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July-August 2017 Issue 30

uercy Local The

The Region’s FREE magazine in English

Inside – Meet – a Hat Blocker & a Whisky Distiller Discover – Issigeac & Montpezat de Quercy Find – Places to Escape to! Plus – Summer Events, Galleries, Cherry Cake & Wine-Tasting

DISPOSITION

Open-air Shakespeare in English 2-14 AUG 2017 www.ad-tour.com

SEE PAGE 20

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IN THE HEART OF THE C A H O R S V I N E YA R D S YO U ’ L L F I N D

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Le Caillau is a 300 year old winery lovingly restored into a restaurant, café and pottery painting atelier. • Our restaurant serves fresh, local, seasonal food • Our café has a selection of teas, coffee and homemade cakes every day • Paint your own masterpiece in our pottery painting atelier LE CAILLAU 46700 VIRE SUR LOT TEL:05 65 23 78 04 WWW.LECAILLAU.COM FACEBOOK.COM/LECAILLAU For opening hours outside of July and August please see our website.

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Opening hours July/August* MON–TUES: 10AM–5PM WED–SAT: 10AM–11PM SUNDAY: 12PM–4PM In the restaurant, lunch is served between 12pm–2.30pm and dinner from 7pm

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Welcome to the summer edition! You may notice that it’s rather larger than usual, in fact it’s the largest edition we’ve ever produced. Sadly it’s not been possible to include everything as we simply ran out of space. It’s been quite a challenge to get it produced in the usual time frame! To help keep your visitors entertained this summer we’ve included details of many local events and of course there’s a great selection of local restaurants which we hope will help people make the best of ‘dining-out’ during the next couple of months. We’re glad to be able to include some information about the lovely historical towns of Issigeac and Montpezat de Quercy. We will also be including two towns in the next edition – if you want it to be your town, then let us know. The next edition will be available for the start of September and importantly, please note that we’ve made a change to our publishing schedule. The edition that previously came out in November will now be a December publication. In the meantime you can follow us on Facebook or via our website. As always we ask you to please support our advertisers whenever possible. Have a wonderful summer. www.quercylocal.com Email: thequercylocal@gmail.com

Anna

CONTENTS Stefaan Eyckmans Gardening – Hypertufa Pots Issigeac Montpezat de Quercy What’s On? Art Points de Vue – Lauzerte Anglican Church – Cahors Child Friendly Accommodation Camper-Van Holidays The Hat Blocker Financial Matters Cherry and Almond Cake Club de Jardinage – Lauzerte Am Dram – Montaigu de Quercy Insurance Questions Quercy Fruits Brain Training French Page – Roquecor Market The Distiller Tasting the Lot Meet the Chef Joe Le Taxi Pella Rocca Rocamadour Horses – Les Roulottes du Pigeonnier The Happy Hamlet

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p.6 p.8 p.10 p.14 p.18- 32 p.33 p.36 p.40 p.42 p.43 p.49 p.52 p.54 p.60 p.64 p.68 p.72 p.74 p.76 p.78 p.82 p.86 p.88 p.89 p.90 p.92

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The Quercy Local ISSN: 2116-0392. No part of this publication may be copied, used or reproduced without the written consent of the proprietor. No responsibility is accepted for any claim made by advertisers. All content accepted and printed in good faith. Please check that all advertisers are registered businesses in France or in their home country. The Quercy Local is owned and managed by A Atkinson (Las Razes, Touffailles,( 82190) Siret: 518 460 605 00018. It’s produced by the Magazine Production Company, West Sussex, UK. Printed by Gráficas Piquer. French admin. Valérie Rousseau.


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 5

Do you have a beautiful home in South West France that could be the setting for an amazing holiday?

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


6 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

A Modern Master at work

Stefaan Eyckmans was born in Niel, a Flemish village lying in the shadows of Antwerp. The son of a painter, he soon discovered a love of art. Now, ‘some’ years later, Stefaan has a great reputation as a still-life painter. Since the early 1990s he’s created timeless compositions with ‘more-or-less’ everyday objects whilst keeping one eye firmly on the techniques of Willem van Aelst, Pieter Claesz, Heda, and other 17thC Flemish and Dutch masters.

S

tefaan’s work is a marriage of the tonal techniques used by the early masters and contemporary materials, colours and objects. This is a union which has blossomed into a modern realism with its roots firmly bedded in centuries-old traditional art. Importantly, however, whereas the early masters loved to illustrate opulence and wealth, Stefaan’s ‘still life’ offers sobriety and humility; whilst showing composition and form at its very best. The reality that he creates radiates a tranquillity and balance that offers real serenity. Or, as Stefaan describes his work ‘as emergency exits from our stressed, consumer-society’. In 2010 Stefaan moved to a quiet corner of the Quercy Blanc region to a home which nestles within the vineyards of Cahors. Choosing a quiet space for his home and studio has coincided with Stefaan’s work becoming represented internationally by some very well-renowned galleries including in The Netherlands, United Kingdom, The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 7

THE FURNITURE ROOM Vintage English and French furniture as well as home accessories, soft furnishings and gifts We can source items for you or please come and see our display. We can also supply pictures of what we currently have available

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United States, and recently a beautiful gallery in Paris, the capital of his new homeland! In 2012 Stefaan started to exhibit from his studio during the 2nd and 3rd weekends of July. These ‘exhibitions’ proved hugely popular and very successful; providing an opportunity for people to see first-hand art that would, otherwise, have required visits to distant cities. During these summer exhibitions visitors have commented that they would like to learn more about the techniques and materials that Stefaan uses, and also possibly see him working. So this year there’s a different approach. Stefaan will open his studio doors during the summer but it will not be for an exhibition; the studio will remain in ‘painting mode’ and visitors will be able to see how the paintings are created and have a chance to understand some classic painting techniques. It will be possible for people to return several times to follow the evolution of a particular painting. Opening for a longer period over the summer means that people visiting the region after July will also be able to visit. The studio will be opening in July and August on Wednesdays and Saturdays (15.00 -19.00) outside of these dates and times – appointments can be made (including for September). Indeed people are welcome at any time of year by appointment (see p.3). And of course…. an ‘apéro’ will never be far away. Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


8 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Hypertufa Pots

Hypertufa pots are rustic looking containers specifically designed for alpines. They are made from a mixture of cement, peat moss and perlite, and they are lighter than other planters such as those made from natural stone, cement or terracotta.

W

hat makes them particularly interesting is they are porous, so perfect for the sunloving plants that require good drainage and that do so well over here, and they are also able to withstand the kind of hard winters we sometimes endure in this region. Their coarse texture gives them a rough, rustic quality, ideally suited to our jardins de campagne here in rural France, and as they are handmade, they offer versatility and scope for creativity, where you can mould them into whatever shape and size you please. They’re actually quite easy (if rather messy!) to make and it’s a nice project for a sunny morning in the garden. It’s a good idea to gather your materials together before you start, and allow yourself a few hours for the mixing and moulding stage. The pots then need to be cured for three or four weeks afterwards, so it’s a project in two parts. Here’s a step-by-step guide.

Tools and Materials

Step One

Perlite (or vermiculite) Peat moss (or compost with a high peat content) Portland cement Wheelbarrow or large trug for mixing Water Stirring implement (spade, trowel, stick) Cooking oil / spray oil (to lubricate the moulds) Moulds (plastic plant pots, mixing bowls, washing up bowls etc.) preferably pairs of moulds, of similar shapes, one of which is approximately 25 percent smaller than the other, for forming inner and outer casings, e.g. two kitchen bowls that fit inside each other, with a small space (an inch or two) between them. Sticks to create drainage holes (optional) Wire brush or sandpaper (optional) Rubber gloves Dust mask Overalls/old clothes Decorative elements: cement pigment, sand, pebbles and stones (optional)

Gather all your materials. It’s a good idea to have a range of moulds, including a few small ones, so you can make use of all of your mixture. Put on your work clothes, mask and gloves – cement is corrosive, you do not want to touch it or breathe it in.

Step Two Mix your dry ingredients together in the following proportions: 1.5 parts perlite 1.5 parts peat moss 1 part Portland cement You can use vermiculite instead of perlite. While perlite resists water, vermiculite absorbs it, and the resulting vermiculite mix will be harder than a perlite one. You can use horticultural compost instead of peat moss. Crumble up any lumps in the peat moss or compost. If desired, you can add extra decorative elements to your planter. Sand, pebbles, or crushed rock all

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Step Six This is not essential, it is possible to make a planter with just one mould, but a pair of moulds is preferable, for better end results. Insert your inner mould on top of the hypertufa and press down firmly. Manipulate the mould until you are satisfied that the bottom and sides are even throughout and tap it to remove air bubbles. Place heavy weights or stones inside the mould to weigh it down.

Step Seven (optional) Allow the planter to dry for one or two days then remove it from the moulds. At this point the hypertufa mix is firming up but is still malleable, so you have an opportunity, should you wish, to modify and titivate the planter, manipulating its shape, trimming the edges, distressing or smoothing the surface with a wire brush or sandpaper etc. Remove the drainage sticks and leave the pot uncovered to finish curing.

Step Eight enhance the appearance, though they also increase the weight. You could also add powdered dyes, in natural shades or more vibrant colours.

Step Three Gradually stir in water, enough so the mixture just sticks together, and has a mud pie consistency. Mix it well and adjust the ingredients if necessary. You want to be able to form a ball of mixture in your hand that doesn’t ooze with water if you squeeze it.

Step Four Grease your mould then line it with the hypertufa mixture. Press the mixture firmly along the bottom and sides, creating a substantial wall, one to two inches thick. Bear in mind that the opening of the finished pot will be up to four inches smaller than your outer mould. Also, not only does the mould need to be of a sufficient size, it should also be a suitable shape. One that has sloped sides and is free from protrusions and undercuts will allow you to remove the mould from the finished pot easily and smoothly, with less risk of damage.

Leave the planters outside, exposed to the elements, so they can cure, for three or four weeks. You need to reduce the alkalinity of the cement before using it for house plants. This will occur naturally, if it rains, or you can rinse your pots with a watering can. You could also add vinegar to the water to further reduce the alkalinity.

Step Nine Fill your pot with compost, then enjoy finishing your creation by adding a selection of alpines. Place in a sunny location, and remember that even drought tolerant plants will need occasional watering when in a planter (but water sparingly). Your hypertufa pot will be very weather resistant and will survive rain, ice and snow of eve very cold winters (down to - 30 °C/−22 °F). However, to best protect it, raise it off the ground during winter and don’t leave it under any overhangs where it will be drenched. If you would like to try making hypertufa pots but would like a little guidance or would rather keep the mess away from your own garden, we run workshops here at Le Jardin des Espiemonts. Send an email to lejardindesespiemonts@gmail.com

Step Five Make a few small holes in the bottom for drainage, either by simply using your finger, or by inserting small sections of sticks, the same depth as your walls. These can be popped out when you remove your moulds in a few days’ time.

for further information.

John and Debbie (Le Jardin des Espiemonts) lejardindesespiemonts@gmail.com, 05 63 64 68 76, www.lejardindesespiemonts.fr

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


10 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

A Tale of

Two Towns For the next few editions we are going to take a look at two towns or villages in the region. Hopefully getting some insight from the people living there and an idea of what goes on. If you want to get ‘your town’ talked about then please do contact us.

In this edition we’re going find out a bit more about Issigeac and Montpezat de Quercy.

ISSIGEAC Ariel view of Issigeac

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Quick response – No call out fee Issigeac is one of the earliest (and loveliest) villages in the Dordogne, and is close to the border with the Cabinet Sou l ié Lot et Garonne. It was founded by Clovis in the CALL US 7th century. He’d promised his wife that he’d found a monastery if he won his battle against the Visigoths. He won, and the monastery was built soulie.eric46@orange.fr and the village developed around it. The village is mainly circular in its layout, It was www.avisdiagnostic.com actually constructed in concentric circles following the pattern of the ‘Bouyricou’ a traditional basket U.K./France van deliveries still found locally. There’s been evidence of man living here since around 200 000 years BC. Then there U.K./France van deliveries was a much evidenced Roman occupation and the Fourgon obligatory skirmishes with the British over the centuries. In 1351, the Bishops of Sarlat took possession Conclusions Ltd. Tel: 0044 7841 220 980 of the town and a church was built by Bishop, e-mail: jayseabea@hotmail.com Armand de Gontaut-Biron. This wasn’t the beginning www.fourgonconlusions.co.uk Tel: 0044 7841 220 980 of a glorious epoch as the religious wars then Tel: 0044 7841e-mail: 220 980 caused huge destruction and the town was jayseabea@hotmail.com effectively laid low until the 17th century. Email: jayseabea@hotmail.com www.fourgonconlusions.co.uk There’s much of the town that’s worthy of www.fourgonconclusions.co.uk architectural note. Here are just a few examples.

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The Palace of the Bishops of Sarlat and The Church of St Félicien

Brocante-Issigeac

Medieval Day

The Palace of the Bishops of Sarlat Built in 1660 on the site of the Abbey destroyed during the religious wars. An impressive building, occasionally referred to as ‘sombre’, however, its façade is softened by elegant brick turrets. The Tourist Office is located on the ground floor. The House of Tithes In medieval times a tax (worth 1/10 of crops) was due to the church. This is where the tax was gathered, so this ancient building with its astonishing roof was quite simply the local tax office. The Church of St Félicien It took almost 40 years to build this church, it was completed in 1527. Unusually (for this region) it’s an example of late Gothic architecture. There is also a more Romanesque, octagonal bell tower. La Maison des Têtes Dating from the late 15th century this unusual façade is embellished with grotesque wooden heads. Definitely worth looking up as you walk by! Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


12 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Issigeac makes the most of its medieval heritage and has several events during the summer. Including, hog roasts, tours of the village, medieval dancing and short plays, and the atmospheric Son et Lumiere (Sound and Light) history tour of the village take place on the 4th/18th July and the 8th/22nd August. The Medieval Day is the 30th July when the village welcomes many artisans and entertainers and finishes the day with a banquet in the Place de Chateau where everyone is well fed, entertained and there is a with a magnificent firework show. The regular village market takes place every Sunday morning and in the summer this virtually takes over the whole town. During the summer months there are ‘nightmarkets’ every Thursday night, and then for a chance to discover even more local foods, sit down and enjoy some locally produced foods and wines at the Marché Gourmands evenings, each Friday. Other events worth noting are the ‘Issigeac en Bodega’ a celebration of food, drink and music – on the 9th July. On the 16th of July there’s the ever popular Foire Aux Paniers, a celebration of willow-weaving and basket making, a chance for the children to have a go and some lovely finished products to admire/buy. August 5th/6th sees Antiques and Brocante. There could hardly be a more historical setting for such ancient/vintage and collectable items. Something rather special and new for this year are the visites guidées nocturnes aux lampions (guided visits by lamp light), 4/07, 11/07 & 25/07 at 9.45pm and 1/08, 15/08 & 29/08 at 9.15pm then 5/09 & 12/09 at 9pm. A chance to learn more about the history and stories of the town on a walking lamp-lit tour. The tour is in French but there will be leaflets in English to explain all about it. Guided tours of the town take place, from the Tourist Office, on Thursdays at 10am. Further information on medieval events can be obtained by emailing: lesmenestrels.issigeac@gmail.com For more information on any of these events, the village, its history and indeed its many local artists you should visit the Tourist Office. Or see: www.pays-bergerac-tourisme.com and follow the links to ‘villages-pittoresques-etbastides’ Picture credit: BIT Issigeac Thanks to Margaret Collins for information provided. The Quercy Local • July - August 2017

La Maison des Têtes

House of Tithes


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 13

ISSIGEAC Sylvie and Hervé Rodot look forward to welcoming you to their lovely restaurant where the dining room has a bit of a train theme; or to their floral terrace for a lovely summer meal. The restaurant is about 800m outside the medieval village of Issigeac in lovely leafy countryside.

Opening Hours: 12h15 – 13h45 19h15 – 20h45 Open all year and every day except (all day) Thursday and Sunday evening You are advised to call and make a reservation Le Relais de l’Ancienne Gare - Sylvie & Hervé Rodot - Route d’Eymet - 24560 Issigeac 05 53 58 70 29 relais.anciennegare@orange.fr www.relais-anciennegare.com Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


14 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

A Tale of

Two Towns continued...

