Help with the renovation of an old house near Hesdin, northern France



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  • Description


    We moved to France in August 2015 to renovate a lovely old house that we found just a few months before.
    Nicky is a singer and vocal coach and Andy is a photographer/ chef. We hope to run workshops in the future and also live a semi self sufficient lifestyle. We have a beautiful garden with a small wood, another garden which was used as a veg patch and a small field. We hope to grow veg have polytunnels for chillies and have some livestock like chickens and goats.
    Our house is in Northern France just an hour south of Calais and we are surrounded by wonderful countryside with some amazing, large forests. Our local towns of Hesdin and Montreuil-sur-mer are steeped in history and are great for a day out especially on market days.
    The house was built originally as a school but was taken over during the second world war, when the German army used it as a local headquarters, after which it became a family home. We have done a lot of work in the short time that we have been here including rewiring and installing a new environmentally friendly heating system.
    We have two lively puppies, a Griffon called Muppet and a Cocker Spaniel called Mollie.

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    General Maintenance
    Help around the house
    Animal Care
    Art Projects

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

    This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Our list of jobs is still very long though and we would like to invite peple to lend a hand in exchange for some fine food and a great environment in which to relax.

  • Help


    We are looking for people to help us organise and build our gardens to include a deck, formal and informal areas and pathways. We would like to extend the wood and get the field ready for the arrival of livestock.
    The vegetable garden needs constant maintenance and planting and the flower beds never seem to stop needing weeding!
    We have a beautiful but elderly barn which needs the roof tiles taking off, some of the joists replacing, maybe extending the height at the same time and then returning the lovely original tiles.
    Inside we need some plastering, lots of very old windows that need filling and painting, some joinery, carpentry and painting......lots of painting!
    We would also be keen to find out more about the history of our house so anyone with an interest in history and good French would be most welcome!

  • Languages spoken

    English: Fluent

  • Accommodation


    We currently have 2 double bedrooms as well as our own double room which all share a lovely new bathroom. We also have 2 more double en-suite rooms for our business and at some stage a further double when we move our bedroom into the as yet un-renovated loft. We have a large communal area for dining and chilling out and a TV room.
    Unfortunately there is no disabled access to the building currently.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    Our village is quite remote with the nearest town being 7km away. Our village does not have any facilities such as bars or shops but there are some loverly walks and the forests are perfect for mountain biking. We have some great restaurants nearby including 3 with Michelin Stars.
    We live a quiet life here and enjoy watching the wildlife which visits our garden and exploring the local area.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

    • Can host families

  • How many Workawayers can stay?

    How many Workawayers can stay?

    More than two

  • ...

    Hours expected

    Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week

Host ref number: 424431998592