We are originally from the UK, working and living in France as Property Guardian's. We bought part of a dis-used dairy farm several years ago and are renovating. We are both middle aged, love the outdoor life, animals and are Gardeners by trade, but have a varied background. My passion is the garden and rescuing dogs!
Ed has been a Landscaper/Gardener/Farmer/in security all his working life.
I have trained in different occupations - Vet nurse/Personal Fitness Trainer/livery stable manager/massuesse and so on. I I have many hobbies, and volunteer at the local dog refuge.
Ed likes to shoot (targets, not animals) and is multi skilled in most aspects of renovations and running and sheep care are his main hobbies. We also enjoy films and he loves Star Trek!!
We've lived in Italy/North Wales/France and many locations in the UK together , 5 years on a boat in London but otherwise always in the countryside. My family was military, Ed served, and we both enjoy physical work, though I spend far too much time on the computer/tablet/phone these days!
We have 20 Ouessant sheep and 2 rescue Jack Russell types, both young and have chickens where we work, so we have lots of fresh free range, organic eggs and veg from the veggie garden.
Anyone who comes to us will have plenty of opportuntiy to share skills. Our visitors can be assured of a warm welcome, good home cooking/wine/beer and a comfy bed. We are Pescetarian so vegetarians are welcome.
We need visitors to be very hands on, help with gardening, cooking, housework, walking the dogs, assisting with clearing our old farmyard of weeds, painting fences and sheds, and to enjoy our remote location.
We are especially looking for people who have building skills, there is alot of stone pointing needs doing!.
We would also like our visitor/s to help out with renovations and maintaining the surrounding grounds. There is a private caravan to sleep in, hot shower, basic kitchen and laundry facilities when we are there. A double room with en-suite shower when we are our workplace.
I could collect you from the station in Lisieux, Paris is a 1 hour and 40 minute train journey away.
I often go out to the beach or on long walks with the dogs, so it will be a great opportunity to travel around Normandy, visiting places like the beaches, Bayeux etc, as there is lots to see and do in the warmer months.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
Help around the house
We speak English and I am learning French, but anyone with any language is welcome provided we can communicate - if all else fails ... there's DeepL the translation app, to help!
Depending on what task need doing, visitors could learn;
animal care - sheep/dogs/chickens - feeding/recognising illness/keeping in ideal conditions etc
It is essential that our visitors enjoy being in the countryside, don't mind getting dirty and like animals! they must bring appropriate work (it get really hot in the summer) clothing, tools and gloves will be provided.
Help at our farm is a priority but help at both locations would be great.
pointing and painting fences
cooking and light housework
walking the dogs
gardening and planting if the weather allows
En-suite bedroom in a typical old French detached house in the beautiful grounds of an old Manoir, with wi-fi and all 'mod cons.' while we are at our workplace. The internet is reasonable at the house.
At the farm a dry private caravan which is situated in a barn. There is a hot water shower in the house and a basic kitchen with washing machine but the main part of the house is not yet habitable.
I go into Vire for coffee and to use the internet as it's not connected to the property. From Vire we can visit Granville and Mont St Michel amongst other places if there is time.
We have 2 bicycles that you are welcome to borrow.
We are guardians living deep in agricultural, Normandy countryside. It is peaceful and beautiful with woods and lots of walks nearby, we have all the essential facilities. I was a volunteer myself for 6 months in France, at four different locations, so I am well aware what is expected, though I am new to hosting visitors. We are not at all religious and are very eco minded.
Work clothes/walking/work boots/wellies and old clothes will be needed as visitors will get dirty. We will provide work gloves, any necessary protective clothing (i.e. minding the bonfire) and tools.
We often have a beer or glass off wine in the evenings, and love to exchange stories with people. There are books and a TV for DVD's if visitors like to watch films and a radio but no live TV. We have wi-fi but in rural France it is not very fast, so streaming movies is not encouraged unless it's on our main TV.
I love to walk and go out for coffee, so there will be opportunities to visit local coffee bars/local food markets/shops/tourist spots/ beautiful sandy beaches and our neighbours. I have a pushbike if visitors wish to use it, and a copious amount of dog walking is also actively encouraged!
There are no local bus routes where we live but we can drop off/pick up on days off.
Paris is one hour and forty minutes away by train from Lisieux, our main largest town, and our smallholding is near Vire, and Lisieux has a brilliant Saturday morning market.
Visitors will be expected to work productively alongside us, keep their living area clean, respect our values and have spending money as meals are provided but any extra's wanted should be bought by the visitors.
Coffee/tea and squash/water will be 'on tap' and some beer/wine in the evening.
Please make us aware of any allergies or dietary requirements (sorry, 32oz steak and champagne is not available... lol!) We look forward to welcoming you to our home.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week