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Adrian (English) and Shamsiah (Malaysian) have renovated a set of farm buildings in the Allier 03, right in the middle of France. We have 5 acres (2 hectares) of land and we spend our summers here growing our own vegetables and fruit organically and continuing to maintain and improve the 2 houses, the enormous barn and other outbuildings. We also play tennis, canoe and entertain local friends as well as friends and relatives from all over the world. In the winter we travel all over the world. We also let one of our houses during the summer as a self catering holiday home.
This is a little known but lovely part of France with no pollution, very little traffic on the roads and really French local community. Little has changed here for a hundred years. We are in the foothills of the Massif Central and the countryside is gently rolling with meadows, hedgerows, rivers, lakes and forest. The farming is mostly calf rearing the cattle being predominantly Charollais. We are only one and a half hours from the formerly volcanic chain of mountains around Clermont-Ferrand the best known of which is Puy de Dome.
DIY and building projects
Creating/ Cooking family meals
This project could involve children. For more information see our guidelines and tips here.
We are widely travelled and love to meet people from around the world. We are also experienced biological gardeners so there is the opportunity to learn and/or share experience and skills in this area. We are also experienced and have some knowledge of machinery maintenance and eco building materials so we can also learn and teach.
If you are learning English you will benefit from being immersed in the language, and if you are learning French we have many French friends with whom we only speak French.
With a large garden and 5 acres of land, mostly grass which we cut at least once a week, we need help of various kinds. This includes: planting vegetables and flowers, weeding, harvesting, cutting grass (we have 2 tractor mowers), hedge cutting, pruning, making jam and other preserves, maintenance of machinery, and general building maintenance. All our buildings are of local materials and we only use lime mortar.
We welcome equally, people of all ages with experience, or those wanting to learn. We also welcome people who want to improve their English through working with us. We can provide a large a very comfortable private bedroom with en-suite bathroom and toilet, for a couple or 1 or more singles.
We welcome you to eat with us and occasionally cook for us but it is important that you are able to eat what we eat as we don't have time to cook separate meals. We eat meat except pork, but tend to eat more white than red meat. We also eat a lot of fish and frequently cook vegetarian menus. Our cuisine reflects our travels in different parts of the world.
We are none smokers, and would prefer none smokers as workaways. We provide most kinds of safety equipment like ear defenders, gloves, eye protection, etc., but please bring suitable working clothes and, most important, suitable footwear
Large, private, ensuite bedroom in the barn suitable for a couple or 1 or more singles. You could also camp in our meadow if you like.
If you are looking for a vibrant nightlife, this is not the place. But if you like the countryside, walking, cycling, bird watching, good food, tennis, swimming (there are several lakes that you can swim in as well as open air pools), canoeing, the occasional theatre or concert, this is ideal. We have bikes, and canoes and can lend you a old car from time to time. There is no public transport.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
We have a separate studio with en suite bathrook for workaways and the Wifi modem is in the sitting area so there always a good connection.
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week
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