Renovation challenge: a Bishop’s sprawling palace in the south of France

Now an artist’s studio in need of some TLC

Once a bishop’s lavish winter residency, this vast French palace was abandoned for 200 years before being revived as a studio and performance space by an artist and musician.

Place de l’Eglise is in Alan, 60 km south of Toulouse, and the 16th-century French property was the winter home of Bishop Jean De Foixrailly. Abandoned during the French revolution, it stood empty until the 1980s when pianist Nanna Hansen and her painter husband Jens Birkemose adopted it as their concert hall, studio and living space.

Renovation challenge: a Bishop’s sprawling palace in the south of France
Via Adam Schnack

The 1,500 sqm south wing of the Haute-Garonne mansion is now for sale via Adam Schnack for €300,000, and it comprises 15 rooms with soaring six-metre-high ceilings. Though many original features were plundered by antique dealers and villagers, it still has a cache of gothic details and sculptures – as well as wall murals by Birkemose.

It’ll need some serious elbow grease to bring it back to its best, but there’s plenty to inspire your renovation challenge, and lots of space to live – and work.

Renovation challenge: a Bishop’s sprawling palace in the south of France
Via Adam Schnack
Renovation challenge: a Bishop’s sprawling palace in the south of France
Via Adam Schnack
Renovation challenge: a Bishop’s sprawling palace in the south of France
Via Adam Schnack

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