MONTPEZAT DE QUERCY The medieval village of Montpezat de Quercy is to be found equidistant between Montauban and Cahors and is the first place you come to having crossed from the Lot into Tarn and Garonne on the pretty road from Castelnau Montratier. As you look over the patchwork of apple and plum orchards from the ramparts, on a clear day you can often glimpse the snow-covered peaks of the Pyrenees to the south and, unlike many bastide villages in this region, you don’t need crampons and an oxygen tank to benefit from these wonderful views. The village was sacked by the English during the 100 years’ war and suffered badly during 1939-45 when the Germans burnt 13 farms – sometimes with the occupants trapped inside – as a dry run for the atrocity enacted shortly afterwards at Oradour-surGlane. Possibly one of the smallest, but very moving, museums in France dedicated to both world wars can be found in a pigeoneer next to the school which is open in July and August. The first mention of Montpezat appears in the 7th century. The family Montpezat, ruled locally until 1250 after which they were accused of Cathar-heresy and were replaced by the Prés family. This family gave the town of Montpezat one of its great historical characters – Cardinal Pierre des Prés. Born in 1280, Pierre des Prés was the youngest in his family and his parents were anxious that he join the priesthood. He was called (aged 26) to the service of Pope John XXII (Jacques Duez, who was a native of Cahors) and during his lifetime he held many positions of high office and offered great loyalty to the Pope.

He quickly became Vice-Chancellor of the Roman Church and led a distinguished career of over 45 years until he died of the plague in 1361. Pierre des Prés arranged for the construction of Montpezat’s best known building, the Saint Martin Collegiate Church. It is here that he is laid to rest in accordance with the terms of his will which stated: “Let my heart remain in Avignon and my body in Montpezat”. Other notable things of interest in the village include: • The Flemish Tapestries – 5 drapes that have hung at the choir’s end of the Collegiate, since 1520. They depict the life and legend of St Martin of Tours. These tapestries have recently been returned to Belgium for restoration and are due to be re-hung in late June. • The house of the Canons of the 15th and 17th centuries which is to be found behind the Collegiate. • The Ursuline Convent of the 17th century which is now the village school The village has retained its medieval appearance and has been well-maintained with its narrow-cobbled streets, corbelled brick houses and Gothic arcades supported by heavy stone pillars. Within the commune six further churches are to be found – all beautifully restored and cared for by the commune. The best of which is to be found hidden in the forest at Saux with its 14th century frescos. In the undulating countryside, mixed crop fields and cypress trees around Montpezat which is somewhat reminiscent of Tuscany, one can spot beautiful

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NEW SHOP OPENED 20TH JUNE Crafts, Art, Gifts, Decorative Pieces for the Home and Gourmet Groceries You are welcome to come and browse Pauline Saliba, 1 boulevard des fossés, 82270 Montpezat de Quercy 0563306584 contact@montpezart.fr

Lovely restaurant in the heart of Montpezat de Quercy (Recommended by The Quercy Local’s Valerie on a recent visit to the town) Full opening hours on the website. Marie des Brebis

examples of white Quercy Blanc farmhouses and barns that stand out in their verdant surroundings and bear testimony this region’s rich agricultural heritage. The vibrancy of any French village in these parts can be measured in a number of ways: by its fetes, its associations, its church choir, its range of shops and restaurants, its school and whether or not it has a petrol station, a post office, a fire station, a bank, a pharmacy, a tourist office, a weekly market and so on. This may sound obvious but these provide the heartbeat of any community. However, financial pressures and the emergence of electronic banking and communications Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


16 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Restaurant recommended by Valerie

Typical local stone house

has led to many organisations questioning their presence in small outlying communities and, if one closes, others tend to follow which leads to a steady decline in the fortunes of those that remain. Unlike many villages that suffer from an aging and declining population, Montpezat can boast a population increase of over 10% over the past ten years as the availability and price of building land are attractive enough for the village both to retain and attract younger people from outside to move into the existing housing stock or to build new homes. Employment opportunities tend to be linked to the various retail or agricultural, fruit growing and winemaking sectors but there is some light industry and even a salmon smoking business. However, with the proximity of Cahors and Montauban, the inhabitants of Montpezat are content to commute to these cities where there are greater job possibilities whilst benefitting from the quality of life that comes from living in a rural community. Population growth within the commune means that the sustainability of shops, restaurants, the café and market is enhanced. The village can support not one but two doctors, two hairdressers, three garages, associations that attract more members which in turn lead a greater number of people that can be called upon to organise and participate in the various fêtes, vide greniers, marchés gourmands, repas dansants, sardinades, lotos, randonnées, etc. This ‘multiplier’ effect has led to Montpezat to continue to exist as a thriving commune and a shining example to other rural villages that are seeking ways to halt their decline.

In recent years, in addition to the bi-annual Wine Festival, two new annual events have greatly enhanced the summer social calendar – Bleu Trompette, a jazz festival that takes place 19-22 July and the widelyacclaimed son et lumière on 14-18 August, Marie des Brebis, in the tiny hamlet of Gandoulès. When added to the annual stage production in the village theatre in April and the multitude of concerts, exhibitions and lectures held throughout the year, the village also enjoys a rich array of cultural events. Also during July and August, the open air swimming pool and tennis court at La Faillel are open to everyone and there are Marchés Gourmands during the long summer evenings nearly every week where you can buy food and wine from the many traiteurs and domaines present and can join the locals at long trestle tables that have been set up on the tree-lined Avenue des Ecoles. For more information go to: https://tourisme-montpezat-de-quercy.com. In common with the Quercy region as a whole, the inhabitants of Montpezat are incredibly welcoming to outsiders and ex pats of all nationalities are made to feel welcome as integration into village life is made so simple – far more so than, say, if someone relocated to a village in the English countryside……. Speaking or trying to speak French undoubtedly helps, as does the use/employment of local artisans, regardless of nationality, as this keeps the money in le coin to the benefit of all. By Roger and Sue Mortimer. From Molles, Montpezat where they let two wonderful holiday homes. www.mollesmontpezat.com/

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 17

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


18 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

In this edition we have at least 16 pages of things going on/things to do over the summer...

A truly village affair – la fête

A professional theatre production and a free afternoon of family games and activities are among the highlights at this year’s fête de village in Touffailles (82190). Taking place from Friday, July 21, to Sunday, July 23, the fête offers a full programme with all the traditional activities as well as some new attractions. New this year, the marquee will be playing host on the Friday evening to La Compagnie Nansouk, a professional theatre group, who will be performing Arlequin poli par l’amour – which might translate as Arlequin, refined by love. A romantic comedy, the play is a classic Pierre De Marivaux piece that has been revisited and brought to the stage by Charly Blanche of Nansouk. The story is based around a powerful sorceress who is engaged to Merlin but who falls in loves with Arlequin. The evening of theatre will kick off with an apéritif reception from 8pm, with the performance starting at 9pm. The piece will last 70 minutes and is appropriate for anyone aged 12 and above. Tickets are priced at 12e. Also new this year is an afternoon of family games at the marquee from 3pm to around 7pm on the Sunday. Organised by the ludothèque Jeux & Compagnie from Montcuq, this activity will be free and open to all (English and French spoken). On offer will be a range of traditional and modern family board games, traditional wooden games and

more, with all age ranges catered for (including adults!). Experts will be on hand from Jeux & Compagnie to recommend games, explain rules and even play alongside you. The Sunday evening also features the usual apéritif from 7pm or so, which this year will see a traditional bandas music group, followed by a meal (at around 8pm) and a free fireworks display from around 11pm. Other highlights at this year’s fête include a disco night from 10pm until late in the marquee on the Saturday. It is free entry and there will be a bar. The Sunday morning, meanwhile, will see a fishing competition for children aged 16 and under at the lake in Touffailles (from 9:30am & competitors must have their own equipment), followed at 12pm by a free apéritif at the marquee for Touffailles residents. For more information on any of the activities or to reserve for the theatre or Sunday evening meal, call 09 67 46 71 20 (office hours, English spoken). Président Comité des Fêtes de Touffailles

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 19

Sans titre-1 1

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 24/05/2017 14:32:132017


20 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

comes to Quercy This summer, award-winning London-based theatre company Antic Disposition return to Quercy for a thirteenth year with a new production of Shakespeare’s darkly comic historical drama, Richard III. Antic Disposition’s annual Shakespeare productions in Quercy are now firmly established as one of the most popular cultural events in the summer calendar. Richard III follows the company’s highly acclaimed First World War adaptation of Henry V in 2015, and last year’s riotous, Hollywood-inspired The Comedy of Errors. Shakespeare’s Richard III – made famous on screen by Laurence Olivier in 1955, Ian McKellen in 1995 and Benedict Cumberbatch in the BBC series The Hollow Crown – tells the story of the charming but villainous king’s rise to power. Antic Disposition promise a fast-moving and accessible evening of theatre – a perfect blend of dark comedy and powerful drama. As the story begins, the Wars of the Roses are over and King Edward IV rules England. But his brother, Richard, is in no mood to celebrate. With murder, deceit and dark humour as his weapons, Richard overcomes friends and foes alike to seize the crown. But as the body count rises, he soon learns that a throne founded on blood offers little security. Richard III will be performed in eleven stunning open-air locations around the region: the picturesque town squares of Lauzerte, Monflanquin and Monpazier; an idyllic walled garden in Lherm; a wooded glade in Beauville; amongst the stone ruins of the abbey in Saint-Avit-Sénieur and the castle in Eymet; under the ancient wooden halle in Belvès; against the backdrop of spectacular vistas in Montcuq and Domme; and in the intimate surroundings of Puy l’Evêque’s charming open-air theatre. Before arriving in France, the production will visit six of England’s most historic cathedrals, including Leicester Cathedral, where Richard III was recently reinterred following his discovery buried under a nearby car park. Following the French tour, Richard III returns to London for a three-week run in the ancient Temple Church. Tickets for Richard III are already selling fast, so do book early to avoid disappointment. Tickets are free for children sixteen and under, making the show a perfect night of entertainment for the whole family.

Richard III will be performed around the Lot and Dordogne valleys from 2 – 14 August 2017 2 August 3 August 4 August 5 August 7 August 8 August 9 August 11 August 12 August 13 August 14 August

Domme Beauville Monflanquin Belvès Eymet Monpazier Lauzerte Saint-Avit-Sénieur Lherm Montcuq Puy l’Evêque

Jardin de la Rode Place du Carré Place des Arcades La Halle Jardin de Cadix Place des Cornières Place des Cornières Abbey ruins Centre of the village Esplanade Nino Ferrer Théâtre de Verdure

Tickets: e20 – e40 Free for children 16 and under (maximum two per adult) For more information and to book tickets visit www.ad-tour.com

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


ADVERTORIAL

Boogie in Le Boulve “BRUCE SPRINGSTEEN PLAYS LE BOULVE!

Ed Sheeran breaks U.S. tour to play the Boogie!” Well… maybe not this year but you’ve got to admit it made you look! Now read on... Halfway between Montcuq and Prayssac Le Boulvé has played host to this concert/picnic event for the last six years featuring musicians from around the region. This year the date is Friday 11th August – the village square is set with tables and chairs and decked with lights. Come along and bring a picnic and we’ll put on a great concert with three excellent bands. We’ll provide the wine, water and some soft drinks for the kids all free of charge.

all in a folk/rock style which makes you want get on your feet or grab a guitar and join in.

First to play will be Karima and Olivier a duo who play in a variety of styles and to open the show they’ll play for us some wonderfully accomplished jazz. www.karimaetolivier.fr

We start at 8pm and finish towards midnight, depending how many encores you demand! The price is 15 euros for adults (no charge for children under 12). It’s a great French setting, music you know and love, and great company – exactly what we all enjoy about summer in France. Last, but not least, his year we are donating all the proceeds from the Boogie to Cancer Support France.

English duo Rag Mama Rag will be next on stage. Making use of flawless playing techniques on a wide range of instruments they have gradually and consistently built up their reputation as one of Europe’s finest Country Blues acts. Their performances are superb and we’re delighted to welcome them back to the Boogie this year. www.rag-mama-rag.com

Reservations before 9th August if possible to mikejones46800@gmail.com or leave a message on 05 65 22 71 64 – Only 240 places are available so do book as soon as you can! See you there! Boogie in Le Boulvé is organised by L’Association Quercy Musique and sponsored by Caumon Grillages (Gates and Fencing Le Boulvé) and Delmouly Tanguy (Citroen Garage and Domestic Fuel supplier Montcuq).

The headliners this year are the French group Les Pattos whose eclectic mix of songs and enthusiastic style make them the absolute perfect band for the Boogie. They’ll go from Donovan to Dublin, Chuck Berry to the Clash and Country to Blues – Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 23

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


24 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Walking tour in English of St Antonin Noble Val: Discover how people lived and worked, and how their lives were affected by war, religion and the forces of nature over 1000 years of history. Thurs. 20th & 27th July and Thurs. 3rd & 10th August. Leaving from in front of the Tourist Office at 11am. 5 euro/adult Office de Tourisme Intercommunal, 10 rue de la Pélisserie, 82140 St Antonin Noble Val. Tel: 05 63 30 63 47 http://tourisme-saint-antonin-noble-val.com, www.gorges-aveyron-tourisme.com/

Beauville’s 24th Franco-Britannique pétanque competition Since 1993 this has been a popular annual event at Beauville. It is held on every 14th July, and has an interesting history and format. The competition was started in 1993 by Nick Twilley and his English and French friends as a way of meeting and sharing a sporting event particularly between the British and French communities, for the last few years it has been run by the Tourist Office, however this year Bon Coeur will take up the organisation of the day. The event is sponsored by the local artisans and restaurants and we are launching a website www.bonsoeufs.fr to support and promote those who contribute to this – this will be a handy reference too. The event has broadened to include many other nationalities who are welcome to join one or other team. The pétanque teams are made up of one English (speaking) player and one French player paired together on arrival, the knockout format then continues to the final of the main competition. After this the winning teams are shuffled and the two British players join forces to play against the two French players for the Grand Finale. Over the years the French teams have won more times that the British – but we keep trying! After this there is prize-giving and normally a meal under the arches at the Midi restaurant. There will be some changes this year as for the first time the event is on the same day as the Friday Night Market. The competition is ‘amicale’ – and there is no charge to enter – it’s played on the terrains at Beauville’s Place du Carré. If required, boules are available to borrow, and all abilities of players are welcome. For added conviviality an English bar will be serving beer, as well as a French bar during the afternoon – so come and compare beverages! Traditionally there have been special tee-shirts available for the players and we plan to re-instate this in 2017.

If you are interested, please contact chsmiskin@aol. com for more information, practice your boules (there will be some practice afternoons at Beauville), and do come along on the day (registration starts at 1.30 pm & play! Bon Coeur is a charity based in Beauville that raises funds for a variety of good causes – contact us through face book – ‘Bon Coeur’, boncoeur@hotmail.co.uk, or via our boutique in Beauville – open Tuesday – Friday afternoon 2 – 4pm and Friday / Sunday 10 – 12 noon.

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 25

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


quercylocal croisières2017.pdf

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On the canal or the river Tarn sample the delights of gliding on the water to cool yourself during the summer. Tourist boats on the canal and the Tarn, or electric boats, pedalo or canoes for hire. Moissac : 70 km from Toulouse, 1 hour from Cahors

www.tourisme.moissac.fr

Cruises

Moissac in

Celebrating its 10th anniversary, Les Heures Musicales d’Aujols (46090) was founded by the British conductor and Aujols resident Martin Yates, in collaboration with Aujols Culture et Loisirs. It has rapidly become one of the most enjoyable chamber music festivals of its genre. Its reputation for presenting international artists of the highest calibre, in the stunning setting of the Eglise St. Jean-Baptiste, has ensured its success. This year the virtuoso pianist Victor Sangiorgio opens the Festival on Wednesday 19th July, with works to include Bach, Clementi, Schubert, Liszt and Gershwin; Anna Noakes, the internationally renowned flautist, is joined by harpist Hugh Webb on Fri. 21st July; and singers Elizabeth Roberts, Marie Elliott, Alexander James Edwards and Jan Capinski join forces with Sinfonia d’Amici under the baton of Harry Ogg to give two consecutive performances of Puccini’s opera Madame Butterfly, in a new atmospheric setting close to the Eglise St. Jean-Baptiste on Saturday 22nd & Sunday 23rd July. All start at 8.30 pm. In addition to the concerts, there will be a Young & Amateur Musicians’ Workshop on Thurs. 20th July where pupils are tutored by the professionals, culminating in a concert given by all at 6.00 pm.

www.aujols-music.com The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


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Open July and August every day from 9am to 7pm and September from 9am to 6pm, at 70 km from Toulouse, 1 hour from Cahors... Inscrit au Patrimoine mondial par l'UNESCO Chemins de Saint-Jacquesde-Compostelle en France

www.tourisme.moissac.fr

La plage aux

PTÉROSAURES®

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A thousand year old Abbey, the source of Romanesque Art English audioguides available all year In the Abbey shop many books in English on the Way to Saint James and on the Heritage are available.

