Jeanette and I are a semi-retired couple, running a large French holiday rental house (Gite). The rental property is an Orangerie, and the walls on which we are working, formed a part of the original entrance and gardens to an 8th century priory and subsequent re-built private chateaux. When we don't have guests, we work on restoration of the exterior of the property. We have a Maine Coone cat and often rescue birds which we look after till they are fit and ready for release. We left our hectic careers early to work at L'Orangerie. We are both in our mid 50s, so we are quite active. The property is adjacent to a chateau which is within the grounds of a 7th century priory that is also in the process of being restored by its French owners. The area is not flat like most of Normandy and we live in the Orne valley, one of three allies that make up the Suisse Normande area. There is fishing nearby and horse riding in the area.
Jeanette is a good cook, and whilst here, you will sample traditional Norman dishes, and a host of other delicious (and plentiful) offerings. Nobody leaves our table hungry or disappointed!
DIY and building projects
In the process of rebuilding an old stone wall, plus pointing. Learning to Mould new pillar caps for it. We also have an external field (currently used for football), where we would like to improve the layout and the composting facilities.
Depending upon the profile of the helpers, and whether we have guests staying in the main rental house, you may be accommodated in the main house, or in our attached houseor in a separate house a few kilometres away (we can arrange daily transport) - all options are located in a rural spot with magnificent views.
We are based in Suisse Normandy - very close to the impressive Roches d'Oetre. There are plenty of tourist things to do, or just take the opportunity to relax and soak up the atmosphere in your spare time - or maybe do some sketching etc. The Normandy Landing beaches are an hour's drive away, and William The Conquerer was born at nearby Falaise castle (14 kilometres). We have a selection of pushbikes that you are welcome to use.
Limited internet access
We have pets
We are smokers
Can host families
More than two
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week