History of the house «Ombre du tilleul»
A little history…
In the Middle Ages, Richebourg was an important stronghold with a defensive role, as evidenced by the 12th-century motte feudale next to the present castle, itself built on the site of a destroyed feudal castle.
Château de Richebourg, dating from the 13th to 16th centuries, was once the residence of the Seigneur de Richebourg, with an immense park and vast tracts of land, both farmed and grassland. Since 1978, the château has been home to the Fondation Mallet, a medical and social center for the integration of disabled people and a functional rehabilitation center.
Legend has it that rue St Georges was a stagecoach route, and that the coachmen used to stop off at the inn on rue St Georges.
Here, at n°19, were the stables, and the house on your left, facing the street, served as an inn (n°21). The evolution of the village and the construction of Route 983 by Napoleon changed the purpose of this house.
After the Second World War, it was owned by florists based in Paris. The property then passed through a succession of owners before being acquired in 2001 by the current owners, Mr. and Mrs. Lelièvre, garden center and pet shop owners on rue de l’enclos in Houdan.
Me, house at 19 rue St Georges
When you walk through the front door, you appreciate the work of local craftsmen who have respected the soul of the house… The Burgundy stone floor you’ll walk on on the ground floor, the reconstituted stone staircase, known as the “central core staircase”, was made by a craftsman from Havelu (a village 15 km away in the neighbouring Eure et Loire department), and the guardhouse was made by a blacksmith from Bourdonné, a village 15 km away (in the Yvelines department).
In the living room, the ceiling reinforcement beams originate from a family barn in Normandy.
The fireplace is not period, but was worked by a master stonemason, also in Normandy, according to the sketches of Véronique Lelièvre, the current owner.
The ground-floor bedroom retains its original beams and access door. The other doors in the house were gleaned by Véronique.
The all-oak kitchen was built by a cabinetmaker from Eure et Loire, located in Berchères sur Vesgre, in his capacity as a Compagnon du devoir, a professional association of master craftsmen. This craftsman also made the old-fashioned oak floor on hourdis, which forms the landing on the 1st floor.
The “exploded mosaic” tiles in the middle green room are original.
The other parquet and tiles have been installed in harmony with the various decorative elements.
As for the billiard table, it comes from an old café in Houdan, where it was used by many inveterate players until “noon”.
While respecting the “longère” style of my origins, certain interior walls were reinforced or even demolished to maximise the amount of light coming in from outside.
This architectural work was also carried out by a craftsman mason from Bourdonné, as was the old “Richebourg” tile roof by a roofer from Houdan.
The stone on my facade was given a new lustre by the same Bourdonné craftsman, to whom I pay tribute.
A serene climate
In addition to the historical aspect and the personification of the house described above, it is also necessary to highlight the comfort of the house and its reassuring atmosphere.
Like the daily conveniences that make use of certain new technologies, such as servo-controlled underfloor heating, which provides a soft sensation added to a beautiful fireplace, a well-equipped kitchen-dining room, network access via a solid wifi throughout the house, a large billiard room upstairs all in wood and a small digital games room.
Then there are the qualities of tranquility and luminosity, thanks to hand-crafted joinery, thick walls that in no way weigh down the airy spaces with their wide openings, and the logic of coherent successions from room to room, allowing you to appreciate the location of this house in a serene neighborhood.
The south-south-west exposure allows us to enjoy the garden in front of a very wide terrace, and sunny days sheltered from any vis-à-vis or untimely noise.
As a result of this ideal layout, we’ve developed an awareness of the coherence of the spaces inside the house, and are now able to meet the challenge of “living together” as a family, while respecting the privacy and calm of each individual.
We, the owners
For over 10 years, we’ve enjoyed the serenity of this peaceful garden, filled with birdsong, hedgehogs and squirrels looking for berries in autumn.
We have only one wish: that this place once again vibrates with laughter and shared family and friendly moments, as it always has.
To find out more about the history of the “old” part of Richebourg, from Rue St Georges to Rue de la Croix de Sault, visit the «Richebourg Patrimoine et Nature» (RPN) website, a publication written by enthusiasts whose love of heritage I have the honor of sharing.