The Story of 'L'Ancienne Mairie'

We have always loved France having both lived in different parts of the country during our time at university and after leaving our careers as teachers in the UK, we decided to establish a B&B with tables d'hôtes (meals for guests) in the Aude/Ariege area. We wanted to create a peaceful setting for people to come and enjoy a little taste of French lifestyle whilst being within a short driving distance of major attractions like Carcassonne and Toulouse as well as the spectacular Pyrenees. 

We fell in love with the house and the setting the moment we saw it and spent six months renovating and improving the upstairs to provide 3 ensuite rooms for guests. The downstairs area provides our living accommodation as well as the dining area for breakfast and evening meals. The dining area/kitchen opens out onto a raised garden overlooking the fields and hills to the south of the village. There is also a large vegetable plot behind the new mairie/salle des fêtes which depending on the vagaries of the weather can provide a wide variety of fruit and vegetables.

The house was built in 1777 by a member of the aristocracy and served as the mairie (village hall) from soon after the revolution (1789). Last century the house was also the school and the dining area is where the classroom once was and where some of the current residents of the village were taught. The school was used up until 1964 and the house remained the mairie until 2010 when the new mairie and salle des fêtes was built.