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A WINDOW ON THE JURASSIC WORLD GUIDED TOURS IN ENGLISH on Monday & Friday at 12 pm Booking recommended: 05.65.23.32.48 or 05.65.53.20.65 More information at www.plageauxpterosaures.fr Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


28 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

PLANÈTE SWING! The commune of Maxou (46090) is home to two small villages, set in scenic valleys about 10 km north of Cahors. Despite the commune only having a population of 250 souls, it is also home to two lovely 10th/12th century churches, beautifully restored with the help of our association Eglises et Patrimoine. We have organised concerts in the churches every summer for the past 20 or so years, with professional players from across Europe and the US (from the UK too!), with a very high standard of musicianship. The concerts have covered the full range from Baroque to Jazz, always very well attended, and followed by the now traditional “soupe aux oignons” and “merveilles”. This year’s concert, on Wednesday 26th July, is by Planète Swing, a big band from Toulouse and Montauban, joined by vocalist Nathalie Hervouet for a delightful evening of jazz standards. Entrance is free, and we only ask for a donation to the association after the concert.

Weather permitting, and in view of the size of the band (18 musicians) and the likely audience, we will be holding the concert in the open air in a natural amphitheatre beside Maxou church (with a fall back marquee in case of rain). Kickoff is at 21:00

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 29

HAVE A BREAK, COME IN CŒUR DE BASTIDES Market under the hall of Villeréal Swimming lake in Lougra�e Cancon, capital of hazelnut

Cinema in english in Cas�llonnès

Monflanquin, one of the most beau�ful villages of France

Tourist Office Cœur de Bas�des Cancon - Cas�llonnès - Monflanquin - Villeréal +33 5 53 36 40 19 - www.coeurdebas�des.com

Place de la halle De 9H00 à 18H00 IPNS : Ne pas jeter sur la voie publique

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


30 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Trust MARK International Classical Guitar Festival

Puy l’Eveque July 18 to 22nd Puy l’Eveque’s guitar festival is growing, following its successful start last year. The four evenings of concerts look exciting indeed, with 6 international artists and two Latin American elements. The earlier evening activities in the open-air theatre have increased, including an exhibition of beautiful Alhambra guitars, lessons and free concerts by selected young players.

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You can book online with Festik as well as in the Tourist Offices. Buy a programme to really get the lowdown on the artists – and the many local supporters. But the build-up starts early: 6th July you can start with a Soirée Le Temps des Guitares at the Villa Malbec Lounge next to the Tourist Office in Cahors. The evening will have a Latin flavour and the guitars will be played by Teteu and Alexandra Whittingham – the two wonderful young soloists who played at the Cuvée 2016 festival. The Monday evening before the festival, 17th July, Le Temps des Guitars will be part of the launch of the L’été de Malbec in Puy l’Eveque. A ‘Dinambulation’ will be on offer – a walk down the old medieval town, enjoying guitar soloists in the Chapelle St Michel – artists from this year and last – you never know! To nourish body as well as soul, 3 restaurants will be offering one dish each (dare one suggest a restaurant crawl!) Look at the website: letempsdesguitares.com and book now. Look out for the posters and Gilles’ colourful guitars! The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 31

ART GALLERY WITH PERMANENT EXHIBITION OF 30 PAINTERS, SCULPTORS & VISUAL ARTISTS The gallery will be open until mid-December 2017 and all summer there will be new and exciting works shown from different artists

On the 23rd of September we look forward to welcoming you to the special viewing of the works of Hanna Sidorovitch Wednesday – Sunday 11am/7pm

art27galerie - rue du Porche - 82400 MONTJOI edwige capelle - 06.38.93.43.61 www.art27galerie.com art27galerie@gmail.com

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 33

ACTIVITIES, EVENTS, EXHIBITIONS AND MUCH MORE while the sun shines! By Jeanne McCaul, Lauzerte

“Summertime and the catfish are jumpin’”

W

ell, if you are a Quercynois, you will know that come Summer, we all jump to catch as many of the numerous activities and events on offer as possible and it is well worth keeping track of them. By the time this edition of the “Quercy Local” reaches you, the 2017 Summer season in the medieval town of Lauzerte will be well on its way. Thanks to the enthusiasm and hard work of its numerous associations and the support of the town’s authorities, an early start was already made in Spring. The 3rd annual edition of “Place aux Métiers d’art” took place over the first week-end in April, allowing over 50 participants to exhibit 25 different disciplines of arts and crafts in 12 historic venues in the old town. This event is one of 6181 similar manifestations that took place all over France as part of the “Journées européennes des métiers d’art”. In Lauzerte, the event is organised by the local “Association Culture et Animation de Lauzerte” (ACAL), which also organised the annual nature and plant day “Place aux fleurs” on Easter Sunday, April 16th. Meanwhile, April 10th saw the opening of the annual season of art exhibitions and sales at the “Espace Points de Vue”, under the auspices of the “Association Art Points de Vue” (APV) (www.artpointsdevue.com), established in 2012 at the request of the municipality, with the brief to organise exhibitions in Lauzerte, primarily at the Espace. During 2016 exhibitions at this venue attracted over 10.000 documented visitors from the four corners of the world. Formerly a convent and a convent school, the building was purchased in 2000 by the municipality and partly renovated. Its luminous space (+/- 400M2) and spectacular view over the valley, has made it a sought-after venue. Small wonder that the season of exhibitions and

number of artists selected by members of the APV, are on the increase. This season the gallery will be open until the end of November, a month once again dedicated to creations in wood. In 2017, the APV will have hosted a total of 36 independent artists, up from 28 last year, representing a variety of disciplines and themes, in addition to a collaboration with a guest association. During May, the Espace was ceded to an international association recognised by UNESCO, the “Les Sentinelles de la Paix” (http://www. lessentinellesdelapaix.org/), which aims to promote peace through art and who exhibited over 60 art works by as many of its members based in France and beyond. During July, the overall theme at the Espace will be creations primarily using metal. This choice ties in with open air demonstrations by around 20 metal artists, to take place on the “Promenade de l’Eveillé” during the week-end of 15 and 16th July and culminating in an auction sale. The organisers are the newly formed association “MetaliK’Art” (info at 06 80 59 09 32). The idea is that this too, will become an annual event in Lauzerte, as is the case in several other French towns, but not yet in the South-West. The “L’Embarcadère” (lembarcadere@outlook.fr) is another brand-new artists’ association created in Lauzerte this year. A half dozen artists, working in metal and wood, have taken up residence in the old bus repair garages at the entrance to Lauzerte, coming from the Aulery roundabout. The public is welcome to drop in and watch them at work. They will also be organising a weekly art market “Place aux artistes”, on the square in Lauzerte every Wednesday evening during July and August from 17h00 to 22h00. They will be doing demonstrations and offering creative activities for young and old. These activities are only a few examples reflecting the town’s intention to uphold and expand its reputation as an important tourist, artistic and cultural destination. After all, it is one of the officially designated most

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


34 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

beautiful towns in France, labelled at the entrance of the village: “Plus beau village de France”. Additionally, Lauzerte is on one of the famous pilgrim routes to Compostella in Spain, the “Chemin de Saint Jacques de Compostelle” and welcomes thousands of pilgrims and hikers every year. It also illustrates the importance of the commune as the only one in the region officially designated as a participant in a national, state subsidised, pilot program for the preservation and renewal of medieval town centres: “Aire de Valorisation de l’Architecture et du Patrimoine” (AVAP). The project is part of a campaign to protect and renovate the traditional, historic architecture of the region, in particular in the medieval towns, and to curb urban expansion which is detrimental to agriculture. Specifically, this means that, instead of sacrificing fertile agricultural land to urban building development, existing buildings will be preserved, but also upgraded to modern living standards, bringing back social, economic and cultural activity to formerly run-down town centres and motivating new appreciation among their residents. For this ideal to become a successful reality, a solid partnership is required between central government, local authorities, and local populations. This seems to be the case in the commune of Lauzerte, where

various subsidies are put to good use in the context of renovation and revitalising programs. The role of the non-profit associations and their members is clearly also essential in keeping things going. Membership is open to all, not only residents, but all who share similar values and enjoy visiting Lauzerte and its environs and participating in the activities on offer. All are welcome.

Practical information: As this article cannot possibly cover all events and activities, do not hesitate to visit regional and Lauzerte tourism office at: www.quercy-sud-ouest.com Opening times at the “Espace Points de Vue” in April, May, June, September, October and November are daily from 10h30 to 13h00 and 15h00 to 18h00 and until 19h00 in July and August. (see APV website for more details). Openings (vernissages) take place at 18h00 on the 1st of every month, regardless of the day of the week and are open to the public. The address is: 6 rue de la Barbacane, 82110 Lauzerte. Many eagle-eyed readers will have spotted that the wrong article appeared in the May edition about the Lauzerte Gallery – sorry for any confusion caused.

Music for summer evenings by the Orchestre du Centre Philharmonique The talented young singers and musicians of the Orchestre du Centre Philharmonique, under the baton of their musical director Richard Beswick, will be back again in late July with a series of concerts across the Lot, Lot-et-Garonne, and the Dordogne. This year we are again planning a varied mix of popular classics; arias from opera and operetta but also lots of wellknown orchestral ‘hits’ which will give the members of the orchestra a chance to demonstrate their brilliance and versatility (and in one case, maybe their composing skills!). They will have a terrific time, and we hope you will too. The programme is still being worked on – Mozart and Verdi seem certain among the operatic works, and Dvorak is a possibility – so please go to our website (see below) as the time approaches for more details. Please come and join us – even in locations where we don’t specifically mention bringing a picnic, if it’s a nice day do it anyway; you will find a corner to set up a table, open a bottle and get into the mood for some wonderful music!

Orchestra and Soloists of the Orchestre du Centre Philharmonique Direction : Richard Beswick Soloists : Marie-Caroline Kfoury and others Friday 21 July: Bergerac (24100), le Temple, 20.30 Saturday 22 July: Castillonnes (47330), Cours de la Mairie, 20.30 Sunday 23 July: Moirax (47310), Priory, 20.30 Monday 24 July: Tombeboeuf (47380), Château de Boisverdun, 20.30 (if bad weather, in the Salle des Fêtes at Tombeboeuf) Tuesday 25 July: Puy l’Eveque (46700), Château du Cayrou, 20.30 (bring your picnic from 19.00 onwards: if bad weather, in the Salle des Fêtes at Puy l’Eveque) Wednesday 26 July: Duras (47210) at the Château, 20.30 Thursday 27 July: Penne d’Agenais (47140) at the Grange de Nègre, 20.30 Adults e20, 12 to 25 years e10, less than 12 years free – tickets at the entrance: reservations on 05 53 01 76 08 or via our website www.ocp-verteuil.com. Enquiries in

English 05 65 36 45 98 or martin.milnes@nordnet.fr

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 35

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


36 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

BEAUTIFUL CHALK BASED PAINT

Beautiful chalk based paint, 150 stunning colours, paint for every project, easy to use. Ideal for painting furniture and so much more. Regular workshops now taking place. For more details about the range please call: Resa on 06 40 05 85 00 | resa@chalk-paints.com | www.chalk-paints.com

Anglican Church of Midi-Pyrénées & Aude Update from the Cahors Congregation

For detailed information visit our website: www.churchinmidipa.org All services are held at Centre Paroissial, 75 av J Lurçat, Terre Rouge, 46000 Cahors

‘Each man should give what he has decided in his heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.’ (2 Corinthians 9:7) The liturgically ‘quiet time’ continues throughout the summer months and provides opportunity for a number of outdoor fundraising events. A great deal of fun, enjoyment and companionship are had at these events and the funds raised go towards the support of our charities: The Smile Train, Cleft Lip and Palate Children’s charity (www.smiletrain.org.uk) and USPG – a church based charity working in direct partnership with Anglican Churches around the world (www.weareus.org.uk). The Fun and Fundraising Events for July and August rest of this year are: Sunday 9 July – A Very Secret History of Clocks and Watches – after the service of Holy Communion at Terre Rouge, Cahors. Stay on after Church, have a coffee and then listen to Nick Sutton give a fascinating insight into his passion of Clocks and Watches. In his own words it will be “a light canter through the history of clocks and watches, including what your wrist watch was up to when you weren’t looking and what made it tick”. Participation fee of e15 will include lunch, dessert and refreshments. PLEASE NOTE: We welcome to Cahors, The Venerable Meurig Williams, the Archdeacon of France. He will preside at our Communion Service and stay on for the talk and lunch. For further details please contact: gaynor-s@churchinmidipa.org Sunday 6 August – Trumpets, Organs and Trains after the service of Morning Worship at Terre Rouge, Cahors. Stay on after the service, have a coffee and then be entertained by Howard Bould and Ray Boyd. Howard will give an illustrated talk on his involvement with the Churnet Valley Railway and Ray and Howard will provide some appropriate musical accompaniment! Afterwards, enjoy a delicious Ploughman’s lunch.

Participation fee of e15 will include lunch and refreshments. For all details contact: geraldine-b@churchinmidipa.org Service of Baptism ‘Jesus said: Let the little children come to me, and do not stop them; for it is to such as these that the kingdom of heaven belongs’ (Matthew 19:14) Many of us have families visiting during the summer months with children and babies and we are always delighted when someone asks about Baptism for their baby or child while in France. We can help prepare for this important day. Baptism is open to anyone and it costs nothing. For more information, contact the Chaplain or one of the Assistant Chaplains who will advise on what is needed for the Service of Baptism. Morning Worship – A Family Service ‘For I have chosen him, that he may command his children and his household after him to keep the way of the Lord’ (Genesis 18:19) Worship is an essential part of being a Christian. Every two months, on the first Sunday there is a Morning Worship service in our Church at Terre Rouge in Cahors. The next one will be at 10 am on August 7. It is a family service and the children are most welcome (as at all our services) and toys are available at the side of the church. There is an irresistible impulse to pray for those whom we love; and not only to pray for them, but with them too. Please join us as we sing songs of praise to God and bring all our joys and sorrows to Him in our prayers.

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


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SPECIALIST IN Travertine, Wall and Floor Tiling, Plaster Boarding, Plastering, General Building & New Builds References available Mobile Phone: 06 12 82 49 04 Evening Phone 05 63 29 27 31 Email: stephen.tyler@sfr.fr Siret: 802 145 706 00015 The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 39

LOOKING FOR A LOVELY STONE HOUSE, RESTORED AND WITH GREAT VIEWS? MAYBE SOMETHING RATHER LIKE THIS ONE? THEN CONTACT US AS WE’VE MANY MORE TO SHOW YOU. Mouly immobilier is a specialist, expert property agency who have been an authority in property sales for half a century. Three successive generations have resulted in us having great knowledge, dynamism and a reputation for quality and reliability. We pride ourselves on treating everyone as individuals. We cover an area from the traditionally named Quercy down to the Lot et Garonne, the North of the Lot and across to the Tarn et Garonne. Our area includes some of the prettiest towns and villages in France and the most beautiful countryside in the whole of the Quercy area. You can contact our team by phone on 05 65 35 21 42 or by email: agence.girma.mouly@wanadoo.fr You can also visit our website: www.mouly-immobilier.com Mouly Immobilier, 55 Bd Gambetta, 46000 CAHORS Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


40 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Some thoughts on providing child-friendly, holiday accommodation and then an alternative way of holidaying with little ones. The thoughts of two experienced mothers.

Children on holiday!

