Day 13 of Travel in France was a combination of walk and the pursuit of glass blowing! I wanted to explore some of the villages on the Routes des Verrières, starting with Claret and its wonderful, small, contemporary museum. The museum has a permanent exhibition about the history of glass and glassmaking, an art practised by the nobility of Sommieres, with attendant privileges, until the French Revolution.
The Halle de Verre in Claret.
On the top level of the museum was an exhibition by contemporary women glassmakers. I loved these pieces by Catherine Farge.
And these pieces…
Claret away from the ‘main’ road is an old village and it is worth taking time to wander through the streets. Oddly, I can’t find any information about the village on the internet.
The church dates from 11C and the stained class, old and contemporary, is lovely.
Sauteyragues, another glassmaking village, originates from a Roman settlement, probably because there was an important north-south route in the area. I could find no sign of the Romans, or glassmaking, but there is the beautiful 12C church of Saint Martin.
Nearby is the 12C church of Notre Dame d’Aleyrac. The photograph below is from a marvellous site. Why is it here, in the middle of fields in a quiet valley? Again I can’t find information on the internet.
Valflaunes followed but by now I was tired and couldn’t do it justice, so back to the gîte to sit in the sun with a new book, Val McDiarmid’s Mermaids Singing. A shower, aperitifs with the neighbours, supper and feet up at the end of an eventful day!