/*** Blog Page Grid Set up***/

Château La Garenne

Last Saturday, Lisa was waiting to pay at the supermarket (OK, it was Lidl) behind a couple checking out. The cashier requested their bank card for payment (it was a Bank Cards only checkout line) and the lady had intended to pay cash – she had a bank card but couldn’t remember her PIN number! So, Good Samaritan Lisa said, I’ll pay for your groceries on my card and you can give me your cash. Problem solved! The lady then said, why don’t you and your husband come and join us for dinner at our château this afternoon?

Well, it’s not every day you get such an invitation! After quickly checking our busy social calendar  Lisa kindly accepted and – needless to say, we were both intrigued and delighted to meet our kind neighbors, and to check out their château.

Who would have thought, and what are the chances? Only the day before we had been to visit Château de Pontécoulant, a French Monument Historique, and only a 20-minute drive from our home. As it turns out, our new friends Stephen and Sue’s château is also just 20 minutes away from us!

Château La Garenne

Château La Garenne

After donning our best smart-casual bibs and tuckers we set off to the town of Aunay Sur Odon in search of Château La Garenne, which we found situated on the outskirts of and set on 50 beautiful rolling acres of Normandie bocage. When Stephen and Sue bought the 18th-century château, it was derelict and in ruins with the roof completely missing and 6’ high brambles covering the property.  It had been vacant for many years.

The farm and acreage that Château La Garenne is situated on were inhabited for centuries before that by Cistercian Monks and on its grounds are buildings which were the residences of Abbots and Bishops, including Bishop Rance, a Grand Master of the Knights Templar. Those former holy residences have been converted into luxury five-star holiday gîtes, lovingly renovated to the highest standard by Sue and Stephen.

The Clarks are busy bees indeed, their 50 acres include barns, outbuildings, and pastures, and they run a stud farm breeding award-winning show Ponies. Neighboring farmers are allowed to graze their cattle on some of the fields and some grow hay which is share-cropped with the gracious landlords.

Not letting any grass grow under their heels, Stephen and Sue go on buying runs twice weekly in search of antique furniture. With all of that going on, they also have 5 pitches on-property for caravans and motor home enthusiasts. Sue serves up afternoon tea, Sunday Roast, and weeknight barbecues.

All in all, we had an amazing experience touring Château La Garenne with its five-star gîtes, its stud farm and fields, and best of all – getting to know our lovely neighbors and new friends, Stephen and Sue.

Check out their Facebook page La Garenne Normandy
For additional images of our visit https://gopro.com/v/Jb0LNaVeXMGb4
To book a gîte at Château La Garenne click here.

The History Update of Château La Garenne
La Garenne means Rabbit Warren, we were told by many, the previous owners had a sense of humour, but we assumed they meant today!!! 20th century? As no wildlife whatsoever, all eaten; gone… so why rabbit warren?

Not 20th century at all, but the original owners the Cistercian Monks, who gave the name to the estate, the Bishop here was also a grandmaster, of the Knights Templar. We were shocked to learn what they achieved in medieval times.

This was the largest, most wealthy estate in Northern France, we were told it was originally in excess of 100 hectares when in fact it was 100,000 plus hectares from Caen to Vire. The estates were all once owned by gentry, knights, earls, grand landowners, all seeking to go to heaven in their last months or days of life, the Cistercian monks were more than happy to trade their powers to guarantee heaven-sent, in exchange for their estates, which they signed over promptly, which in turn was rented, more income, the lands were also sold to bring in more income, monks cared for sheep which were sold, more income, plus they loaned money to anyone who had assets, it was non-stop income.

I asked, how did the monks move the payments without being robbed, their money – in gold, back to Aunay? Simple, the monks relayed small amounts under their cassock, they were known to have nothing, the perfect cover to pass to each other, from any part of Europe to Aunay.

As soon as more info is sent to me, l will keep you posted… You can help, we need more information.