Domaine de la Dolce A peaceful family retreat in the heart of South West France

When we first visited Domaine de la Dolce back in 2010 we immediately saw the potential for a wonderful family friendly holiday destination where parents can relax as their children enjoy the company of new found friends. So, in late 2011 we took the plunge, sold our house in the UK and moved with our then 4 ½ year old daughter to South West France. It really was not very difficult to decide between the English and the French countryside! But as any move to a foreign country (one with a lot of bureaucracy)… the first year was not the easiest one. Certainly not for our daughter and there were many tears which made me doubt this decision. But fast forward to today and we have integrated into our community and love our life away from traffic, crowds and noise. I am a goldsmith by trade and used to run a jewellery gallery/workshop in Marylebone, London. My main

commission work were engagement rings… therefore I was part of a very special moment in the life of so many of my customers. Now I provide for a very special time in the life of my families… their holiday together! I believe happy children = happy parents! Being a parent myself I know how important it is to go on “child-friendly” holidays, where parents of babies, small children and toddlers are provided with all the essentials (and the little extras), so that children as well as mums and dads alike have a wonderful, relaxing and stress-free time. It has to be a safe and child friendly environment for the youngest guests to allow them imaginative play, the possibility to run free and wild, to play amongst nature with their new found friends; a peaceful and tranquil “Home from Home” for Mums and Dads to unwind and relax from the hectic daily life; a perfect base to discover and explore the outstanding beauty of the Lot region, a department in South West France which is largely unspoiled by the passage of time, with beautiful landscapes and dramatic gorges. It is also being widely regarded as gastronomic paradise. The region has a micro climate that is drier

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 41

and warmer than those to the north like the Dordogne or Limousin. Springtime and autumn are therefore wonderful months to visit, ideal for families staying with babies. The three gîtes/self-catering cottages here at La Dolce are single-level accommodations configured specifically with babies, small children and toddlers in mind. All the essential items for the little ones are provided for… so parents can leave some space in the car for the wine to take home! Guests find a welcome basket with local products on arrival and some basic essentials to get them started, while my little guests receive a special present, appropriate to their age. Pre-arrival shopping can be arranged and if parents do not wish to cook on the evening of arrival, they can also order a quiche freshly made by a lady at our local market. Starting this year there will also be a kids club on offer……giving parents the opportunity to completely relax and enjoy the pool or get pampered with a massage or manicure/pedicure at the comfort of their gîte. Most importantly, children should feel happy and safe. The indoor playroom is a kid’s heaven, with a fantastic collection of toys for all ages, plus books, games, DVD’s, dressing up clothes, a huge blackboard for lots of creativity (not only by the children), Playmobil

and table football. Outside the children’s paradise continues with a huge meadow in front of the gîtes. While the children run around to let off steam, play in the tipi or Hide and Seek, they are in full view of their parents who in the meantime can relax on their private patio with a cup of tea or coffee or, later in the day, a glass of wine or beer. In addition, there is the shady playground in the woodlands to discover, the kids can enjoy a splash and a swim in the fenced and heated salt-filtered pool or maybe try a game of table tennis. Set among rolling hills and farmland, where the vineyards of the Cahors wine region mingle with the tranquil oak and chestnut forests of the Perigord, Domaine de la Dolce is a peaceful family friendly holiday destination in the heart of South West France. All you will hear during the day are the birds in the many trees surrounding the gîtes, the laughter of happy children… and in the evening maybe the hooting owl. Marion Autrum Domaine de la Dolce www.domainedeladolce.com Awarded three stars by “Atout France”, the official French body for hotel, gîte and chambre d’hôte classification, in 2013

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


42 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

…continuing our short theme of ‘children on holiday’

Campsites, Campervans and oh yes …Children

A

s I emerged from the campsite shower block on a blissfully warm spring morning I began to plan the day ahead with a smile on my face. We would have breakfast outside, pack our bags and walk into the old town of Carcassonne where we would explore the historic walls and dissuade the kids from buying yet another sword. We would then load up the camper and set off to our next destination singing songs along the way admiring the beautiful French countryside. This plan abruptly ended when I reached our plot and my husband announced that overnight we had managed to leave the fridge on the wrong setting and the battery was dead. The next 30 minutes were a bit of a blur. My husband found a man with a van who gave us a jumpstart allowing us to disrupt our neighbours breakfast with exhaust fumes from our very old (but much loved) camper. We wolfed down our own breakfast and loaded up in record time before hitting the road, and thus our holiday began. As a family we’re seasoned campers. However, after one too many trips with our little car stuffed to the brim with tents, sleeping bags, most of our kitchen and bags of kids’ toys, we decided to invest in a campervan. Our purchase, a Citroen C35, custom fitted by its one previous owner, puts a smile on our face every time we see it. Yes it’s old (we’re talking the 70s here) and yes it’s slow (again…we’re maxing 70!) but you know what they say, it’s all about the memories. As we’re forced to take the slow lane our first trip to Arcachon took us through the autumnal vineyards of Cahors. On our recent trip back from Gruissan we meandered through a stunning national forest, and this summer we’re planning a coastal route down in Spain. It’s amazing how much you discover just by avoiding the motorway. Travelling with two young boys is fun for all but obviously has its challenges at times. Although we’d love to do a bit of wild camping we’re not equipped with a bathroom so for now we stick to campsites for those all-important loo breaks and shower dunks when they come running in from the beach. With the camper being so slow we have to double our estimated arrival time and factor in lots of breaks along the way.

We love travelling out of peak tourist season when campsites are not so packed. It allows us to be a little more spontaneous as you don’t always have to book in advance and can stay for as long or as short as you’d like. For a family that loves to travel the campervan is also a cheaper option as reasonable campsite rates and the ability to cook our own food keeps costs low. Luckily France is full of good quality campsites in beautiful locations. We started the Alphabet Adventures to encourage us out and about, finding activities and places to visit for every letter of the alphabet. If you spot us on our adventures give us a beep or a wave! Becky Brown You can follow Becky’s family Blog at www.ruedubelvedere.com

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 43

The Hat Blocker There’s no tool that can replace the hand and eye to judge the curve on a shape....’ ‘Come see me shape the lime wood. Discover the shapes created from designer’s imagination and my hands working to make them. Come and smell the fragrance of the wood shavings. This craft of mine needs people to find out all about it. I’m waiting to see you..’ says Didier Laforest.

New to Causssade – the city of hats! Welcome to Caussade and now, most importantly, to the workshop, shop and showroom of Didier Laforest. A magical place embodying the very spirit of wood, felt and straw in premises, planned, designed and managed by Didier himself. Didier is a Hat Blocker! What’s a Hat Blocker? Well you may not have considered this before but this trade is actually critical to the manufacture of hats. They create, with great skill, the wooden formers on which hats are made. It’s listed on UNESCO’s list of ‘Rare and Exceptional Crafts’. It is also hugely important that the skill is preserved as it is integral to the fashion industry and France’s international millinery influence. A hat blocker carves blocks of lime wood to create formers for any type of hat, from straw, beret, bowler or even cowboy. It’s a much more complex process that you might first think. It requires many skills including a knowledge of sculpture, cabinet-making, filming, drawing, shaping, design and a great understanding of the milliner’s materials. This year has seen real change for Hats Blocks Laforest, with a move from Chazelles sur Lyon (the city of felt hats) to this region and its hat production centre, Caussade. The business is now installed in the town’s old quarter, close to the fountain of Thouron and the church, occupying a 13th century building which is brimming with history.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


44 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

There are three elements to Didier’s business. Firstly, the workshop which is fully operational, machines installed, wood ready for use, with gouges, saws and many other, often peculiarly named, tools. A great way to know the workshop definitely in use – there’s a lovely aroma of lime-wood shavings. Then, secondly, there’s a hat shop with a design inspired by the interiors of hat manufacturers’ premises. The shop will be stocked with carefully chosen hats created by Didier’s milliner friends and regional producers. Thirdly, in order to be able to celebrate the history of his craft and the beauty and history of hats Didier’s has created a show room. A place to present his lovely array of wooden hat blocks but also a place to house historical displays and exhibitions. This year it’s the 25th ‘Estivales du Chapeau’ in the town of Caussade (see p.22). Each year between 50 and 70 milliners from all over the world come together in Caussade for a week. There are parades, demonstrations, competitions, visits to hat The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 45

manufactures, musical events and a prestigious evening of parades, competition and awards. This summer, to coincide with the ‘Estivales de Chapeau’, Hats Blocks Laforest will be holding an exhibition of rare and special hats. An exhibition made possible because of the collaboration and close working relationship between Hat Blockers and milliners enabling a great selection of exhibits to be brought together. If you are at the Estivales this summer do try to find Didier and his exhibition. A chance to find out more about being a hat blocker and to share his great passion for all things ‘hat’. Workshop visits are also planned throughout the summer. Every Monday from June to October at 2pm. Price 4 e, duration 1 hour. Booking required at the tourist office of Caussade 05 63 26 04 04 Hats Blocks Laforest 37 rue de la République 82300 Caussade Tel: 06 59 25 23 53. didier.laforest.sculpteur@gmail.com

405 côte de la Serre, Lieu Dit La Croix du Rouch, 82400 Saint-Vincent-Lespinasse Please follow the donkeys on

emane82

Small herd of much-loved donkeys kept for milking The milk is used to create skin/bath products and lovely scented soaps You can shop on-line via the website or visit the little shop, next to the donkeys Visits to see the donkeys (including the new babies) by appointment all summer 06.50.93.74.16. contact@emane.fr www.emane.fr Donkey milk is so kind to your skin

www.libertedesanes.com

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


G M Construction A skilled and loyal workforce of British & French tradesmen

All aspects of building projects both new and renovation, including project management, swimming pools & ground-works If you are looking for a British/French speaking builder operating in 46, 47, 82 & 24 Contact Greg:

06 37 67 49 89 / 06 76 92 28 68 ggmconstructionfr@hotmail.com www.englishbuilderinfrance.com Siret No:- 50741519800013


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 47

CHATEAU DE L’HOSTE

HOSTELLERIE DE CHARME - RESTAURANT - BAR A VIN

For a romantic lunch or dinner on the terrasse or a glass of wine at the « Wine Bar » Wine Bar

The RESTAURANT Menu Terroir and à la Carte from 35€ to 50€ Open daily for lunch and dinner

A choice of wine by glass (from 3 to 5€)

New Le Bistrot de Stéphanie

open from Monday to Saturday 18h30 to 21h A formula “Table d’Hôte”at the Wine Bar

(except Monday and Tuesday-Saturday lunch)

Happy Hour

Every day’s suggestion of a two courses

every Thursday from 18 to 19h

menu at 18€ (cheese or dessert at 6 €) open from Monday to Saturday 18h30 to 21h

Choice of tapas on Thursday

Book your table : 05 63 95 25 61 – mail@chateaudelhoste.com

Situated nearby Roquecor – Saint Beauzeil (D656 road Agen-Cahors) - www.chateaudelhoste.com

GRENIER AUX ARTISTES Art Gallery in Roquecor open from Tuesday to Sunday morning www.grenier-aux-artistes.com Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


48 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

“Can I rely on my banks these days? What should I do with my savings and investments?”

Talk to the people who know. With some banks being fined or taken over, and others such as Nationwide International closing their offshore operations, you may wish to find a new home for your savings. Interest rates are likely to remain low for some time, reducing the spending power of your money over time.

PWK127-fr

Blevins Franks has been providing trusted financial advice to British expatriates for over 40 years. Our recommendations are personalised for each client, based on your situation, objectives and risk profile.

contact us now on

05 56 34 75 51 bordeaux@blevinsfranks.com

Blevins Franks Group is represented in France by the following companies: Blevins Franks Financial Management Limited (BFFM) and Blevins Franks France SASU (BFF). BFFM is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority in the UK, reference number 179731. Where advice is provided overseas, via the Insurance Mediation Directive from Malta, the regulatory system differs in some respects from that of the UK. Blevins Franks France SASU (BFF), is registered with ORIAS, register number 07 027 475, and authorised as “Conseil en Investissement Financiers” and “Courtiers d’Assurance” Category B (register can be consulted on www.orias.fr). BFF’s registered office: Parc Innolin, 3 Rue du Golf, CS 60073, 33701 Mérignac – RCS BX 498 800 465.

CROSS-BORDER TAX PLANNING  ESTATE PLANNING  INVESTMENTS  PENSIONS

www.blevinsfranks.com

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 49

IS YOUR FINANCIAL PLAN STILL IDEAL FOR YOU IN TODAY’S WORLD? For most people, the key aim of financial planning is to protect their wealth. Whether you are looking at your savings and investments, tax planning, pensions or estate planning, there are two key elements to consider – are they up-to-date and are they specifically designed around your family’s circumstances and objectives?

Protecting your wealth

We need to protect the value of our capital and income right through our retirement years. Knowing that both you and your spouse will be financially secure, no matter how long you live or what health issues life may throw your way, provides welcome peace of mind. You may also want to pass wealth on to the next generations, to help your children and grandchildren as they make their way through life. When you consider your personal family situation, source of wealth, income needs, short and long-term aims, time horizon, risk appetite etc, your situation is quite unique. You therefore need highly personalised financial planning. The first move to protecting your wealth is to identify the potential threats. You can then weigh up which affect you most and establish what steps you can take to protect against them. Threats include taxation; automatic exchange of financial information and the loss of financial privacy; frequent changes to legislation (eg taxation and pensions); low interest rates, inflation, asset volatility and institutional failure.

Long-term personal advice

You then need to seek advice from an experienced, expert wealth manager/financial adviser, one who is best placed to deal with all your current and future needs. You want an advisory firm which will be around for the long-term to provide guidance and recommendations as needed, both to yourself now and to your spouse and family after you are gone. Since wealth management is such a personal issue, your adviser should take all the time needed, and use the necessary tools, to help to get to know you, your needs and objectives, very well. They should understand how you want your family to inherit your assets and be looked after in future. Building up a close, long-term relationship with one advisory firm produces positive results as well as peace of mind.

Understanding local taxation

The ideal situation would be for your adviser to live locally in France. They will understand what it is like to live here and cope with the local bureaucracy, and have a deep understanding of the financial planning needs of expatriates here and all the nuances of the

French tax regime. They need to be able to react quickly and help you make adjustments if your personal circumstances suddenly change, or if there are reforms to local tax legislation. Brexit makes it even more important to use a locally based adviser. If you live here, all elements of your financial planning, from investments to estate planning, need to be set up for France, and not for the UK. And only someone with local experience can provide that. If you move between countries, your adviser should have knowledge of both and the interaction between the regimes.

Investment planning

Investment is probably the area where people are most concerned about losing money. All investments, including bank accounts, carry risk. However portfolios can carry a wide spectrum of risk, depending on the assets held within it, the proportions, and the level of diversification. So your portfolio must be specifically based on your personal situation and risk appetite. It is essential that you obtain a clear and objective view of your risk tolerance. Your adviser can do this, for example, through psychometric tests, combined with his knowledge of your personal situation and aims for you and your family.

Regulation

Your advisers should have suitable, higher-level professional qualifications, and follow continuous professional development practices to ensure their advice is always up to date. Regulation is very important, and the advisory firm should be authorised by a reputable regulatory body. Check that the firm is authorised to give advice here in France, either through one of the French regulatory bodies or the EU ‘passport’ system. Note that for certain transactions you may need to use a UK regulated adviser. For example, under the UK pension rules, if you want to transfer more than £30,000 out of a defined benefit scheme, you must first take advice from a UK FCA regulated firm. 0The sooner you review your financial planning, and set it up with a strategic, long-term vision to protect your wealth, the sooner you can put it behind you and get on enjoying your life here in France.

Peter Wakelin, Regional Manager of Blevins Franks France part of the Blevins Franks Group the leading international tax and wealth management advisers to UK nationals living in Europe, with decades of experience advising British expatriates moving to and living in France. Telephone 05 56 34 75 51 ~ bordeaux@blevinsfranks.fr ~ www.blevinsfranks.com Tax rates, scope and reliefs may change. Any statements concerning taxation are based upon our understanding of current taxation laws and practices which are subject to change. Tax information has been summarised; an individual is advised to seek personalised advice. Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


50 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Help us with our huge challenge!

