Montcuq (46800) has established a number of ‘claims to fame’ in its recent history from the hilarity of its name which when mispronounced can mean something quite different! It is safest to adopt an Occitan pronouncement which has a ‘k’ at the end rather than a ‘q’ or indeed no last letter at all. The inhabitants of Montcuq are known as Montcuquois
The town was also voted the ‘best place to live in France’ and it has also had its skirmishes with the Monopoly board-game manufacturer who after holding a vote for French places that might appear, ignored the outright winner of Montcuq.
Most of all, Montcuq is now known for its ever-popular Sunday market. A couple of kilometres out of the village there is also a lovely bathing lake. During July and August there is a life guard on duty (small charge) but the lake is worth a visit at any time of year.
Montcuq was a prosperous place in the 12 and 13th centuries; its fortune linked to the Counts of Toulouse. Its fortifications were regularly destroyed including their complete destruction in the 100 Years War. Most of the current half-timbered houses date from the reconstruction following that destructive period. It is well worth a wander around the small lanes that run behind the main street and even a climb to the tour, the only reminder of earlier defences, which stands proud above the village.
Each autumn Montcuq also hosts an annual two day endurance race for horses which attracts runners and riders from all over the world. The village is also on the pilgrim route of Saint- Jacques de Compostela.
The village has a vibrant community and is a centre for all sorts of art, music and craft. There are a number of cafes and restaurants and the usual bakers, banks, pharmacy, convenience store and some shops that offer more regional produce. Quieter in winter and very lively in summer. Montcuq remains a very popular local village.
Photo credits (unless otherwise stated) The Quercy Local