At the meeting point of the roads from Gombereto, Vetteglia, Montefegatesi and San Cassiano is an abandoned church…la Chiesa del Colle.
At some time it must have been a popular refuge for those travelling between the villages. Now it is crumbling and being taken over by the surrounding forest.
There is a path on the right of the church which must come from the villages below.
Behind the church is a pretty path leading through the trees to who knows where. I can see that it must have been a shady place to rest or perhaps to have a picnic.
If only this old chestnut tree could talk.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful to see these old buildings restored?
The church at Colle was apparrently still in use up to the 1960’s when it was closed down. It was dedicated to San Rocco, patron saint against the plague and I am told by locals that the interior furnishings were beautiful but were all stolen!
It has certainly deteriorated a lot since 1960. Once the roof falls in it is all over for these buildings.
Your photos are lovely and suggest a time gone by, especially the graffiti showing dates etc. I’d love to know what it looked like inside. Beautiful!
It was closed and boarded up, so I couldn’t get inside the building…pity.
Ah well, it leaves us free to imagine how it might have been…..!
Love this POST! I am COMPLETELY intrigued by any abandoned building in Italy. Again….really enjoyed your photos and post.
There are far too many abandoned buildings in Italy and not enough money to fix them. This would make a lovely restaurant or stopping point on the road to several villages.
My brother in law had the idea to turn this into a pizzeria at one time , but probably would never have got permission. I personally have seen these turn from a “not used” building into the sorry state is is now. Maybe all the villages should pull together to try to renovate it ? The path to the right goes down to another path from which you can definitely get to Vetteglia and I think to San Gemignano , as I ride this path on my quad .
I think it would be great to see the building come to life again. It must have been lovely once.
It is sad to see a building go to ruin…especially a church that meant so much to people at one times.
Sadly, there are many buildings like this dotted around the area.
. . . visions of Angkor Wat . . .
On a small scale.
There are quite a few small churches like this which are “deconsecrated” and have not been in use for a long time. Throughout Italy. Not enough parishioners, not enough priests… And they are closed down. Time takes its toll and I can see that the roof of this particular one is starting to go… It’s the beginning of the end. I guess that the building belongs to the Catholic Church, perhaps they should try to sell it… If they can find a buyer in the current economic climate. Restoration of these buildings is problematic and expensive as they have many restrictions. In Umbria and in Tuscany, a small number of these have been turned into beautiful homes, but it has not been an easy road for the owners. Italy is full of beautiful ruins waiting for loving restorers….
It would be great to see it saved before it falls down completely. Perhaps somebody will come along to love it.
there’s actually a lot of abandoned old chapels and churches here and there in the area.
Close to Casabasciana, a bit after ‘la villa aurora’, going up towards the town, there’s one on the left, not far from the street. there’s also the chapel San Lorenzo on the road between Casabasciana and Casoli. Now, one was beautifully renovated close to Casabasiana, an old
Roman Church from the 12th century (there’s actually a sign indicating its place a bit before
reaching casabasiana – it’s a yellow sign ‘Pieve Romanica’. We have a house in Casabasciana and it would be a pleasure to meet you there next time we come – how can we reach you?
I will seek out the chapels on my next visit. I will be back in Bagni di Lucca in mid February until mid June. My email is email@example.com.
Seeing this lovely post reminds me of the entire abandoned village of Bugnano below Monti di Villa. There must be so many stories. …. And who was the last one to close the door and leave a village?
I have been to Bugnana and did a post on it some time ago. It seems such a pity that has been left to decay. I am afraid it might happen to more of the tiny villages. A few have only a handful of residents, many of whom are old.
I should like to visit the church at Colle during our holidays in Bagni di Lucca this year (June) but I think its very dificult to find the way. Can you give me exactly information where I will find this place. I have seen the fotos and I like it very much. Thanks a lot and regards from Germany
You will find this church on the road from La Villa to San Cassiano at the junction of the roads mentioned at the top of the post. It is quite easy to find.