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May – June 2018 Issue 34

uercy Local The

The Region’s FREE magazine in English

Inside – Bees, Gloucester Old Spots & Microgreens Wedding Venues, The Pilgrim’s Choice & Cherry Sauce Much Ado About Nothing Caylus & Penne d’Agenais

Hotel, Restaurant and Spa. In the heart of the region and close to you. Why not try our lunchtime ‘Menu du Marché’ (3 courses + coffee)? Monday to Friday (except holidays) and enjoy an amazing view of the River Tarn - only 20 € ~ Don’t forget, every Friday evening it’s our cocktail ‘happy hour’ from 6 to 7pm: two for the price of one! Hotel & SPA Le Moulin de Moissac*** 1 Promenade Sancert - 82 200 Moissac Tel : + 33 5 63 32 88 88 - Fax : + 33 5 63 32 02 08 E-Mail: Hotel & Spa le Moulin de Moissac

don’t forget next visit

book direct book

buggs all new fleet for 2018 small sma

ll fu n




t fu n estate



7 sea te


sports fun

bergerac - biarritz - limoges


Hopefully this edition will find you enjoying some lovely sunshine and with the rather difficult winter and springweather long forgotten.

CONTENTS Strike up the Broadband Cycle for Life 2018

p.8 p.10

Wedding Venues


Lemon and Rosemary Cupcakes


Microgreens and Me


Options for your UK Pension


Our aim, as always, is to help highlight local business and help people let everyone know about their activities. So, in this edition we have been delighted to find out more about Nikki’s, canal based, microgreen business (see p.26), Mark and Brice’s lovely restaurant (see. P.68) as well as Naomi and her lovely Gloucester Old Spots (see p. 46).

The Pilgrim’s Choice




Caylus’ Gloucester Old Spots


In this edition the two towns we’ve been delighted to visit are Caylus and Penne d’Agenais. It’s been interesting finding out a bit more the towns and particularly what people have been in touch to tell us about.

Penne d’Agenais


Rosé Wine


Late summer in the region would not be the same without Antic Disposition’s annual Shakespeare Tour. This August they are performing Much Ado About Nothing. Again, this year you can win front row tickets to a performance venue of your choice (see p.82).

How Self Aware are You?


The next edition will be out for the start of July. In the meantime you can follow us on Facebook, Instagram or via our website. Please, as always, we ask you to support our advertisers whenever possible.

Anna Email:


Anglican Chaplaincy – Cahors


Wines of S W France


La Seye et Vous – Resaurant


Your Horse’s Core Stability


Exchanging your UK Driving Licence


Bees, Clever and in Decline


Insurance – Reporting an Accident


Tasting the Lot


Companion Planting


Much Ado About Nothing




From our website you can – subscribe to receive the magazine directly to your home, read the magazines on line, sign up for our newsletter, add your business to our free on-line directory and find our advertising rates. You can follow us on @Perigord_Quercy quercy.local Instagram - perigordandquercylocals

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.



Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018



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. With a Head Office on the main boulevard in Cahors and a local and international client data base we can help you with all aspects of buying and selling your French property. You can contact Marianne Charpentier on 06 71 71 77 22 or, at You can also visit our website: Mouly Immobilier, 4 Avenue de la Promenade, 46800, Montcuq The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Nestled in the Seoune Valley, La Grange de Truffes offers you a chance to explore a large, wonderful selection of collectables, antiques and furniture. You are welcome to visit and browse our eclectic exhibitions of the beautiful, curious and inspiring.

