We’ve said a lot about our house in Liñeiras without really mentioning the rest of the village, although village is possibly a rather grand description of the disjointed and disparate collection of houses which makes up our immediate community.
You will know from our previous descriptions that our property doesn’t really overlook any other houses although there is a small hamlet about half a kilometre to the southwest down towards the bottom of the valley which can just be seen. Our closest neighbour is to the east, just behind me when I took the photograph above, and was bought by an English couple a few months after we completed our purchase.
Our neighbours house was built around the same time as ours in the 1880’s and is a very large square building over three floors with a brick bard addition to the side. It is massive, twice the size of our main house, and our new neighbours are intending to renovate it, turning it into a number of self catering apartments. They are up against the same planning issues as ourselves, and whilst they are spending a lot of time in Liñeiras doing prepatory work, they will still have a long wait before they can start any major works.
Follow the road past this house and you stumble on what must be the smallest church that I have ever seen, our own little Iglesia Liñeiras.
Enclosed on three sides the fourth is open to the elements and protected just by a wire mesh arrangement. Inside is a small altar with the ubiquitous icons and a couple of small pews which could, at a push, seat three people each.
I’m guessing that the contents of the collection plate never take much counting.
The church is causing our new English neighbours some planning concerns as it is within fifty metres of their property and this throws up a whole new set of considerations for the authorities. That said, it doesn’t seem to have caused a family from Madrid too many problems. They bought another of the villages’ abandoned houses a few years ago and have fully renovated it into a family holiday home which they use a few weeks each year.
There are a few other nearby houses, mostly north of our property, but the rest of the village is spread out over a couple of square kilometers. We’ve not fully explored yet, but we have met several of the locals who despite speaking Gallego seem cheery and happy that people are finally looking to renovate village houses and start their life in their beautiful corner of Galicia.