ft²). There is a separate toilet (10ft²) at the end of the entrance corridor. To the right of the entrance, a fitted kitchen (129ft²) and a bedroom (118ft²) next to it. Separating these two rooms from the living room (248ft²) at the rear of the house, a load-bearing wall supports the storage attic’s concrete floor located above. The living room has a French window opening onto a concrete floored terrace on the East-facing side. The rear of the second house is partly built against the bank and the land extends the terrace and goes up towards the meadows that are part of the property.
To the left of the entrance, a landing (108ft²) leads to the bathroom (43ft²) with an internal window (in the external wall before the second house was built). To the left of the landing, two bedrooms (97ft² & 118ft²) on solid chestnut floors and with fitted wardrobes. On the second floor, the attic has been converted with: a landing (65ft²) leading to an office (43ft²) with a roof window and a bedroom (118ft²) also with a Velux.
As far as renovation work is concerned, you must plan for a general modernization, especially in the older house, of the interior decoration, plumbing, electricity, insulation, and the upgrading of the septic tank.
The outbuildings A tarmacked courtyard separates the houses from the flour mill just opposite. It is a large, exposed stone building over 4 floors, incorporating storage spaces (old grain silos) and the turbines supplying power to the flour mills. There is a garage and a storage attic. Attached to the flour mill, various cowsheds, pigsties, an open barn of 1076ft² of floor space with stables below.
Another garage opposite, with a cellar dug into the ground. A large workshop. Two sheepfolds and a woodshed. Next to the second house, a small courtyard with a brick barbecue, a henhouse, a tool shed. Some of the roofs contain asbestos cement sheets or slates containing asbestos.
The land Most of it is pasture, part of which lies on either side of a year-round running stream. There is a wooded patch in the middle of one of the meadows. The land is on a more or less pronounced slope (we are in the Limousin, don’t forget!) and runs down towards the stream. The property is fully fenced in with several enclosures (except around the buildings) and is ready to have animals. Part of the land is lined by two small B-roads.
Access and amenities The village in which this property is located has a bar-restaurant, a bread store, petrol station-garage, country bakery, local infant, and primary schools. We are less than 10 minutes from Chamberet with more shops and services. The nearest train station to Limoges or Brive la Gaillarde is a 10-minute drive away. Allow 45 minutes to reach Limoges and less than an hour for its airport.
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The houseinthelimousin.com website is the English-language website of the Agence Franco Hollandaise office. The team consists of the Dutch Inge and Jeroen van der Ziel, Diederik Wallet and the Frenchman Didier Schmitt.