H

ands up how many of us expats miss sitting in traffic for hours? How many would swop travelling the empty lanes in the beautiful countryside we enjoy in this part of France, with being parked for hours on the M25! The joy of this freedom and space is one of the many reasons many of us moved to France, but it also proves to be a challenge in a different way, meaning the distances we now routinely travel can be huge. This is proving to be something of an obstacle for the team at CSF Dordogne Est & Lot in providing full coverage of our association’s huge area, and we are working hard at the moment to address this shortfall, by recruiting new members in all far flung corners, beginning with the focus this June with the area around Figeac. CSF National Founder Linda Shepherd, who sadly died of cancer in March, was instrumental in forging close connections with La Ligue Contre Le Cancer across France, and building on this foundation the

ex-President of our association Julia Hall, is at the forefront of a new initiative, working with Marie-Claire Rembault, chief volunteer at La Ligue, Figeac. To launch this, they jointly organised an Open Day on June 7th at the Club-House, Stade de Calvaire, Figeac with the help of members of our CSF association and volunteers from La Ligue, welcoming anyone interested in becoming involved or finding out more about our work.

As always, we rely on your help and support and would encourage anyone in the Figeac area, who would like to help us with our vital work supporting anyone whose lives are touched by cancer, to contact us on: delot-president@cancersupportfrance.org / www. cancersuportfrance.org / HELPLINE 06 35 90 03 41

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 51

Mick Bates – Monflanquin (47150) General Electrician

Certified & Registered Business in France for all Electrical Works | New & Renovation Works Plumbing | All works guaranteed | Free quotation

Tel. 05 82 95 05 73 Port. 06 27 71 94 51 mick.bates@lgtel.fr Refer to this advert to receive a 10%discount

LANDSCAPE DESIGN Meet with the client Visit the site Prepare the plan for the garden

SERVICES WE OFFER

We can simply do ‘the planning’ for you or go on to also create your garden

www.concepteur-paysagiste.fr We work throughout departments 46, 47 and 82.

Pruning - Felling - Grinding - Clearance Terracing, Retaining-walls and Driveways Paths – Drystone-walls - Borders Ground Preparation (biodiversity) - Planting Soil - Mulching and Organic Fertilizing Property Maintenance

T. 06 81 99 58 38

roland.burgniard@laposte.net

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


Cherry & Almond Cake


Cherry & Almond Cake

THE QUERCY LOCAL • 53

What is not to love about this wonderfully summery cake. Ideal for a special day, a self-indulgent Sunday or maybe made for someone special. We hope you enjoy! Ingredients

Method

Serves 12

To make the cake:

For the cake: • 200g butter at room temperature • 200g caster sugar • 4 eggs • 200g self raising flour • 100g ground almonds • 1tsp vanilla extract • 200g fresh pitted cherries • 50g flaked almonds

Pre-heat oven to 160°C. In a bowl, cream the butter and sugar until pale and fluffy.

For the butter icing: • 125g butter • 125g icing sugar • 50ml milk • Vanilla extract

Add in the icing sugar and continue to beat until smooth and fluffy. Add the milk and

2 x 23cm cake tins buttered and lined with greaseproof paper

the rest of the buttercream into the centre. Decorate with fresh cherries, lightly dipped

Add in the eggs one at a time, mixing as you go. Fold in the flour, ground almonds, vanilla extract and finally the cherries until everything is well combined. Divide the mixture between the two tins and sprinkle one with the flaked almonds. Place in the oven to bake. After 30 minutes check the sponges by pressing lightly on top, if it springs back, it’s ready. Leave to cool on a wire rack.

To make the buttercream icing: Place the butter in a bowl or free standing mixer and beat until soft and pale in colour. vanilla extract and beat again.

To assemble the cake: Place the bottom layer (the one without the almonds) on a cake stand and spread (or pipe, as in the photo) on half the buttercream icing. Place on the top layer and pipe in egg white then caster sugar for a frosted look.

Le Caillau: Nestled in the heart of the Cahors vineyards you’ll find Le Caillau is a family run Restaurant, Café and Pottery Painting Atelier. In 2011, Caroline and Chas Sharp opened the doors of Le Caillau, a renovated 300 year old winery. Our aim is simple – to produce great quality, simple and tasty food. In our restaurant kitchen our small team creates dishes based on vegetables from our own kitchen garden and local seasonal produce, (with some more exotic ingredients thrown in for variety and a different flavour from traditional Quercy cuisine). Our Café and Pottery Painting Atelier is perfect for an afternoon getaway, whether you’re after a coffee and slice of homemade cake (lemon drizzle and coffee and walnut are some of our customers’ favourites), or you’re feeling artistic and decide to get creative by painting some pottery. Opening Hours July & August*: Monday & Tuesday: 10am – 5pm, Wednesday to Saturday: 10am – 11pm, Sunday: 12pm – 4pm Lunch is served between 12pm – 2.30pm and dinner from 7pm *Please check our website for our opening hours outside of July & August

Le Caillau, 46700 Vire sur Lot. Telephone: 05 65 23 78 04 www.lecaillau.com facebook.com/lecaillau twitter.com/lecaillau Instagram.com/lecaillau

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


54 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Restaurant Le Moulin de Dausse

Restaurant Gastronomique

Le Bourg, Dausse

Ephrussi de Rothschild villa et jardins

Terrasse Couverte

Tel: 0553412600

Jardin Exotique d’Eze

Thirty members have just returned from an amazing 5-day tour of beautiful gardens in Haute Provence and Côte d’Azure. Our travels took us from a herb garden to a village of roses; from a harmonious Zen garden to a natural park of ‘biodiversité conserving, amongst other plants, more than 400 fruit trees; from a botanical garden of exotic cactus and succulents to the magnificent villa and gardens of Ephrussi de Rothschild; and from the beautiful private garden of an artist to the Museum de la Perfumerie in Grasse. Shown are just 2 of the several hundred photos taken. Now is the time to start planning your entries for the competitions to be held at our Garden Show on Sunday, 17th September. The classes will be: 1. Five of the same – root vegetables 2. Five of the same – other vegetables 3. Five of the same – tomatoes, chilies, peppers

www.moulindedausse.com

4. Five of the same – fruit (These 4 classes should contain the same variety of veg/ fruit which should be of similar size and appearance) 5. A pumpkin or squash – judged on condition 6. A display of cut flowers 7. A pot plant 8. A basket of mixed garden produce 9. Preserves – jam or chutney 10. A funny-shaped vegetable or fruit 11. Children’s Competitions – a drawing or painting of an insect/bug, and a home-made model of an insect/bug. 12. The plum/prune challenge – a home-made cake or pastry made with plums or prunes which will be tasted and judged by the public. For more information, please contact Ingrid Batty on 05 63 31 91 52 or events@cjl82.fr Here is the current remainder of our 2017 annual programme: July 11 Tea Party in Fiona’s Garden – Sauveterre Aug 8 Summer Hog Roast Sept 12 “Carnivorous Plants” Talk by M. Damien Hubaut Sept 17 Portes Ouvertes / Garden Show, Salle des Fêtes, Lauzerte Oct 10 “A Presentation on Permaculture” Nov 14 “Indoor Plants/Patio Plants” Talk by Marie from Jardins de Moissac Nov tbc CJL Stand at “La Journee de l’Arbre” Dec 12 A Really Delicious Club Christmas Lunch * Date to be confirmed

We would be delighted to welcome you, with no obligation, at one of our meetings detailed in the above programme. From September, we’ll be meeting every 2nd Tuesday of the month at the Salle des Fetes in Lauzerte, from 2pm – 4.30pm. Our meetings cater for both French and English speakers and the annual fee is only 10 euros. Do contact our Secretary, Pam Westcott, who will be delighted to hear from you: 05 63 94 19 25 or secretary@cjl82.fr.

The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 55

Siret: 514 571 157 000 15

APM

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


56 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

LAS RAZES Your perfect large gîte

CHRIS CONNELLY DRONE & GROUND PHOTOGRAPHY Gîtes, Real Estate, Receptions & more

www.chrisconnelly.fr 06 95 79 28 77

Heated Salt Water Pool, 8 en-suite bedrooms. Snooker, table-tennis, wifi, large garden and terraces. Ideal for family get togethers and special events. Also ideal location for people running courses (art, yoga, walking, biking etc.) Convenient for – Lauzerte, Montaigu de Quercy and Montcuq www.lasrazes.net Instagram lasrazes Twitter lasrazes www.facebook.com/lasrazes.france Las Razes, Touffailles (82190) Tarn et Garonne

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 57

Speed Classic, your privileged classic car and Porsche specialist, offering a top of the range service & expert advice. • renovation & repairs on all models • Vehicle Sales & Purchase

• Vehicle consignment service • Spare parts

Z.I. Jean Malèze ❙ 61, rue Ferdinand Buisson ❙ 47240 CaStelCulIer Tél. +33 (0)5 53 99 74 26 ❙ speedclassic.communication@gmail.com www.speedclassic.fr

Quercy Builders (82150)

Stone work and all aspects of renovation Subcontractors to the trade and a professional service to the public References available No obligation quotations

info@quercybuilders.com www.quercybuilders.com 06 52 49 03 57 Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


58 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Restaurant ‘La Sirene’ Place de l’Hotel de Ville Montaigu de Quercy (82150) Varied cuisine & a warm welcome guaranteed Opening hours: July & August - open Wed - Sun, 10.30am -12.00 for coffee & cakes then from 12.00 - 2.00pm for lunch. Weekly events throughout the summer, including music soirees & quiz nights. Available for group bookings by prior arrangement

Catering service, either here or at your venue.

Reserve by phone on 05 63 94 44 82 email: t-mermaid@hotmail.com

PAYSAGES-BEAUVILLOIS

Bob, van Leeuwe Siret. 823 903 117 00013

Gardening, landscaping, tree felling & logging Entretien spaces verts et abattage bucheronnage

Paysages-beauvillois@outlook.fr Tel: 06 89 27 30 96 ‘Les-2-Lacs’, Beauville, 47470

THE AMAZING SENSE OF SMELL The Cat’s sense of smell, not vision, is its primary resource for identifying the individuals and objects in its environment. The cat’s visual acuity is 10 times less than that of humans. However, they have 200 million odour-sensitive cells in their noses compared to only 5 million for humans. Cats live in a sensory world completely apart from ours. The sense of smell plays a very insignificant role in human relationships and in our response to our environment, while for cats, it is all-important and may result in some puzzling and disturbing behaviours. Consider the following: • The owner puts a scented litter in the litter box-the cat refuses to use it because perfume is actually a repellent for cats. • The owner comes home after visiting a friend and petting her friendly, lap-sitting cat-she is greeted with hisses and growls from her cat. • A new piece of furniture is moved into the house. The unfamiliar scent is upsetting to the cat and impels it to mark it with its own signature scent. (This can be accomplished by rubbing on it, scratching it, or by spraying urine on it.) Our cats are only doing what comes naturally to them. Until next time... Lynn Stone, Comportementaliste feline, Présidente de l’Association Chats du Quercy

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Orrom Informatique All your Computer, Website & Graphic Design needs English Spoken - Free Quotations Mark Orrom

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Administration & Business Management Could your business run more efficiently with the help of an independent assistant handling your paperwork and your French and English customers? No contract – just working when you need help. Leaving you free to concentrate on your business. Please call me or take a look at my website.

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vgr.secretariat@gmail.com vgr-secretariat.com Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


60 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

La Troupe D’Acteurs Du Quercy The Reunion

O

ver 150 people attended La Troupe d’acteurs du Quercy’s latest production “The Reunion” – a northern based play outlining the story of 4 school friends reuniting after 35 years. The show received positive feedback – the quality of the acting by the 8 cast members was particularly noted. However, a show is not just about the people treading the boards – there are so many behind the scenes roles that often go un-noticed. If you think amateur dramatics is not for you as the thought of being “on show” brings you out in a cold sweat, please think again. The Troupe requires all sorts of talents for both ‘drama queens’ and the ‘shy and retiring’. Lighting: the lighting team help create the ambience of the set and show off the action using a range of lighting effects. This year the Troupe has invested in some state of the art control equipment and new spotlights. Sound: music and sound effects can bring a show to life using both computer generated and controlled sounds to the old fashioned sound boards, and the occasional set of coconut shells. Props: Each show involves a vast array of stage properties, from simple glasses and drinks (on stage beer is really cold tea) to a dead body. Props are sourced in a variety of ways – made, begged, borrowed but never stolen. In the Reunion, most of the buffet food was crafted from salt dough. Set design: many productions involve quite complex sets – from an enchanted forest, to inside a whale’s stomach, from a function room in an old style boozer to a circus scene.... Anyone with an interest in interior design would love to be involved Set building: this jobs calls out to all enthusiastic or even reluctant ‘DIY’ers.... Sets have to be built and painted – we reuse the same “flats” but bring them to life with new painting, wallpaper or 3D effects Wardrobe: finding the right costumes for each production. Sometimes the cast wear their own clothing

but not everyone has a dragon outfit or pantomime cow costume loitering in the back of their cupboards. So we need to research costumes and source or make them – so anyone with needle skills would be a welcome addition to the Troupe. Make up: from simple stage make up to full blown face painting (remember the fantastic cat in Puss in Boots) make up can transform the cast into evil fairies, wicked witches, wooden puppets and beautiful princesses. Prompt: this is the role which is essential, but preferred to be under employed! Ensuring the cast stay on track with their lines when the unexpected happens or that senior moment kicks in.... Stage management: ensuring that the set changes run smoothly, that the curtains open and close, that the actors and the props are in place at the right time – anyone with an operations background would relish this role. Then we have the people involved with promoting the shows – we have a website, we need to produce posters, fliers, programmes, tickets, produce advertising and editorial materials... anyone with skills in graphic design, copywriting or marketing would be welcomed with open arms. Finally, we have the people who deal with all the front of house issues – we run a box office, man the ticket desk, operate a bar and raffle, serve meals, help deal with seating, housekeeping and even ensuring toilet rolls, soap and towels are provided. So if you are looking to find a new hobby, to develop new skills or acquire a wider social circle whilst having fun then please do contact us – we would be delighted to hear from you. Contact: John Blaus on 05 63 05 18 99 or jblaus@outlook.com www.la-troupe.org

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 61

LA RAPIETTE Artisanal Brewery in Montcuq EIRL

Stéphane VETTORETTI

Le Cayrel, 46800 Montcuq 06 71 91 85 99 bieredemontcuq@orange.fr

Brasserie Artisanale de Montcuq - La Rapiette

Quercy Counselling English-speaking counselling and psychological services on all manner of issues. Based in Belveze, we offer services face-to-face, via telephone and Skype. For more information please see the website: www.quercycounselling.com Or contact Elizabeth Cross on +33(0)788279014 or quercycounselling@gmail.com

QUERCY OAK Construction & Renovations

A friendly, reliable service with many years experience in all aspects of the building industry. All projects undertaken, completed to the highest standard. General building, All aspects of carpentry, New build, Complete renovations & conversions, Timber frame houses, Refurbishments, Green oak framing, Roofing & insulation, Hardwood flooring & tiling, Bespoke joinery including staircases. And much more...

Please call us today for an estimate or quotation 07 80 58 39 60 mob 06 75 51 89 13 mob laquercyoak@gmail.com http://greyrobert4.wixsite.com/quercy-oak instagram: quercyoak Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


62 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Issue 29

March - April 2017 Issue 28

uercy cal Local uercy Lo May-June 2017

The

The

The Region’s FREE magazine in English

The Region’s

ANIMAL RESCUE 46 ASSOCIATION No. W461002977

VOLUNTEERS WORKING ON BEHALF OF ASSOCIATIONS AND REFUGEES IN THE LOT

WITH YOUR VALUED DONATIONS OF CLOTHING AND OBJECTS FOR OUR

VIDE GRENIERS OF MONEY AND OF FOODS

YOU CAN HELP US TO PROTECT, DEFEND AND HELP OUR FRIENDS THE DOGS, CATS, HORSES AND BIRDS MALTREATED OR IN NEED

!URGENT VOLUNTEERS! WE ARE ASKING IF YOU CAN GENEROUSLY OFFER US SOME TIME TO ASSIST AND ENJOY OUR CONVIVAL VIDE GRENIERS AND COLLECTIONS?