welcomes you to Montjoi We are open from Thursday - Sunday, 11am - 7pm & every day in July & August Come and discover the artists, painters and sculptors that we’re sure will captivate you! Private viewings are possible – please call

art27galerie - rue du Porche - 82400 MONTJOI edwige capelle - art27galerie

Open Thurs - Sun, 11am - 7pm ~ April - Oct Lieu dit Truffes 82400 MONTJOI; 06 32 19 84 41 Out of season by RDV See Facebook for news and events GPS Latitude 44.194, Longitude 0.909. From the village of Montjoi, take road to Saint Maurin we are 250m on the LHS.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Strike up the broadband With France now 15th in global connectivity speed, Terence Kennedy is in a fever about his new fibre


ntil a few months ago, where I live in the Quercy it was quicker to send out a messenger with a cleft stick than to use e-mail. My credit card expired while I was ordering online. Then despite the hesitance of the town’s elderly inhabitants who still think the Interweb is the devil’s spawn, we received a wonderful gift: fibre-optic broadband. I don’t want to spoil it for the rest of you living in seriously inferior settlements, but what a joy it is to send an e-mail and not have to brew up a cuppa while waiting for the progress bar. How ecstatic it is to click a news-site video and not get stop-motion puppetry. It almost didn’t happen, after the town fathers questioned the need for such new-fangled jiggerypokery. That it would cost some of us a few coins more a month almost sank the deal. Fortunately, thieves came to our rescue (not a sentence I ever thought I would write). They stole Bourg de Visa’s copper feeder cable, twice, and the service provider decided to give us fibre whether we wanted it or not. As indeed did Mr Kellogg all those breakfasts ago. And what a joy it is after our prehistoric ADSL which trickled out a painful 1.5 Mbps on a really good day, courtesy of that excellent site for testing broadband speed, If you’re not yet on a digital fibre diet, the local Mairie is of course the font of all knowledge to ask how high your area might be on the list. Politicians regularly promise high-speed internet for the whole of France by 2019, or 2022, or 2025, pick a number but don’t hold your breath. A good site to track just how the fibre wind is blowing locally is Tarn-et-Garonne Numérique’s Facebook page, even if just to see how the other half lives and weep: Unless you’re in a city where some lucky users have what’s called FTTH, or fibre-to-the-home, the more likely option here is FTTC, fibre-to-the-cabinet, where a magic box will suddenly appear in a central point, and will then redistribute the high-speed signal by traditional copper cable to your home. The further you are from the box the slower your signal will be over this geriatric copper line, the chain’s weakest link.

Come the big day that your area gets fibre and the wilful destruction of the appropriate ribbon by local bigwigs, don’t assume you’ve automatically struck connectivity gold. First, not every operator signs up (initially) for inclusion in the local switching box; in our town the choice was Orange or Free, so tough luck for those wanting to stay with SFR, Bouygues and the like. You also need to update your contract (usually at no extra charge) and swap your ‘ADSL’ Livebox or its equivalent. If you don’t you will still experience a significant boost in speed (10 Mbps is an average achievement if you do nothing) – but that’s a bit like having a Ferrari and keeping it in first gear. Switch to the proper ‘VDSL’ contract and box and you can surf stratospherically: up to 100 Mbps if you’re really lucky, and you have the option of watching French TV online in perfect digital quality if you lease the separate decoder. The bad news: VDSL only reaches a kilometre or so from the distribution box. Friends on the edge of our town can almost see the distribution box (albeit with binoculars), but are nevertheless stuck at carrier-pigeon level. For such unfortunates there may still be options for improving connectivity, other than lobbying your service provider and local authorities. Or moving. Or indeed stealing the copper cable. With no immediate prospect of fibre relief, you may have two other options: mobile or satellite.

