Old Houses With Fringe Benefits

Sorry folks I kept calling St Stephen’s cathedra St Peter’s you know what it’s like when you get a name stuck in your head.

The sun really was a scorcher, by noon so I stayed indoors until the worst was over. I had set out along the ridge from where I am staying and quite by accident came upon“Bergfried”. I was looking for an alternative route off this ridge rather than the steep plunge at this end. And yes, I did find what I wanted the ridge runs out not too many kilometres from here and takes you out at the modern end of the city.

Bergfried was first owned by the Bishops of Passau as far back as the 16th century and served as far as I can tell, as a farm for Veste Oberhaus (which is here). In 1784 the then Bishop sold the property, and it changed hands several times after that.

Then in 1897, a “civil engineer” named Sebastian Muller and from this date until the outbreak of World War 1 ran it as a place of healing under the name “Bergfried” 

It was bought for 105,000 marks towards the end of WW1 (sounds like a lot of money, but the mark may not have been worth very much after the war) by the Schweikberg Benedictines who turned it into a college for theology students, and boarding school, and was thus until 1986.

In 1941 the National Socialists confiscated it and converted it into a training camp for female leaders in the Hitler Youth’s rural service.

The house returned to the hands of Schweikberg Abbey in the 1980s and became a house of silence. It suffered the fate of most houses of monks at that time, lack of numbers.

The complex has been on the market since 2006 and repeatedly advertised since then. The property includes five hectares of land and buildings – and the sales pitch is a “Quiet residential area on an unobstructed southern slope, with old trees and scrubs and a forest in an absolutely secluded location” Even changing the property from a “special monastery area” to a residential area, has not brought the buyers beating a pathway to their door, clearly, the asking price is too high, the other obstacle to a sale is the buildings are listed, so trying to get planning permission to do anything with the building will be difficult, if not impossible. 

The property as it is today

I really enjoyed scouting around, and it was a nice day for it.

Stay safe.

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