PLEASE KINDLY CONTACT

animalrescue46@gmail.com 0645543628 – 0565214709 THANK YOU FOR CARING

Inside – Lily of the Valley, Bovine Beauties & Pickled Garlic & Alpine Gardens Art, Artisans III Surviving a Stroke for Richard and win Tickets

FREE magazine

uercy Local November

The

FREE magazine

2017 Issue

in English

Inside – Mistletoe & Wine Local Chefs & Seasonal Foods Anxiety, Persevera nce & Secularism Cabaret, Gifts & Trick Cyclists

Welcome to Spring Vivara.fr

Pour la Protection

de la Nature

www.quercylocal.c

www.quercylocal.com www.quercylocal.c

2016 - February

The Region’s

in English

Inside – Old Dogs, Donkeys & Gastropods Easter Puddings, Non-Conformity & Classic Cars

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GET THIS MAGAZINE DELIVERED TO YOUR DOOR!

Your copy of The Quercy Local can be delivered to your home in France or elsewhere in Europe. If you would like to get the next 5 copies of the magazine delivered directly to your home in France or another address in Europe then this is very simple to arrange. Simply visit our website and follow the link to ‘Subscribe’ you can made the subscription immediately by using either a bank card or paypal. If you prefer to pay by cheque then simply forward a cheque (payable to A Atkinson) to Las Razes, Touffailles, 82190, France – do include the address that you want the magazines sending to. We will always start the subscription with the next edition to be published unless you email to ask us to start with the current one. The costs for getting 5 copies sent to you are currently – 20 euro for an address in France or 12 euro for elsewhere in Europe.

thequercylocal@gmail.com www.quercylocal.com

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Pool design & construction Traditional swimming-pools Liner – reinforced PVC - Automatic water treatment - Automatic cover Automatic cleaning - Heat pump – Equipment - Chemicals

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NEED HELP WITH YOUR INSURANCE?

ASK MAARTJE!

Maartje Schlepers has lived in the Lot since April 2014 and is happy to answer your insurance related questions. Q. We are about to get renovation work done to our rather old watermill, eventually this will be our permanent home. I have read that we need to make sure that the work is carried out with traders with a décennale insurance policy. Could you answer 3 questions for me? Q1. Which trades are required to offer this insurance cover? A1. The ‘décennale’ is an insurance that offers a ten year guarantee for the work that is carried out by the artisan. It is a legal obligation for every tradesman to take out an insurance as soon as they register and start their business. The trades can be divided in two sections: gros oeuvre and second oeuvre, according to the importance and risk involved in the trade. Masonry, roofing and (outdoor) carpentry for example come in the category of gros oeuvre. Plumbing, tiling, electricity, plastering and decorating are considered second oeuvre. The décennale insurance includes a legal liability element. If the artisan working at your property accidentally causes damage the legal liability part could be involved. For example, if the artisan who is retiling your roof, drops some tiles right on top of your Land Rover, the liability part of the insurance should cover the damage. The décennale part of the insurance is not activated until the work is finished, which is usually considered to be the case as soon as the artisan hands in his final invoice for the work carried out. From this moment onwards the ten years start to count. The décennale only applies when normal use of the property is threatened or no longer possible due to faulty workmanship. For example: if a decorator covers your walls in bright orange when you agreed on light blue, the décennale will not be applicable because your house can still be lived in. Q2. Does this insurance last for the full 10 years even if the trader retires or stops the business? A2. Yes the insurance remains valid for the full ten years even if the tradesman retires, stops his business, goes bankrupt or is forced to end the business for other reasons. The fact that the insurance remains

valid is one of the reasons why this insurance is considered to be quite expensive, especially to cover the gros oeuvre trades. Q3. What happens if there is a problem with the work? Do the insurance company send somebody to correct the work? Who decides whether the problem is due to defective workmanship or some other cause? A3. In the event of a problem the client makes a claim with his own household or legal insurers. If it is expected that the problem originated from faulty workmanship the artisan’s insurers will be contacted and an expert will be invited to come and examine the damage. Both the expert representing the client and the expert representing the artisan will try to find its cause. In severe cases it’s possible that several meetings will take place and both the client and the artisan are encouraged and expected to be present. As soon as the cause of the problem is determined and if indeed defective workmanship is found, the insurance company representing the artisan will pay for the damage to be repaired. Some advice: When you employ a tradesman, we recommend to request an attestation of décennale insurance, take a copy and verify that the activities mentioned on the attestation correspond with the work to be carried out. This is wise as then you are certain that the person you employ is insured and secondly in the event of a problem you’ve the artisan’s insurance details at hand. Maartje Schlepers, Assurances Benoit, La Plégade, 46150 Pontcirq, Tel Office 0972468223 (Mon to Thurs) Email: expat@agence.generali.f, Orias 07005354 - 15005887

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


66 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 67

i g ht.CD g g e i r r s O M W

Sandy Wright ‘Boutadieu’ 47370 Tournon d’Agenais

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


68 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

The Fruits of Quercy’s Labour

Vineyards and wine production covers great swathes of the region – but fruit growing is an enterprise of enormous proportions and huge importance to the area. Valérie Rousseau

Much of the region has an economy based on arboriculture and it is also leading the way with the development of ‘green’ arboriculture. Historically the (then) Midi Pyrénees had more than 16 000 ha of land devoted to fruit growing, especially in the Tarn et Garonne which is recognised as the 1st department in France for apple and plum production and the 2nd department in France for table- grapes and hazelnuts. It also produces high quality melons, kiwis, cherries, apricots, figs, pears, peaches, nectarines, strawberries and so on. It is, in fact, the largest orchard in France! A large variety of apples are grown on more than 5000 ha of the Tarn et Garonne and a further 6000 ha elsewhere in the (former) Midi Pyrénées, more than 270 000 tons of apples are produced; a great reason than to eat an apple or make a pie! There are also great locally-grown apple juices; a world away from the mass produced versions, look out for these on the local markets. There are also many varieties of plums (in many different colours) and you can find these from the beginning of summer to the beginning of October,

and of course a vast quantity of these are dried to produce the famous Pruneau d’Agen. Many people will know of the Chasselas de Moissac AOP, an irresistible small grape that seems to have absorbed the sun itself. This table grape is produced mainly in the Tarn et Garonne, and Moissac’ is now acknowledged as a Site Remarquable du Gout. Look out for the wonderful ‘non-alcoholic’ grape juice made from the Chasselas grape – it’s sold all over the region. As well as the aperitifs such as Quercy des Iles or L’émoustilleur. By combining their long heritage, the most superb territory and generations of knowledge Quercy’s producers have created a fruit based economy that is recognised well-beyond the region. As you drive past the literally endless orchards, do bear a thought for the hard work involved, the picking, the nurturing and the desperate need for the ‘right weather’ at the ‘right time’. Similarly when you see the fruit stacked high on the market stalls, you know that there are not lots of air-miles involved. This is Quercy grown and it’s as good as it gets.

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 69

Property Management, Caretaking & Holiday Lettings around Montcuq

Carlow Brewing Company – craft and traditional Irish beers, stouts, ales, wheat beers and lagers. Classic craft brewing methods, using only malts, hops, yeast and water, all bearing the founders family name of O’Hara’s. Award winning beers imported directly from the family brewery in Ireland. Direct sales from the depot in Pontcirq (46150), local deliveries possible for large orders. Kegs for parties.

Marianne Charpentier www.quercygite.com

Information on the company and beers on www.carlowbrewing.com

Part French, 16 years experience with owners, artisans & tenants. bosredon46@orange.fr

06 71 71 77 22

Contact Tanya on tanya.treacy@orange.fr /0565245828 for sales

La Cuisine de Karla For all your catering needs up to 50 pers.

Place de le Croix – 82150 Roquecor General supplies, Bread, Newsagents, Postal Point We also stock a supply of British products and a great selection of wines from local producers

Local and convenient – a true village shop Karla Wagenar Lieu-dit Monbran 82150 Montaigu de Quercy 0563045517 or 0628147136 Albertenkarla@gmail.com

TERRE CUITE

05 63 95 25 78 / 06 82 84 56 30 r.long@orange.fr (SARL Lacroixroc) Delphine and Jean Longueteau

At Gites.co.uk we put owners like you in direct contact with renters - with no additional fees. It’s your customer, not ours! • List up to five properties FREE for 180 days • £99/year or less* after 180 days • No commitment after free period • Up to 25 images per property, plus video • No booking fees or additional costs • Deal directly with your customer • Mobile friendly website (up to 60% of our visitors use a mobile or tablet device) • Email and SMS alerts for enquiries Join us FREE for 180 days at gites.co.uk/join180 with no risk! Gites.co.uk lists owner operated holiday homes across France and exists to deliver high quality converting enquiries direct to owners. We don’t insist on booking via our site, and we don’t interfere in your communication with your guest: It’s your customer, not ours. *£99/year for one property. Discounts apply for multiple listings (e.g. £59.80/ year per listing for 5 properties)

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271 Gites ad 132mm x 94mm landscape.indd 1 May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local •28/06/2016 16:15 Published March, July - August 2017


70 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 71

E - IC RD V A SER AW NG I N IN W DROP IN AND SEE US IN TOURNON D’AGENAIS OR MONTAIGU DE QUERCY

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


72 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Building a better brain “We are what we repeatedly do” Did you know the brain doesn’t know the difference between past, present and future? So you can actually create an imaginary future memory and the brain will see it as just a memory. “Why would you do this or need to do this? The neural pathways in the brain are wired to follow exactly what’s already set up. A good way of explaining it is like going for a walk in the forest. As a rule you’re not going to force your way through bramble, struggling to find a way to the other side, when there’s a clear pathway right next to you. This is exactly how our brain works – it follows pre-setup neural pathway patterns with every thought, emotion and action we take.” Irena-Marie Makowska is an Advanced Practitioner Therapist and BWRT® Master Coach and works with companies such as Airbus Group and private individuals. “I find more and more people are interested in the neuroscience behind these therapies. It opens up a whole new book of possibilites – we can achieve so much more than we often allow ourselves”, comments Irena-Marie, “the Brain’s neuroplasticity offers real hope to everyone from stroke victims to dyslexics, to accelerated learning and belief patterns.” So what exactly is Neuroplasticity? It’s the brain’s ability to reorganise itself by forming new neural connections, and this happens throughout life. The fact is that we can change, we can rewire – with a little help. Our brain also cannot differentiate between what’s true or false. We take information in and depending on who gives us this information (it becomes more

Aristotle

valuable, or less so) we process it, adding value judgment based on emotions stored in the amygdala, and if it’s a similar match to what’s already there, it reinforces a belief pattern. So if you have been told numerous times as a child you’re fat, stupid, skinny, clever – what you hear often enough becomes fact and true to you. Irena-Marie states: “I have a number of clients who say ‘I was a fat child, all my family have weight issues’. I question that, who told them that? It’s simply information being passed down that’s been created into a reality.” One of the main reasons people find it difficult to lose weight or maintain weight loss is their belief pattern. They are not greedy or have a low metabolic rate; it’s often a substitute for low self esteem, filling an emotional hole, a reward system. The reasons are numerous. Their neural pathways are simply taking the easiest route as the pattern match has remained unchanged. If we create a new set of belief patterns we can alter at core level. On the business front, companies such as BT are using it now in their leadership programmes, as Hugh Hood, Group HR Director explains: “Neuroscience is powerful in considering how we structure learning…” This offers up new ways of accelerated learning, resilience, performance and innovative thinking. Schools can transform children’s self confidence and self belief; companies can inspire their mangers to become more creative and considerate leaders… The possibilities are endless. To find out more please visit http://www.irena-mariemakowska.com/ and http://www.focus-hypnotherapy.com/ or email irena-marie@focus-wellbeing.com Irena-Marie works with children aged seven upwards, adolescents and adults. A recommended book is ‘The Brain That Changes Itself’, by Norman Doidge, M.D.

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74 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Cette belle région Bonjour à vous … qui visitez notre belle région du Quercy pour la première fois ! Tant de choses à découvrir au fil de vos ballades et excursions dans les jolis villages et bastides du Tarn et Garonne, Lot, Lot et Garonne … et même Dordogne et Gers ! Chaque lieu a une histoire et les habitants de ce charmant coin de France sont tous prêts à vous faire partager leurs connaissances et leurs savoir-faire …. A vous qui revenez dans le Quercy pour la ...ème fois (!), vous savez déjà combien l’endroit est accueillant, alors n’en rajoutons pas : que ce soit au hasard d’une ruelle, d’une vallée ou d’un château, nous saurons encore vous surprendre par nos activités et lieux de ressourcement …. Et l’une de vos ballades préférées, n’est-elle pas de flâner sur l’un des nombreux marchés locaux du Quercy ?...

Une belle ville avec son marché Le marché de Roquecor : charme, atmosphère, convivialité Le marché du petit village de Roquecor (82150) existe depuis très très longtemps… et cela, été comme hiver. Une gageure pour un si petit village. Mais c’est ce qui fait la typicitée de Roquecor : une ambiance -très « internationale » , c’est le point de rencontre obligé… que ce soit pour un café, pour un déjeuner ou faire ses achats sur ce fameux « Marché de Roquecor ». Malgré tout, l’hiver a été long et les commerçants présents sur le marché se sont fait un peu plus rare. A tel point que l’Association des commerçants a réuni toutes les bonnes volontés du village pour réfléchir à une nouvelle dynamique à mettre en place. C’est ainsi qu’il a été décidé de créer diverses animations pendant le marché … selon les semaines vous aurez le plaisir de découvrir un atelier d’initiation à la céramique ou à la vannerie, une dégustation de vin ou une animation « plancha », un groupe musical sur la terrasse du bistrot à partir de 12h … car les commerçants souhaitent que l’on vienne sur le marché, pas seulement une quinzaine de minutes pour acheter quelques légumes… mais y rester pour grignoter quelque chose ou boire un verre de vin, au gré des stands… y rencontrer des amis, partager un moment de vie avec les afficionados du marché. Et nous avons pu constater par nous-même cette nouvelle dynamique… nous avons su apprécier cette atmosphère particulière du Marché de Roquecor, fait de convivialité, de chaleur humaine et de bonne humeur. Si le Marché de Roquecor n’est pas le plus grand… il est vraiment le plus sympathique et le plus charmant. Eric TREPP, Roquecor

Roquecor market – a friendly atmosphere The ago-old market in Roquecor (82150) runs all year on a Sunday morning. That’s a real challenge for such a small town. But it’s this smallness that makes it very special, the atmosphere is friendly and surprisingly ‘international’. Here you can meet friends for coffee or lunch or just do some shopping at the popular market. However, winter is long and at the start of this spring there were less traders coming to the market, so the ‘Traders’ Association’ concluded that they needed to take some urgent action. It was decided to try to arrange some different events at the regular markets and so on various Sunday’s you can get involved with pottery, basketweaving and wine tasting; and then there’s the chance to listen to live music on the Café’s terrace. The whole idea is that people won’t just visit the market to quickly buy a few vegetables, but that they’ll take the time to stop and have a glass of wine, something to eat and wander around the stalls. It’s clear that these changes are working, the atmosphere is positive and welcoming. So even if Roquecor Market is not the largest, it’s perhaps one of the friendliest. Les prochaines dates à retenir/Dates to remember Dimanche 2 juillet et dimanches suivants de juillet et août : animation musicale au Café du Centre à partir de midi. Every Sunday morning during July and August: musical entertainment on Café du Centre’s terrace from noon. 8 juillet animation ‘poterie’ par Scarlett Massel (Pottery workshop) 16 juillet Jeux traditionnels en bois (Traditional Wooden Toys) 23 juillet Dégustation de vin (Wine Tasting) 30 juillet Démonstration de vannerie avec Karline Chevrel (Basket Weaving) 15 août Balade en voiture « toutes époques » départ de Roquecor à 10h (Amis des Chats) (Car Rally) 20 août Brocante (Antiques) Et des animations surprises sur la terrasse du Grenier aux Artistes/other activities occasionally on the terrace of Greniers au Artists

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Non-residents are extremely welcome to join us in our restaurant. We look forward to seeing you. In our restaurant you will find only the very best of Quercy’s gastronomy, meals prepared with only fresh local organic ingredients. Whether you dine in the exquisite dining-room or on the beautiful summer terrace you will be in the perfect place for an experience never to be forgotten. Set in beautiful landscaped gardens Le Manoir St Jean offers peace and tranquility as well as a real sense of style with its neoclassical elegance. If you are looking for somewhere for a special treat, a celebration or simply somewhere to try the best of the region’s products then a table at Le Manoir awaits. We recommend calling us to reserve a table. (Eng. Spoken) At Le Manoir St Jean we have a selection of individually designed rooms/suites which will help you make the very best of your visit to the region. Le Manoir St Jean 82400 Saint-Paul d’Espis Tél. : + 33 (0) 5 63 05 02 34 info@manoirsaintjean.com www.manoirsaintjean.com


76 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

BOWS Distillerie Whisky (and more) Production in the Tarn et Garonne So if your favourite spirits are coming from much further away, maybe now is the time to reduce the air-miles in your tumbler and get behind a man with a dream.

