Sunday, March 5, 2017

France, Loire Valley - Château de Chaumont-sur-Loire V (The Stables)

The Chateau de Chaumont-sur-Loire is renowned for its stables, which highly contributed to its reputation.

In 1877, the De Broglie family entrusted the famous architect Paul-Ernest Sanson with designing the stables, 
which had to be the most sumptuous and modern in all Europe.

Sanson opted for a brick and stone ensemble. 
It includes separate stalls for the half-bred and thoroughbred stallions, 
the kitchen, the tack room, the shed for horse-drawn carriages and the pony stable.

Chaumont’s stables are set around two communicating courtyards of unequal size, 
the larger for use by the lord and lady of the estate and the smaller reserved for their guests. 
The great courtyard is most certainly spacious enough to have accommodated the many horses 
and horse-drawn vehicles that made use of it, 
as well as the staff who manned it. 

The stables operated round the clock, with a large number of servants constantly in attendance. 
Twenty or so staff (outriders, coachmen, footmen, stable-boys, postilions and grooms) 
carried out their various tasks under the eye of the head coachman, who managed the stables.

The buildings’ amazing peculiarity is that, in 1906, they were fitted with electricity and central heating.

It was transformed into an indoor riding school for the children of the Chateau of Chaumont-sur-Loire during the 19th century.

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