La Buissière Castle
La Buissière Castle, locally known as Château de La Buissière or simply as Le Donjon (the Keep), is situated in a -seemingly abandoned- residential housing estate in the town of Bruay-la-Buissière, south of the city of Lille in the Pas-de-Calais department in the Nord-Pas-de-Calais region in France.
La Buissière Castle was built on a wooded hill named Mont Royal above the village of La Buissière probably during the beginning of the 13th century. It was then owned by the Lords of Béthune who probably used it as a manor.
Later the region was continuously exposed to invasions by the English and Spanish due to its location on the borders of the provinces of Flanders and Artois.
Countess Mahaut strenghtened La Buissière Castle and transformed it into a defensive fortress. It became one of her preferred residences. She also established a garrison in the castle under the command of a Lord.
Between 1360 and 1361 the walls were completely restored. In 1380 an esquire; Broustart de la Tourelle, is mentioned as keeper of La Buissière Castle in a inventory of furniture, food and ammunition deposited in the castle.
In 1470 Charles the Bold added stables and barns to the castle. The castle was then regularly visited by the rulers of the Artois region. The castle was then owned by the Courteville family.
Because of wars maintenance of the castle was neglected and by 1505 it was in a very poor condition. After the castle was retaken by French troops in 1522 it was dismantled on orders of the Duke of Vendôme.
In 1735 a new La Buissière Castle was built on the site, incorporating the remnants of the old keep, by a member of the De Maulde family who already possessed the castle since the 16th century. This new chateau became the manor of the Marquess De Maulde. This building was torn down in 1964 leaving only the ruin of the keep.
The ruin stands on a seemingly private housing estate which was however freely accessible when I visited. The interior of the ruin can not be visited. The picture here showing the interior was made through glass. It is an interesting ruin which I would have liked to have entered. Too bad its surroundings are so sad.