In a courtyard where coaching horses once rested, now there are colourful gardens where children can play. Breakfast out here on croissants and homemade jams, or sit out with a glass of wine and a book from the library. In winter, cuddle up by the wood-burner amid Monsieur’s choice of antiques and paintings. South-facing bedrooms, up wide oak stairs, are elegantly decorated by Madame, an interior designer. Two have modern en suite showers but loos are shared. Table d’hôte is popular – guests often ask for the recipes – and you can book cooking lessons. There’s a pool and tennis and happy days can be spent fishing, golfing and walking in pristine countryside.