Help us with renovations and gardening near Moulins, central France




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 Min stay requested: at least a week

  • Description


    We are a family of three - our son Hugo is 13 yrs old - and we live in central France, hosting French students and adults for English (sometimes Theatre-in-English) Immersion a week at a time. We have an old farm property, Chapière, that we are renovating very slowly (and trying to increase the food production, too).
    We moved here - from London, via 5 yrs in the Scottish Highlands - pretty much full time a few years ago and Hugo is at a Steiner school here and completely bilingual. As are we. Almost. Hugo frequently corrects his parents' pronunciation!

  • Types of help and learning opportunities

    Types of help and learning opportunities

    DIY and building projects
    Creating/ Cooking family meals
    Help around the house
    General Maintenance
    Help with Computers/ Internet

  • Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Cultural exchange and learning opportunities

    Fully bilingual family (though English spoken at home) deeply immersed in French rural life. My wife and I were both professional actors and now use theatre in teaching English, particularly in our 'Theatre-in-English' 'séjours'.
    Our son goes to a Waldorf Steiner school (in the middle of the forest!) and we're quite involved in the school and all its activities, markets, fêtes etc..

  • Projects involving children

    Projects involving children

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

  • Help


    General physical help is what's needed but anyone with roofing, building, woodworking, tree management, farming, gardening (etc.) experience more than welcome. But extra - willing but unskilled! - pairs of hands are just as welcome.
    Good food and wine guaranteed; my wife, Tanya, is a dab-hand at Thai, French, Italian, English and Japanese cooking.
    And we don't work too ridiculously hard, either; plenty of time and opportunity for relaxation and enjoyment of the area.

  • Languages

    Languages spoken
    English: Fluent
    French: Fluent
    Japanese: Intermediate

    This host offers a language exchange
    This host has indicated that they are interested in sharing their own language or learning a new language.
    You can contact them directly for more information.

  • Accommodation


    One double bedroom in the (already-renovated!) house available at the moment (NON-SMOKING). But one early project is to renovate the 'bread-oven' into self-contained accommodation.
    In fact, right now, we'd all probably stay 25-mins away in my father-in-law's 5-bedroom house (where we do the English Immersion teaching) in Noyant d'Allier (NON-SMOKING!!), and travel to Chapière, the farmhouse outside Saint Plaisir when working there, although there are jobs aplenty to be done on the Noyant house, as it is a lovely old '19-teens' 'Townhouse' - on the edge of the village! The village itself has a large Vietnamese population, so there is a temple and a 6m golden Buddha, as well as an excellent restaurant, 'Le Petit d'Asie'. There is also a Mining Museum, a beautiful 'Chateau-fort' and a Velorail. Not bad for a tiny French country village!

  • What else ...

    What else ...

    VERY peaceful, rural, unspoiled part of beautiful France. Two beautiful towns close by - Moulins and Montluçon - and two bigger just an hour away - Nevers and Bourges. Paris 2.5hrs by train. Volcanic region of Puy-de-Dôme and the regional capital, Clermont-Ferrand, 75 mins away.
    Bikes and buses available but we're always in and out of Moulins, so happy to ferry you there - or to the station.
    We live a pretty relaxed way of life and really only have one absolute no-no which is smoking.

  • 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

  • Space for parking camper vans

    Space for parking camper vans

    No limits

  • Can possibly accept pets

    Can possibly accept pets

    Not with us at Noyant (it's my father-in-law's house) but if you're happy to stay at Chapière (read profile for info), then, with some restrictions, pets are OK.

  • 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

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Accuracy of profile: (4.9)

Cultural exchange: (5.0)

Communication: (5.0)

Host ref number: 812885236137