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The afternoon in the castle of Coudray-Salbart

Family Jennifer - conseillère en séjours By Jennifer - conseillère en séjours, the 04 May 2018

It is told that the fairy Mélusine would be at the origin of the construction of this beautiful medieval fortress raised to the XIIIth century by the Lords of Parthenay thanks to Jean Sans terre's financial support, the king of England.

Lover of old stones and passionate about medieval architecture to have worked in several castles of this type, in particular Tiffauges in Vendée, saint-Suzanne in Mayenne and Château-Gaillard in Eure, I take advantage of a very beautiful day of April to leave this time to the discovery of the history of Coudray-Salbart.

My 4-year-old son will accompany me during this visit and for all the small families with holidays, I have to say that mine stood out enchanted, called out(enchanted, questioned), curious and full of energy. Knight's attractive diploma was put back to him at the exit of our walk. I can only advise you this visit with your small adventurers or adventuresses. Of what to arouse future vocations or maybe to build a bow and arrows back home and to become a real archer!

My visit begins with a path accessible on foot which allows to discover the building due to its outsides and to take advantage so completely of its characteristic defensive architecture of the medieval castles of the reign of Plantagenêt, kings of England. Thick bulwarks testify of tempestuous past. The still present vestiges today allow us to understand its strategic positioning. The fortress checked the passage on Sèvre Niortaise and nearby lands. Six towers flanked along bulwarks strengthen the defensive character of the military work.

The wide open eyes, our feet tumble down with spirit the path. We look forward to going into this castle so that it delivers us a part of its secrets. We enter by the traditional barbican and arrive in the farmyard, the vast space closed by a rampart where lived the majority of the inhabitants of the castle (soldiers, servants, pilgrims of passage). Place of life, we found stables, forge, oven, accommodation of the soldiers there and the chapel castrale. It seems that we raised here, under the drawbridge, " one thousand connils " (many rabbits).

Here I am in the location of the former drawbridge and I make a commitment in one of the first towers that said by Bois-Berthier. I discover a square room, bent in broken cradle, endowed with a fireplace. On the first floor, another octagonal room comes to light bent in diagonal ribs.

I take then the direction of the tower double. Massive tower in almond, it possesses three levels. You can discover it three niches of archères extremely deep.

Let us continue towards the tower Saint Michel. Of this small tower, it was easy to watch the possible advances of the aggressor.

Here we are arrived in the Big Tower. It it it is more impressive down from the 40 meters and from its 12-16 meters in diameters. It is a real donjon with its big square reception hall.

The girdle of circulation, corridor getting a fast circulation of the soldiers towards all the points of the castle, contain crossbowwomen. In Coudray-Salbart, it would be, it seems, unique in France in a castle of the XIIIth century! We can imagine that the idea is returned by the crusades.

I shall have to browse the tower of the Mill and the tower of Portal, where we find the winch there which served to maneuver the drawbridge.

One hour and a half after our entrance, here we are in the term of this free and surprising visit. I shall naturally be allowed try to stroll again during the Medieval of Maïus there where the castle livens up from 19 till 21 May: danseries, tales, show of medieval falconry, criminal investigation …

Good visit in the castle of Coudray-Salbart!



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