We know Godfrey Dennis was here FOR 49 years – 1439 to 1630. ANY INFORMATION OR HIS FAMILY CREST WOULD BE WELCOME. Students and teachers have access to more history than what’s on the net for us…. help! Who was in charge before him, and after? Bishop Rance, was as a grandmaster, here, he was also head of priory of St. ANNE, Bayeux, Normandy, France, and HQ for the priory of Saint Anne is in Coventry, we have his coat of arms. We would like to find out who else was here, and their history here… thank you.


451 Rue du Courgain, 62340 Campagne-lès-Guînes
07850 511893 or 0776 258 1456


Available for: Motor Home Overnight Parking (no amenities)
Number of Rooms:  N/A
Amenities:  Grounds, close to lively town


I am interested in:

9 + 1 =


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Jul 10, 2020 A Mouthwatering Sharing Board Starter at Chateau de Vaudezert.  Read More

Jul 9, 2020  Young Miss Strawbridge Makes Elderflower ChampagneRead More

Jul 8, 2020  Christmas at Chateau de Lalande?  Read More

Jul 7, 2020  Coming Soon to Chateau de Sauge.  Read More

Jul 6, 2020  The Covid Effect on Chateau Prices.  Read More

Jul 5, 2020  Chateau de Bourneau Floral Decorating Event.  Read More

Jul 4, 2020  Renovating a decaying neoclassical French Chateau is the ultimate dream, right?  Read More

Jul 3, 2020   Abbaye de la Bussiere is Open for Sunday Brunch.  Read More

Jul 2, 2020    Chateaux are opening again for business!  Read More

Jul 1, 2020    November 13-15 Luxury Wedding Exhibition Event in Provence.  Read More

Jun 30, 2020 A Game of Croquet at Chateau de Lalande or a Picnic at Chateau de la Motte Husson?  Read More

Jun 29, 2020 Artist Claire Warbeck paints Stephanie Jarvis.  Read More

Jun 28, 2020 Escape to Chateau de Villette in Burgundy Post Lockdown.  Read More

Jun 27, 2020 A Message to Dick and Angel from Australia.  Read More

Jun 26, 2020 The Angel Inspired Caravan!  Read More

Jun 25, 2020 The Temple of Love at Chateau Saint Georges.  Read More

Jun 24, 2020 Chateau de la Puisaye is Open for Visitors.  Read More

Jun 23, 2020 Fantasy Bedrooms!  Read More

Jun 22, 2020 Marie Wiik shares a floral technique from Chateau de Lalande.   Read More

Jun 21, 2020 The Weekend Recipe Courtesy of Chateau de Vaudezert.  Read More

Jun 20, 2020 New Series: Follow the Renovations.  Read More

Jun 19, 2020 Wonderful Wednesday Offers from Dick and Angel.  Read More

Jun 18, 2020 A Tale of Two Chateaux!!  Read More

Jun 17, 2020  A Portrait of Dick Strawbridge by Claire Warbeck.  Read More

Jun 16, 2020  “Coronavirus restrictions are being lifted” Emmanual Macron.  Read More

Jun 15, 2010  France Opens its Borders Today.   Read More

Jun 13, 2020  The Marriage of Figaro is coming to Chateau de Lalande.   Read More

Jun 12, 2020  France opens to Visitors from Europe from Monday!  Read More

Jun 11, 2020  Escape to the Chateau Makes the TV Choice Awards Shortlist!  Read More

Jun 10, 2020 19 Hours – A Day in the Life of a Wedding Planner/Chef.  Read More

Jun 9, 2020  A Chateau Filled with Tango and Peonies.  Read More

Jun 8, 2020  A Partial Tour of Château du Doux.  Read More

Jun 7, 2020  Dick and Angel’s “A Year at the Chateau” coming October 2020. Read More

Jun 6, 2020  Practicum Dancing at Chateau de Lalande.  Read More

Jun 5, 2020   Fab Portrait of Angel Strawbridge.  Read More

Jun 4, 2020    Live from a Mystery Chateau!!!  Read More

Jun 3, 2020   A Drone’s Eye View of Chateau de la Basmaignee.  Read More

Jun 2, 2020   The Strawbridge Family Picnic Home Video.  Read More

Jun 1, 2020   Follow the Renovations of Chateau de Montmagner.  Read More

More Gossip