Castle History

Castle History

In 1595, the domain of Charbogne was sold to the military governor of Mézières, the Lord of Richecourt, by Louis de Gonzague’s widow, Henriette de Clèves.

The Lord of Richecourt ordered the construction of a fortified castle with corps de logis, surrounding walls and the two towers situated at the north of the castle. A drawbridge and steep ditches were also built for protection. Construction works stopped in 1600. Other buildings were gradually added by the successive owners from the Guiot de Richecourt family, until 1676 when they sold the castle to Antoine de Wignacourt. We found a description of the castle in the deed of sale: “the castle and manor house thereof, comprising several apartments, enclosing walls flanked by four defensive towers, one on each corner, a drawbridge spanning a moat filled with living water…” The bridge was replaced with the actual porch by Antoine’s son, Daniel. The castle’s condition greatly suffered from his successor’s sparse visits. It was finally sold during the Revolution as part of the National heritage.

The Henrat-Crewel family (19th century) A rich “bourgeois”, Ponce-Antoine HENRAT, bought the castle and started extensive renovation works. The two west towers were reduced from 10m high to 5m through extensive roof framing and covering works; an inscription on the portal informs us that it was “rétabli”, restored, at that time. On the west building (our 19 people accommodation), a stone was engraved with the date 1809.  Two drawings, one from 1847 and the other from 1870, both show that the castle was kept in perfect condition. There was no major alteration in the buildings between the village’s first land register in 1842 and that of 1980. However, from the middle of the 19th century, the castle slowly deteriorated and no major works were to be undertaken before 2006.

A new reconversion as a farm (end of 19th century until 1976).
This probably happened at the end of the 19th century. The new owners, the Noizet family (1910-1976), transformed the castle into a farm by conducting extensive works: most of the corps de logis was converted into stables; the south-east tower (the former chapel) became the farm’s granary and the north towers were made into sheepfolds.

In 1917, the northeast tower and part of the barn were heavily destroyed by a bomb. Their roof is now covered by a concrete platform. In the main courtyard, the barn’s facade was significantly modified.

In 1946, the castle was listed as national historic monument.

In 1989, the corps de logis collapsed, soon followed by the barn (east building). As the castle was definitively abandoned, the two east towers similarly crumbled to the ground. The final stroke came from the 1999 storm and the substantial damages made by squatters.

In 2006, the GAUBERT family bought the castle and embarked on intensive renovation. Works first started with consolidation and conversation plans. Then came, in 2007, the holiday cottage project: eventually, the castle will boast three cottages for group accommodation, ready to welcome friends, family and seminars, as well as a relaxation lounge complete with indoor swimming pool and sauna.

In 2007, a violent storm puts down most of the walls from the corps du logis, as well as the adjoining farm, with part of the roof hanging loose.

In April 2013, the first cottage opens, sleeping up to 19 people.