Tuesday 22 September 2009

The Poterne

Last weekend I managed to visit the Potern museum for the first time. Simon visited exactly a year ago and wrote about it here.

The Poterne was the gatehouse to the château in Preuilly-sur-Claise. It is now the town museum, run by the Société Archaéologique (local history society). At the moment it is funded by the Society, but that responsibility is apparently due to be transferred to the Commune soon.

A different view of the Poterne.*
The Société Archaéologique has done a marvellous job of displaying and preserving a multitude of objects from Preuilly's past. There is a large collection of flint tools from the prehistoric, carved capitals from the middle ages, clog makers tools, apprentice and journeyman pieces from earlier generations of wood carvers and metal workers and assorted domestic objects. The pride of the collection are the Touraine bonnets, with their delicate hand stitched needlelace and incredibly finely goffered (steam pleated over metal rods) lace brims.

The museum is staffed entirely by volunteers, many of them teenagers, who open up and give guided tours (in French - if you speak English there is a written guide).


*everyone and his dog world has taken a photo of the poterne from below - except Simon. Otherwise we could show you the "usual" view as well.

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