Gardening, horses and outdoor help in Lower Normandy, France



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 Min stay requested: 1 month or more

  • Description


    Dear Workawayer,


    We are a fun and friendly British family in the countryside in Normandy, with 4 children, horses (13 horses and 3 foals) and dogs. The family is Paul (45), Violet (41), Ellen (9), Jasper (8) and Phoebe (6) and Henry (3). Matic (26) from Slovenia, and Charlotte (60+) from Canada also live with us. Matic manages the yard and horses and has been with us for 4 years. Charlotte is the children and home specialist and a superb cook. She first came to us as a Workawayer last summer and decided to come back to us for 2 years! We also have 2 family dogs and a stable cat. We are English, the children are bilingual French, Violet also speaks fluent French and a little Italian and Charlotte speaks spanish. Matic speaks German, slovenian, Serbo-Croat and various other european languages.

    Paul runs a humanitarian charity running projects in Africa, He works from home but then goes away for meetings in London and to Africa 4 times a year. Violet works full time for one of the largest French banks. She has quite a long commute so it makes for long working days.

    You may be able to ride depending on experience. Paul is a very experienced riding instructor and we have a huge outdoor arena with jumps, grazing and stabling. We live in the Normandy countryside in a friendly hamlet only 10 kms from a decent sized town with all the amenities. You can have the use of our car if required and by arrangement although your own transport would be a better solution.

    We enjoy welcoming people into our home,hearing your stories, telling ours, putting the world to rights and sharing jokes.

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Happy travels.


  • Type of help

    Type of help

    Babysitting / child care
    General Maintenance
    Help in the house
    Animal care
    Help with Computers / internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    You would benefit from living in France and enjoying the French culture and language although we are British, we speak English at home and our life is essentially British. Two cultures for the price of one! Although we are in the countryside you will never be alone, but Falaise and Caen are an easy drive away.

    We live in glorious countryside and for those who enjoy animals, particularly horses and dogs, you have an opportunity for immersion. This time of year is idyllic.

    My lovey gentle mare is also available to ride as I am pushed for time to give her the attention she deserves. She will accommodate most levels of rider (perhaps not complete beginners). Paul is a very experienced instructor as well. We are really fun, easy going welcoming family. Come and stay!

  • Help


    Current Requirements:

    We would like to find another workawayer for a last minute placement for the end of August if we can. We are away from 17-25 but we have a workawayer here but she'd prefer to have another person to keep her company.

    We have space in September until the 15th.

    Our situation might suit a couple or 2 individuals to divide the tasks between them. Any age/circumstance welcome.

    Charlotte has to return to Canada to deal with a family emergency. She will be gone until the end of August. This means that there will be definitely be tasks that involve children, entertaining them and ferrying them around to their various activities. We will also miss Charlotte's cooking so any willing chefs will be very welcome.

    An extra pair of hands to help on the yard with the horses would be great. Help with mucking out tacking up, treating the horses, assisting the vet. Tractor drivers very welcome.

    Other jobs are in the garden. Experienced gardeners welcome to guide us in establishing our garden, or anyone who is simply handy with a mower and strimmer to help us keep on top of it.

    We have no end of DIY projects, Painting, repairing and fixing things. If you are a handy man/woman that would be excellent.

    I any of the above interests you please let us know. Come for as long as you want. From our perspective, the longer the better. We would love to have a long term person/couple to build a relationship with.

    You must drive, or if you are a couple one of you must.

  • Languages spoken

    Languages spoken

    English, French, Slovenian, Croat, some Italian

  • Accommodation


    Your accommodation is either:

    Heated and comfortable caravan parked in the garden double or single bed(s). It has a sink, gas cooker and hot water, little fridge and chemical loo. Principle bathroom facilities are in the main house. You can sit outside your caravan, watching the mares and foals right in front of you. Limited internet as it is far from the modem.

    Our spare room in the main house. The room is your own but bathroom is shared.

    Although you will have your own space to retreat to when/if necessary, you are very welcome to spend as much or as little time in the main house with the family as you want. There is unlimited fast internet, Netflix etc.

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    We are situated in the countryside in Bazoches au Houlme, 6kms from the nearest small town Putanges Pont Ecrepin , and 10km from Falaise with all types of shops and the famous castle of William the Conqueror. We are 45 minute drive from Caen, a large city with the port of Ouistreham with ferries to the UK and 3 hours by car or 2 hrs by train to Paris.

    5 minutes away is Lac de Rabodanges where there is water-skiing and a lakeside bar and restaurant. Suisse Normande is 10 minutes away with walking, biking, hiking, kayaking and outdoor pursuits. Haras du Pin, site of the 2014 World Equestrian Games is 20 minutes away. Bagnoles de L'Orne, a well known spar town is half an hour away. The Normandie beaches are within easy reach of us with key WW2 historical sites and museums etc with the Memorial Museum in Caen 45 minutes away. There are numerous beaches and charming seaside towns from 45 minutes away such as Luc Sur Mer, Honfleur, Cabourg, Houlgate, Deauville etc. Bayeux, of the famous tapestry is about and hour away and the Mont St Michel, Basse Normandie's most famous landmark makes an excellent day trip.

    Train services nationwide are in easy reach either from Caen or Argentan. From there it is an easy trip to Paris. This location is better suited to drivers as there is little in walking distance.

  • A little more information

    A little more information

    • Internet access

    • Limited internet access

      Limited internet access

    • We have pets

    • We are smokers

  • 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

Toffee and her Mum Fudge, just q few days old, with Jasper.
Henry on his new bike at home
Welcome to the world, Lolly. Just a few hours old.
Ellen on La Rochambelle march in aid of cancer.
Henry...being Henry.
Ellen riding Rita
Paul and Henry
Phoebe paddling in the river Orne
Welcome to the world Smartie. Just a day old here with Mum.
Jasper sailing home to France
Ellen and Phoebe all dressed up for a party

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Host ref number: 478595942119