12th century feudal castle undergoing total restoration since 1969, with volunteers and professionals at the initiative of Françoise and Pierre Pottier.
The Ventadour castle stands on the Rolandy Rock, a 70m high spur above the confluence of the rivers Ardèche and Fontaulière, in the commune of Meyras.
Its original name is “Meyras Castle”. He took in the 19th century the name of one of the most powerful families the “Dukes of Ventadour” who last inhabited it.
It was dismantled brutally in the 1700s surely to avoid serving as a refuge for armed bands hostile to the king, after the revocation of the Edict of Nantes.
Until the Revolution, it will degrade slowly. It will be sold at this time as national property and will serve as a stone quarry, like many other monuments. Then will begin a long agony.
In 1968, Pierre Pottier, a former factory worker from Aisne, falls in love with Ventadour.
With the amount of a prize “Masterpieces in danger” (the famous TV show), he acquires the castle to restore it and plans to make it a cultural and educational place dedicated to the Middle Ages, to architecture, stone crafts …
All that remained were ruins invaded by devouring vegetation. An association is created to save and rebuild it. A youth project is set up every summer …
This is the beginning of a great adventure that we invite you to visit …
Since 1969 nearly 7000 volunteers have participated in the restitution, which is currently more than 4 / 5ths. Many young people have found here their vocation as an architect, engineer in public works, or companions of duty in frame and cut stone.
From 01/07 to 30/09, daily.
|Adult: 5 €.|
|Free entry for children < 12 years.|