B

OWS stands for Brave Occitan Wide Spirit and it’s the perfect name for Benoît Garcia’s brain child – his idea, his work and his passion have brought together this intriguing new Montauban based distillery. This is an industry steeped with ancient knowhow and equipment that looks like the contents of Merlin’s laboratory. All of which has come together with Benoît who has added patience, extreme hard-work, contemporary design, modern thinking and an ability to balance old and new tastes and styles. So how did all this come about? Benoît originates from Hérault but his family had roots in the Tarn et Garonne. As a younger man he travelled the world extensively before spending time in Paris and then heading back south to Toulouse and of-all-things entering a world of air-conditioning and heating. He was a man driven by a belief that somewhere there was a way of starting a business that would combine his experiences with his passions. Before travelling Benoît had the chance to gain experience in vineyards but his real passion was for spirits and craft-brewing. So these formed the beginning of his business idea. An idea that he then proposed to

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 77

several regional towns to see if they were interested in supporting his vision. Montauban welcomed his ideas and agreed to help him install his distillery in an area known as Verhalguet. A later-day alchemist Benoît has been researching and experimenting. He’s absorbed techniques from all over the world (particularly Scotland) he then blended his own research with some real chemical logic and his own obstinate determination. It’s all paying off! All this drive and enthusiasm has borne fruit or at least liquor! Benoît was able to test his equipment last December and then January saw the first hectolitres of precious nectar coming out of his very shiny, new alembic. Can this all be done in an environmentally friendly way? This is important to Benoît who uses for his whisky distilling, local ingredients such as barley grown between Montauban and Gaillac. After picking and drying, the malting of the barley is done locally in Salvagnac (Tarn). The barley then begins a series of processes back at the distillery and as residue is produced it’s sent for use as animal feed or fertilizer. At the gleaming heart of the production there’s a large, gleaming copper alembic, with three individual tanks; equipment designed by Benoît and manufactured

for him by Alain Lagorsse, a coppersmith from St Amans de Coly. Whisky production takes time, a lot of time! So it’s not possible to sample the whisky yet. The young ‘whisky’ needs to spend 3 years resting in old oak-barrels (some coming from Cognac and Armagnac distilleries). Benoît has lovingly called the cellar where this resting takes place ‘la galaxie des anges’ – a place where his dreams are sleeping with the angels. So the world awaits the very first taste of BOWS whisky. Bearing in mind that from every 3000 litres of water added to the barley malt, Benoît expects to finish up with 180 litres of whisky, so it is a long process but also a very precious result. The length of time taken ‘resting’ whisky doesn’t mean that all is quiet at the distillery. The shorter processes involved in producing gin, rum and vodka means that Benoît’s range of spirits already has a growing number of fans. So you may have come across BANDAREL Gin, produced with juniper, coriander and iris roots giving it a particularly delicate and original flavour. Or the AROC Occitan Vodka, a pure spirit with no added flavours or sugar, or the very invocative ESTADOR Rum. Three months from the start and Benoît’s spirits are being enjoyed in Montauban (naturally), Paris, along the Riviera and even in Kuala Lampur! Soon you’ll be able to acquire these spirits from the distillerie’s proposed website. Why not ask at your local bar – see if they know about these locally distilled spirits? Spread the word about this imaginative man with literally barrels of energy! BOWS, 569 Chemin de Bégué, 82000 Montauban. Tel : 06 22 65 05 28 Follow Benoît’s progress on bowsdistillerie Researched by Valérie Rousseau – who never touched a drop!

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


78 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Tasting The Lot... at your place or mine? The summer months for me and all at Tasting The Lot, are dedicated to wine tasting, melons and figs. To be honest I wait all year for July and August to fill my cupboards with preserves (I am not sorry to say I have already started thinking about harvest festivals and Christmas!!) and my wine cellar with wonderful local rose, white and red wines!!

I

love this time of year, well actually there is something wonderful each month, even the snow is lovely! Whether you live here full time, have a second home, holiday home or are just visiting for a holiday, this is one of the most beautiful places to relax and enjoy life and all its amazing food and wine. The markets are now overflowing with wonderful produce that The Quercy can offer. We have something in The Lot and The Quercy that is tasty for all palates. There are great views, whether in the centres of the towns where the architecture is stunning or driving about the region it is impossible to miss the layers of history and the multitude of vineyards, farms and food producers. For over 25 years I have been visiting and living in this region. My main love (and job) is teaching about wine and wine tasting. To add a little bit more of a guided tour to the region I pair the local wines to local food. Focussing on non-English speaking small boutique vineyards and producers, encouraging tourists and those of us who live here all year round, to visit the places that don’t have enormous marketing and advertising budgets, or are so busy growing and making the food and wine we want to eat, that the market is their main selling place! Language is the only barrier,

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Boxing Day Chutney adapted from my Ma’s Constance Spry recipe

Château Le Brézéguet Vins AOC Cahors ~ Vins de Pays

Vins Chemin de Compostelle and Château Grand Chêne

Ingredients 2kg fresh figs, black and green mixed, de stalked and quartered 1kg granulated or demerara sugar (the darker the sugar the darker the final chutney) 1 ltr vinegar 1kg sultanas ½ kg onions sliced 2 small chillies finely chopped 1 inch fresh ginger crushed and finely chopped

Jean Longueteau

1 tsp mustard seeds Method Chop all the ingredients and place in stainless steel pan, add dry ingredients and pour over ½ ltr vinegar and simmer in a covered pan until all fruit soft. Pour the remaining vinegar over the sugar in a separate bowl and leave in a warm space for the sugar to dissolve. When fruit cooked pour over dissolved sugar and vinegar mix and cook uncovered until chutney thick and can draw spoon across the pan and you can see the bottom. Pour carefully into sterilised jars and seal. Keep in cupboard for 4-6 months to mature.

Château le Brézéguet, D656 46800 SAUX 09 61 32 82 70 / 06 82 84 56 30 chateaulebrezeguet@orange.fr You are welcome to visit and try our wine 14/08/2017 ~ ‘Pique-nique vigneron’’ From 6.30pm in the yard of Château Grand Chêne in Belaye

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


80 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

if you can’t speak French it can be very difficult to try new wines, learn about the region and the producers. Wine tasting is a very subjective thing. When I was studying Viticulture and Vinfication we were taught that wine tasters come into categories, novices, experimentalists and connoisseurs. Admitting honestly which one a person is, is for me, half the battle with wine tasting. I am an experimentalist! Even after 25 years in the Wine Trade I am still learning. Each year a new vintage brings new flavours, each new wine bottle, I hope, tastes different from the year before, there are so many things to make each year taste different, the weather for a start, this year we have had some terrible weather already and there are 5 months to go before the grapes are picked. Then there is the winemaker, each year it can change, different yeasts used impart different flavours and I love that about wine. For me, if a wine tastes the same year in year out, something is not quite right! A little bit like McDonalds tasting the same wherever you are in the world. Wine should not taste the same every year! Wine tasting in this wonderful region is terribly simple if you can speak French. Don’t let that stop you trying the most amazing wines. If a little apprehensive of visiting new places, unable to understand French or want to learn more about wine from an English speaking local, then why not get in touch. I can organise wine tastings at your holiday home for 6 and more people, explain about the wines, vineyards and organise a wine tasting for 6 or more in a box, please get in touch for more information or set you on the right trail. If you have a gîte, villa or a group coming to stay, Tasting The Lot can visit, bringing wines and some sample foods of the region and help enable a tour of the vineyards right at home, no need to worry about someone drink driving, we can talk you through the wines, vineyards and a little bit of history to help make the holiday.

This editions’ food is figs (melons too, but there have been some excellent articles about melons in The Quercy Local, check out the website for previous information and make sure you try the melons from Lectoure, Lauzerte and Montcuq!) Figs are absolutely delicious fresh. Very soon the markets will be full of them, eat them raw, baked drizzled with honey and Roquefort or goats cheese, sliced with local hams, chopped in salads or just eat them! Heaven. I am very lucky to have a few fig trees in my garden, if you don’t, your neighbour is bound to, once you say you like figs, then everyone starts sharing! Yes I said earlier I was already thinking about Christmas….sorry but this chutney is well worth the effort and it needs time to mature and so….yes, make some. It is delicious. For more information regarding wine tastings at home please contact tasting@tasting-the-lot.com or follow on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram Happy Tastings

Luci Cox www.poorpaws.com For information and enquiries about rescue dogs – so many dogs desperately looking for their ‘forever’ homes. contact Sue on 05 65 24 53 03 email: susan.glibbery@orange.fr

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Auberge de Miramont David & Karine look forward to welcoming you

Tapas Evening on the first Friday of each month. Lunches & evening meals ~ Monday to Saturday Catering for Special Events. 05 63 94 65 57 aubergemiramont@gmail.com auberge de miramont Miramont de Quercy (82190)

REGIONAL & TRADITIONAL COOKING PLUS PIZZA (ALSO TAKE AWAY) IN FRIENDLY ATMOSPHERE SEE OUR WEBSITE FOR FULL MENU

LE BOURG – SAINT DAUNES (46800)

09 66 84 46 57

www.restolecole.fr

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


82 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Meet the CHEF CÉDRIC FANTIN – AUBERGE DU BRELAN 0) Auberge de Brelan, Laboissière, 47370 ANTHÉ (near Tournon D’Agenais on the Cahors to Agen road) 05 53 40 78 08 www.aubergedubrelan.com

C

édric has been linked to the Auberge his whole life. His Grandfather, Guy, along with two other men called ‘Guy’ started the business back in 1969. Back then, it was simply a bar and a campsite, later becoming a ‘ferme-auberge’. It was not until 1985 that Cédric’s parents made the change to a restaurant. The name Le Brelan – comes from a poker term for three cards of the same value. Referencing back to the original 3 ‘Guys’. Over the years new buildings have been added to the traditional old house that nestled amongst the surrounding oak trees. Now, Cédric has the space to cope with one or two people dining right up to large events such as weddings and banquets. Cédric studied initially at the Ecole Hôtelière in Pujols (47) and held his first trainee position at ‘La Marmite en Folie’ in Toulouse. His qualifications in Pâtisserie meant he was able to secure places in two famous restaurants in Paris ‘Le Bristol’ and ‘Le Plazza Athenee’. Then in 2000 the Mayor of Tournon d’Agenais asked him to take control of the restaurant, Le Beffroi. Cédric then stayed and ran Tournon’s popular restaurant for 8 years. Then it was time for a change and to stretch his wings again. This time to ‘Chez Emile’ in Toulouse and then to New York and then Montreal where he was able to use both his culinary and patisserie skills to great use. In 2014, the pull of home brought Cédric back to take over the running of his parent’s restaurant.

Although, it’s fair to say, that they’re still there helping him, particularly when he has large outside or inside catering orders to fulfil. He’s regularly in charge of feeding large numbers of wedding guests, but equally can be found preparing meals to be delivered to local gîtes. (min. 8 people and 25km). Cedric brings a real ‘chef’s touch’ to his creations and his artistry is clear in all that he does. Importantly for many people (and himself) he is also able to provide gluten free food. (That is rare find, locally) From Easter to the beginning of November the Auberge du Brelan serves both typical local food ‘assiette du pays’ as well as offering fine-dining and some spectacular desserts. Desserts such as the very attractive recipe Cédric shares with us here.

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Macaroon Coconut/Raspberry, Passion Fruit Coulis, Mango Sorbet all decorated with an Oak Leaf Making the macaroon: • 340 g egg white • 150 g coconut powder • 350 g almond powder • 500 g icing sugar • 450 g castor sugar • Few poppy seeds

Passion Fruit Coulis:

• Mix together the icing sugar and coconut and almond powder. • Add half of the egg whites. • Meanwhile mix the other half of white eggs with castor sugar with electric mixer to make a meringue (Cédric suggests first mixing the egg whites and then adding the sugar which has been headed to a syrup at 121oC) • Cool the meringue mixture before adding to the first mixture with a spatula. • Pipe the macaroon mixture, onto a silicon sheet, in small round shapes. • Add a sprinkling of poppy seeds on top and leave for 30 min to dry. • Cook for 14 min in the oven at 140°C

Light vanilla cream: • 500g milk • 100g egg yolks • 100g castor sugar • 45g cornflour • 1 vanilla pod • 745g whipped cream • Mix sugar and egg yolks than add cornflour. • Add lightly warmed milk (add vanilla pod to the warming milk and allow to stand a while) to make a crème pâtissière. • When cooled add the whipped cream • Take a macaroon half, add the cream with a piping bag • Arrange raspberries around the edge • Add the other half of the macaroon

• 100 g mango puree • 150 g passion fruit puree • 0.5 g vanilla powder • 150 g castor sugar • 4 g pectin

If an our reay of ders make t we wo his dessert u see a pld love to icture!

QL

• Heat the purees • Mix sugar, pectin, vanilla and add to the fruits purees • Gently boil for a few mins • Allow to cool ready for decorating the plate

Oak Leaf: (for decoration) • 1150g melted butter • 75g icing sugar • 105g egg white • 150g flour (or rice flour for Gluten free option) • 100g apricot puree • 50g pistachio paste • Green food-colouring • Mix the icing sugar and flour in a mixer • Add the egg white, pistachio paste, melted butter, heated apricot puree and green colouring. • Allow to cool • Cut a stencil in the shape of a leaf • Lay the stencil on a silicon sheet and cover with the mixture • Cook for 8 min at oven 155°C. • Then remove from the stencil whilst still hot This lovely dessert can be served with a scoop of mango sorbet, and for an amazing dish why not, add a small strawberry candyfloss stick drizzled with a raspberry coulis!

PENSION ‘Bonnes Vacances’

Peaceful Cattery 5 spacious heated pens No dogs boarded TLC ensures ‘happy cats’ Per night: 1 cat 8e, 2 cats 10e, 3 cats 12e or 4 cats 14e

Lavolvene, Belveze 82150 jan.lemmy@wanadoo.fr Please call me for more info or to arrange a visit 05 63 94 38 47 06 43 53 04 52 (mb) Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


dehors

1 7, Boulevar d de la Madeleine, 46300 Gour don - 05 65 37 13 30

Tout pour la Piscine et Spa...

...pools & spas are our passion www.cps-dehor s.fr


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 85

Specialist holiday home rental agency with 25 years experience in the area Personal service for Owners, Caretakers, Property Managers & Guests Fast friendly response to all enquiries Global marketing and strong repeat customer base How do we differ?

- One package price to Guests with no hidden extras - Full payment to Owners a month before Guests arrive - All administra�on including Security deposits on behalf of Owners - Personal approach to Owners and Guests alike - No up front charges for Owners: Commission on bookings only

For a no obliga�on discussion please contact Halcyon Leisure

Bringing Owners the benefit of 25 years experience of letting holiday homes throughout Quercy & Lot

+44 (0)1 46 03 02 00 www.halcyonleisure.com book@halcyonleisure.com @HolHomesFrance on Twi�er for news

Follow our Facebook page for Guest informa�on & offers

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86 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

to their train or plane after they have been to stay, so that you can put your feet up just a little bit sooner. Incidentally, even in rural Quercy I do get the occasional celebrity gracing my very comfy seats. You may have heard about a distant cousin of mine – a VTC (voitures de tourisme avec chauffeur) or Private Hire. These VTCs didn’t have to follow just as many rules but things have got stricter (including driver testing, insurance and having to prove it’s a viable business). A VTC must always go back to its base between jobs and its driver has to quote upfront for the journey.

