The Bonne Fontaine wash house

06 au 26 Jul 2019

Place: Mérindol (Vaucluse)

Public : Adults

Mérindol lies in the heart of the Luberon regional nature park, with views over the River Durance floodplain, all the way to the Alpilles.

Built around its castle and protected by its ramparts, the village is thought to date back to the 13th century. No one really knows if Mérindol was destroyed by the plague or the wars in late medieval times, but by the early 15th century the village was deserted and unoccupied. Some families who converted to the Lutheran and Reformed faith quickly moved in and subsequently made Mérindol a symbol of Vaudois repression in Provence. In 1540, the Parliament in Aix ordered Mérindol to be razed to the ground. It was pillaged and set ablaze, just like 23 other villages in the Luberon.

Today, the town has expanded to the flat land on the plain, called “Les bastides” while all that remains of the old village are two sections of wall from the old castrum.

The Union APARE-CME organised a workcamp at Mérindol in 1992, in the area occupied by the castle and 17 years later the town and the UAC have once again teamed up, this time to conserve the Lavoir de la Bonne Fontaine wash house.

This wash house is located right next to the future Vaudois museum, in a peaceful and shaded spot where locals often come to cool down in summer.

You’ll take part in work to restore the wash house and its three basins by clearing loose material from the walls, applying new lime render and repairing stonework.

As you are right in the Luberon, you’ll be able to visit some picturesque nearby villages, as well as the Colorado Provençal, the Gorges d’Opedetteand excursions to Avignon, Aix en Provence and the market in Apt.                     

Special bonus : The peacefulness and fresh feel of this workcamp, together with this pretty Provencal village will appeal to both city folk and country life lovers alike.

Type of work: Conventional masonry and rendering

Hébergement : Separate male and female dormitories in big tents. You can bring your own tent.