Worried about the climate crisis? Come and help create an ecological project in the Normandy countryside. We aim to set up a smallholding in order to be self-sufficient but also as a place for learning and teaching about how to respond to the ecological crisis, especially climate change.
This beautiful and tranquil 3-hectare site has former grazing land, a colombage (traditional wood-frame) house and barn, and several other outbuildings. We moved here in April 2018, and there is still plenty of repair and renovation work to do to make the land and buildings useful and productive again. We are renovating the house as a home for our family. In the future we intend to renovate the barn as a place to hold workshops and run other activities about the ecological crisis.
Isobel worked as a lecturer at the University of London and has written, researched and taught about organic agriculture and environmental politics. She is now busy being a mum and trying to develop an agroecological food garden when she gets the chance. Stephan is a political science researcher and, more recently, English teacher. He has researched and published work about ecological politics, political participation and protest.
Bricolage et projets de construction
Préparer les repas / cuisiner pour la famille
Aide dans une ferme
Aide avec des éco-projets
Aide à la maison
S’occuper des animaux
Pratique d’une langue
Our smallholding would suit an individual or couple who would like to spend time in an idyllic part of the French countryside, support the environment, and learn (or share) something new.
We live 3km from Vimoutiers – accessible by walking (35 minutes) or cycling (15 minutes). It’s ideal for anyone who want to learn and practice their French. Stephan speaks fluent French and he would be happy to speak French with you, but as a family we speak English so this would also be a good place to come if your goal is to improve your English. If you speak French, Isobel would welcome the opportunity to practice on you! Some basic German and Dutch also spoken.
There are a wide-range of building, construction and land management projects that need doing here. These could include helping to build a stud wall for a bathroom, helping convert an attic room into a bedroom, digging a trench for drainage, building a stone wall on the barn, pruning trees, clearing bramble and other vegetation and helping create a herb garden. There are also everyday tasks such as gardening, wood-cutting, cleaning and cooking.
There is a double bedroom with ensuite bathroom and compost toilet available for an individual or a couple in our house. Meals will generally be eaten together, with turns taken on preparation and cooking. We are vegetarian and would not want meat cooked in the house. We are happy to cater for other dietary requirements.
There is plenty of space here for those who enjoy sightseeing, walking and reading. We would be happy to show you the best local walks and places to visit. The village of Camembert is a short walk away, where there is a museum all about the famous cheese and a farm where you can find the only Camembert from Camembert itself! We also have a large collection of books – novels, gardening books, environmental politics, wildlife and nature as well as some language learning materials. Other activities in the area include additional cheese museums in Vimoutiers and Livarot as well as Camembert, a castle in Falaise, swimming in Lisieux, Gace, Argentan and Falaise.
We have a quiet family home and it would suit someone who is happy to get away from it all and enjoy the tranquility too!
There are train stations at Lisieux and Argentan (both 30 minutes away) which are connected to Paris, Caen, Le Mans and Granville. The ferry port at Caen-Ouistreham is just over an hour away. We’d be happy to pick you up from Lisieux, Argentan or Ouistreham port. If you’re flying in, we would ask you to take your holiday somewhere else.
If you think you would like to come and stay, we would want to chat to you on Skype first to see if the visit would work for all of us.
Accès Internet limité
Nous avons des animaux
Nous sommes fumeurs
Maximum 4-5 hours a day, 5 days a week