Chapelle St-Jacques and Montarnel

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This is another of the hidden gems, at the end of a narrow road on the south bank of the River Lot.

In the 11thC the village grew up round the château, which is one of the oldest in the area. It is a delightful village on the river with well maintained stone houses with stone slab roofs, dormer windows and shutters. The château is closed except for Journées du Patrimoine. A curtain wall with two smaller towers surrounds the remains of a larger round tower.

Chapelle St-Jacques et St-Roch had belonged to château and was built in the bailey. It is a simple stone building with a small peigne cloche at the east end. The west front with a door set in a round arch with a small round window above is 12thC. The rest of the building is 13/14thC.

Inside is a very plain nave with a statue of St Roch above the pointed chancel arch. The small chancel is separated from the nave by a 13thC decorative iron grille similar to that in Conques. Inside is small stone altar. On the wall above is an empty square stone frame which would have held a picture but now has candlesticks along the base. There is another stone statue of St Roch on the altar and St Theresa in a wall niche. There is a large painting on south wall of St Roch with his dog which is mounted in an old retable with blue and red pillars picked out in gilt and decorative gilt scrolls on either side.

There is nothing to do here, except to drop out and enjoy the peace and sunshine. It is a delightful place.

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