I

’m Jo, Jo Le Taxi! I’m what you’d call a Public Hire Vehicle in the UK. You can find me at a taxi rank (station de taxi) or if you are in town you can flag me down as long as I am at least 50m from a rank. Being in the countryside however, you are more likely to call my driver to ask him or her to collect you. You may have noticed that I have a lit taxi sign on my roof, telling you whether I’m available or not. Green means I’m available for hire and a red that I’m already engaged. Obviously it costs to ride in me and ‘how much’ depends on your local Prefecture as they set the rates annually. If you’re going a long way you can ask my driver for a ‘forfait’ to confirm the cost. The cost is based on 3 passengers only, if there are more then there may be further charges. It’s the same if you’ve excessive luggage with you, there may be a cost. Dogs, can ride in me if they’re ‘guide-dogs’ and I don’t mind most small dogs but even these can be refused by my driver and very large dogs may be refused or charged for. A few facts about my driver, he/she’s qualified, experienced, correctly insured and has to hold a special licence known as a ‘parking permit’. Drivers have to purchase their licences and these are limited, in number, in any area. In some places they’re very expensive. So why call me? Well, if you are going to a party, wine-tasting evening, wedding or just out for a good meal. Remember that the drink driving rules are much tighter in France than in the UK, so if in doubt, call me. (see below). Did you know that I’m also used as an ambulance for patient transportation? In some circumstances you can recover the cost of using me to get to hospital and doctors’ appointments? You can find out more from www.ameli.fr. I’ve heard of taxis travelling from our region as far as Paris with patients going for treatment. As well as getting you medical appointments I can also pick you up from the airport or station for your holidays or work. I can get your guests delivered back

A French taxi is not without its history – did you know that..? • In 1914 the military governor of Paris wanted to get the Army’s 7th Division off the congested railway. They were due to join the 6th Division at the front to defend Paris. He thought “Why not use taxis?” All Parisian taxis were immediately assembled. “What about the fare,” asked a driver? Payment was eventually made at 27% of the meter reading. • Harry Nathaniel Allen of The New York Taxicab Company, imported, from France, New York’s first 600 gas-powered taxicabs in 1907. Travel safely – Jo Le Taxi Now a sobering thought • The limit for alcohol in the blood is 0.5g (or 0.2g for probationary licence holders) • As a crude ‘rule of thumb’ an average 12 st. man can consume no more than 2 small glasses of wine or he risks being over the limit. • You can be stopped and breathalysed by the Police or Gendarmerie. • Between 0.5 g and 0.8 g of alcohol per litre/blood, you’re committing a ‘violation of the 4th class’ with a fixed penalty of 6 points and fine of 135e. • Over 0.8 g of alcohol per litre/blood, you’re committing a crime and you’ll have to go to court. There may be a fine of up to e4500, 2 years imprisonment, and a licence suspension of up to 3 years. With thanks to Taxi Roquentin and Taxi Occitanie for their help in providing information

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THE QUERCY LOCAL • 87

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2 large, air-conditioned cars, one for 7 and one for 5 people. Service to and from stations and airports Also ‘medical’ transport – Conventionné assurance maladie Child seats and wheelchair access 24 hrs / 7 days – Any distance

Mob: 06.32.10.63.36 Tel: 05.63.04.20.19 email: taxioccitanie@alsatis.net Based – 82200 MONTESQUIEU

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


88 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Getting away from it all Sometimes we just want to get away from it all, without the need to book flights or drive endlessly. So here we’ve picked 4 ideas for you or maybe for your visitors (so that they can go off and have their own mini adventures). We’ve gone for 4 ‘H’s – with High-up , History, Horses and Happy. We hope you’ll find something of interest.

High-up Pella Roca In the heart of the rolling Quercy countryside, where oak trees and truffle hunting form the traditional back drop you can find a traditional white stone, majestically imposing pigeonnier. This marks the location for a very different type of break, not at all a traditional place to stay. Pella Roca (between Belfort du Quercy and Puylaroque) offers 3, very high specification, tree-top cabins with all the luxury necessary for a totally detoxifying break, perhaps a little time to breath and if you can bear to leave your cabin then they also make a perfect base for visiting some of the lovely historic villages and towns close by. If you enjoy nature and heights then maybe you’ll enjoy the tranquillity that sleeping amid the tree tops provides. The Japanese have a word, Komorebi, which means ‘the interplay between sunlight and leaves’ and this is exactly what you’ll be surrounded by. Once (and if ever) down from your sky-high cocoon you’ll find a swimming pool, tennis courts and plenty of space for children to play. The design of these romantic cabins demonstrates real thought and consideration. They are built from locally sourced, natural materials using the skills of local artisans in a Scandinavian. The accommodation is ideal for couples and would be perfect for a romantic-getaway but there are also secret doors in the cabins which hide sleeping quarters for two children, so the whole family can go! Each cabin has its own tree-top terrace with a ‘nordic bain’ and sauna and for cooler months (as the site is open all year) there’s a wood burning stove in each cabin. Glorious baskets of local and gourmet foods can be provided for the perfect pic-nic on your own terrace in amongst a leafy canopy. Baskets of breakfast can be delivered to your cabin and for a truly lazy start to the day, your hosts can offer a sumptuous ‘brunch’ basket. Each cabin also has a small kitchenette, so you can chose to

prepare, for yourself, the delicacies that you may picked up on local markets. So if you want to bring out your romantic side, or your nature loving persuasions or you know someone that should be doing just that – you need to find out a little more about the dizzy heights of Pella Roca. contact@pella-roca.com, Tel: 05 63 02 85 14, www.pella-roca.com visted by Valérie Rousseau

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History Rocamadour Rocamadour is closer than you think and it’s one of France’s most visited sites. I went to stay for 3 days at the end of May, there were lots of visitors in the town and a real mix of nationalities; literally people from all over the world. I stayed at the Beau Site Hotel which is right in the middle of the ‘action’ – café bars, gift shops and is surrounded by restaurants which clinked glasses from late-afternoon as they prepared for dinner. My bedroom’s large windows opened, to one side, over these happy scenes and to the other side they displayed the ancient buildings above. The hotel is in two parts. The main building, where I stayed, backed onto the rock face and the restaurant, terrace and bar were across the narrow road and enjoyed great views of the gorge that fell right away below. The hotel has an impressive almost ‘baronial’ reception. The staff were all lovely, helpful and extremely thoughtful. The restaurant was ‘not to be missed’ and breakfast a real treat. Parking could’ve been a nightmare – but for hotels and restaurants cars are allowed along the street. The hotel had a small car park and they managed guests’ cars with amazing dexterity. Travelling with me was my small dog, Mimi. She was welcomed at the hotel and the town in general with plenty of bowls of water left out for passing dogs. She’s a good girl and enjoyed the very best of local fare. On the subject of ‘local fare’ things are not so different to the rest of the region. Except, of course, the wonderful local goats’ cheese which is served for every meal of the day. Whether your interest is in the town’s religion, history or architecture, if you’ve not been before you are almost bound to be impressed. Yes, there’s a degree of commercialisation – but the place has to survive somehow! To explore you need to cope with flights of stone steps. Alternatively, you can take the little lift through the rocks to the next level and then take a tilt lift to the top. Rocamadour offers different things to different people. Go to admire the history, sacred places, wonder at the medieval architecture or just go for some peace and a change of scene. Best of all you’re still not far from home, no days wasted in the car and your packing will not have had time to get creased. www.bestwestern-beausite.com visted by Anna Atkinson Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


90 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Horses

Les Roulottes du Pigeonnier

How many people have family visiting that would love time out with a much slower-pace-of-life and even a horse of their own (even for just a little while)? They (and you) need to meet Bernard and his Roulottes du Pigeonnier. Valerie, from our office went to find out a little more. This is what she had to say. You’ll be welcome from the minute you arrive at Bernard and Cathy’s lovely country cottage, a place where they’ve created an oasis of trees, plants and flowers. A place where the people and the animals share their daily life and adventures. The cottage is situated just next to Bernard’s family farm. Where there’s a small milk herd and even Jersey cows. (When Valerie visited there were 5 new calves – and I think they stole her heart). Of course, and most importantly, there are the 10 horses (breeds - Comtois, Bretons, Ardennais and Percherons) answering to the names of: Sam, Vicomte, Sunny, Muguette, Rosy, Jentou, Etoile, Caillou, Jally and Belle. This is a perfect place for children and animal lovers. These horse-filled holidays are completely flexible, whether you want to disappear down the lanes for just a night, a full week or something in between. Or maybe you’d prefer to stay at Bernard’s gîte and just take trips with a horse and char during the day. Bernard has lots of suggested routes for you around the Lomagne area (The little Tuscany of the Gers) including lovely places such as Lamothe-Cumont, Maubec, Tournecoupe or a little further away to Boulogne sur Gesse, Saramon or Simorre. If you decide to spend a full week with your horse you can head down to the Pyrénées and the Plateau de Lannemezan. You will be up and down hills, maybe even including Le Petit Tourmalet with its 300m ascent. Then there’s the ‘Route des Pigeonniers’ so named because of the numerous stunning pigeonniers you’ll pass. Bernard has 7 caravans, they’re cosy and sleep 4/5 people with 1 large bed plus bunk beds – and you can also add mattresses. There’s a small kitchen for simple food preparation. Dogs are more than welcome and are a regular sight in the caravans and the horses are used to having them about – they are extremely well trained horses! There are plenty of pre-arranged halts (at campsites and guest houses) where you’ll find toilets, washing facilities and maybe an evening meal. Or maybe some of your group may prefer a night’s sleep ‘out of the caravan’ and can sleep in the guest house. Here you The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


THE QUERCY LOCAL • 91

can tether your horse, find shade and simply enjoy your new slow-lifestyle. This is a chance to be completely surrounded by nature, just you, your family and ‘your’ horse picking your routes along the many beautiful valleys. A quick stop, here and there, for your horse to re-fuel and time for yet another family adventure. It doesn’t matter if you have had no experience with horses, Bernard is never far away and he is always ready to help and to show you how to do things. In fact Bernard is everywhere all-at-the-same- time. He’s running his farm, welcoming new guests, and accompanying people on the first leg of their journey. Then he is back cooking an evening meal for people staying in the gîte and for those people spending their last caravanning night back on the farm. In between this he will be raising his ducks, arranging for the blacksmith to change the horses’ shoes and oiling the harness. All of this with a smile on his face and obvious joy in his heart The only sadness will be the day you have to return your horse and caravan and get back to your ‘fast’ life. It’s not uncommon to see children wiping a tear away as they leave Sam or Rosy …. Whether you’re from Holland, Belgium, Germany, UK, Australia or Hawaï, you’ll find at Les Roulottes du Pigeonnier the very best of welcome and genuine kindness. Bernard’s love for the area, nature, animals and mankind are the main reasons you’ll want to come back. Bernard and of course his majestic and oh so gentle horses! Cathy et Bernard Gaynes, 82500, Faudoas, 05.63.65.21.31/06.86.46.59.00 www.roulottesdupigeonnier.com Photos and research by Valérie Rousseau (who would have stayed much longer)

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


92 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Happy

The Happy Hamlet

Happy holidays with a theme, maybe every-so-often you’d like to do something, just for yourself. Well, working on the principle that you don’t really need to travel too far to find just what you need – we thought you’d love to hear about The Happy Hamlet. This is a new venture for Suska, who was born in Finland but is also a Czech citizen and who has worked internationally for many years including New York and Djibouti – which is where she met her partner Nico – who is originally from northern France but who has been overseas most of his working life. The couple bought their ‘hamlet’ in Fauroux (82190) in 2016 and began to breathe new life into the old traditional buildings. Offering the old stone façades a new start, rejuvenation and purpose, just as they hope to offer to their guests in the future! Suska and Nico are creating an environment that represents what they hope for in their own futures. One that offers - a chance of a slower pace of life, an opportunity to commune closely with nature, homegrown produce, fresh clean-air and the chance to maybe learn something new. The Hamlet is proving an incredible labour of love. The huge old barn has been turned into a great venue for group classes (when outside will not do) as well as a dining room, place for wine-tasting, concerts, kitchen for cookery classes etc. It has stunning views across the valley and even under-floor heating for the cooler months. Then hidden amongst the trees there’s a natural swimming pool and even a lovely wooden sauna (in a very large barrel). In the woods Suska and Nico have discovered a natural spring fed pool which makes a wonderful shady spot to while-away the time during the summer heat. Amongst the hectares of space you’ll find two rather lovely goats, hard at work, keeping the abundant greenery under control. This is a long term project, there are plans for an even larger vegetable garden, further renovations and an even larger selection of ‘themed’ holidays for guests to enjoy. Currently for this year you can find breaks such as:• yoga, pilates, meditation, taiji • cookery and wine • photography, painting, drawing • jazz improvisation • team building, coaching, professional & personal development The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


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Having both had highly international previous careers, Suska and Nico have the contacts to attract some very inspiring instructors, who are travelling from all over the world to be at The Happy Hamlet. Suska aims to invite the best to ensure they in turn provide only the best. We particularly love the way different themes are mixed up so that, for instance, this summer there is proposed a themed week entitled ‘Pilates for Wine Lovers’. That does sound like a great combination. So, if you’re looking for a luxurious, sleek or fashionable holiday – then walk on by. This is a location for small groups who will appreciate that it is a charming, comfy, relaxed-retreat and most of all, that it’s a happy place. In between offering retreats The Happy Hamlet offers simple chamber d’hôtes accommodation and Suska and Nico are keen to see what else they might do with their considerable inside and outside space all hidden away in their rather, Happy Hamlet. The Happy Hamlet, Lieu dit Gary, 82190 Fauroux. 07 71 73 94 36 hello@thehappyhamlet.com www.thehappyhamlet.com visited by Anna Atkinson

BIKE REPAIR Small repairs up to full custom builds Cytech certified mechanic with over a decade’s experience Delivery & Collection option (FREE within selected postcodes – see website for details)

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BIKE HIRE No peak season prices Same price, all year – 20e/day 7 days from only 100e* Delivery & Collection available (FREE within selected postcodes – see website for details)

Top specification Scott bikes available (mountain & hybrid) All necessary accessories supplied Bikes serviced & maintained by a Cytech certified mechanic

www.velo-plus.net +33 (0)7 80 57 81 49 veloplushire@gmail.com Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • July - August 2017


94 • THE QUERCY LOCAL

Ironwood Motif Artist Blacksmith, Ferronnerie d’Art

In business in France since 2005, we create outstanding traditional and contemporary ironwork for indoors and outdoors. Pergolas, staircases, railings, handrails, balustrades, balconies, gates, sculptures, outdoor structures and more... simple or elaborate, intricate or uncomplicated, small or large, we can fabricate, forge and hand make ironwork customised to your needs.

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Take a look at our website and follow us on Ironwood Motif, Ferronnerie d’Art and on Instagram Ironwood Motif 46330, BLARS, 00 33 (0)5 65 30 53 99, www.ironwoodmotif.com SIRET: 481 198 638 00019

Safe Hands Haulage is a professional, competitive, full registered and insured company offering a wide range of transportation services. Full and part loads including complete house moves throughout Europe. We have many different types of vehicles in order to transport household belongings, building material, tools and vehicles.

Please contact Jon on Jon@SafeHandsHaulage.com (from UK) 00 33 5 53 79 26 48 (in France) 05 53 79 26 48 Mobile (from UK) 00 33 6 50 54 86 80 (in France) 06 50 54 86 80

www.safehandshaulage.com The Quercy Local • July - August 2017 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


LEGGETT

LOCAL KNOWLEDGE YOU CAN TRUST

Buying or selling a property? We have over 20 years experience and a friendly and dedicated team of support staff

We hav over 16 e 00 propert 0 i for sale es our we on bsite

ensuring clients receive the best possible service. Our professional, fully trained and multi-lingual agents living and working in the region are ready to help. Please contact us on

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or email your local client coordinator

emily@leggett.fr

www.leggettfrance.com

Tel: 0033(0)5 53 56 62 54 Head Office: 42 Rue de RibĂŠrac 24340 La Rochebeaucourt France

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The Quercy Local July-August 2017  

A free regional magazine for the ‘English Speakers’ of the Quercy region of S W France – covering the Lot, Lot et Garonne and Tarn et Garonn...

The Quercy Local July-August 2017  

A free regional magazine for the ‘English Speakers’ of the Quercy region of S W France – covering the Lot, Lot et Garonne and Tarn et Garonn...