The Quercy Local • March-April 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


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

46700 Puy l’Évêque - 09 67 46 02 63 - 06 42 69 83 92 Si re t: 503806275 0 0 023

Selling cellular ACCESSING mobile data is not just the preserve of phones and tablets. You can buy a MiFi gadget for home and mobile use for e100 or less. Type ‘amazon france hotspot’ into your search engine and you’ll see any number of more or less affordable options, and of course other vendors are available. Buy your gadget, insert a data-enabled SIMcard, plug it in or use its battery, and you’ve got a 3G/4G WiFi ‘router’ which will pump out a normal WiFi signal to any number of users in your home, whether on computer, tablet or smartphone. The cheaper DIY solution is firing up your smartphone’s WiFi hotspot, activated in your phone’s settings. Do be aware though that leaving it on continuously will hammer your phone’s battery, so keep it on charge. You can continue using your phone throughout. But perhaps you have an old smartphone lurking in a drawer which you could dedicate to hotspotting? Or just bite the bullet, buy a cheap second smartphone, feed in a SIMcard and away you go. Because you’re worth it.

Satellite is the ultimate and perhaps only choice for those far out ‘au milieu de nulle part’; but it’s expensive and prone to crippling traffic jams, especially when the kids get home for a happy evening of slaughtering people online. If you’re lucky enough to be in range of a cellular tower, you could ‘go mobile’, especially now that

mobile data packages are dropping in price. Unless you’re contemplating watching Game of Thrones online instead of on telly like the rest of us, 10 or 20 GB of data a month should do nicely thank you, at an affordable price. No doubt you already know whether your area has a good mobile signal; with only about a third of France covered by 4G that’s still a rural rarity, but 3G or its faster brother HSDPA is certainly better than a kick in the modem for those still straggling. Among the interactive maps showing just what mobile coverage you might expect (in theory…) here’s one which is easy to use: If you haven’t selected an operator, you’ll want a mobile package which inflicts the least pain on your purse. Typically now you might pay just e10 a month for 20 GB of mobile data. Try this for starters: You don’t even have to buy a special modem to do it; just turn on your smartphone’s hotspot and bingo, you’ve got your own new WiFi source in the house, driven from your SIMcard; find out how in the accompanying panel. And if even that doesn’t work, and your internet is still so slow it would be quicker to drive to Google’s headquarters in Paris to ask them your question? Well, you could always upgrade. To a dial-up package... Irish author, journalist and techno-geek Terence Kennedy settled in the Quercy four years ago and no longer needs two cardboard cups joined by string to contact the neighbours.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018




his is the fourth bike ride organised by CSF and before you read any further – or feel two weeks cycling is just too daunting for words, the idea is that you can cycle as much or as little as you like. It is a wonderful opportunity for families to pack up and take off for a day, several days or whatever they feel like and whichever section of the route best takes their fancy. It can attract folk who are joyfully recovering from cancer or people who want to honour friends or loved ones they may have lost to the disease.... straightforward cycling enthusiasts, first timers or simply anyone, such as you or me. Often a family member or friend will drive a support vehicle, carrying camping equipment, food, first aid or gin and tonic – or a camper van offering instant rest and accommodation, which sounds rather blissfully 5-star. However, members of CSF will also be providing transportation of luggage etc along the route for anyone who requires it. This year the route has been planned to start at Royan on the Gironde and finishing at Marseillan Plage on the Mediterranean before heading back to Agde, for logistical reasons – namely the train station. The route pretty much follows that famous old Canal du Midi, a UNESCO Heritage Site since 1996. The ride is sponsored and indeed, a fundraising Cancer Awareness exercise (get the pun?) so all donations are gratefully received. By the way, unlike the UK where the actual charity benefits more from your gift with an additional Government contribution – in France, say you give e100 to the charity and declare it, you personally will receive a tax credit back of 66% – in this case e66 – so you can actually afford to be more generous, knowing that much credit will find its way back into your purse by being deducted from your tax bill. All donations will receive a receipt which you keep towards your tax reconciliation. You can also use Paypal or Alvarum. Back to the bike ride – each day starts with Registration between 9 and 10am. The cycling day is

varied but covers around 50 kms and will finish between 16.00 and 17.00 except the final day at Agde (21 kms) where it will end at about mid-day with a reception. There are two rest days, 21st May in Bordeaux and 28th May in Carcassonne. Once you have entered, you will receive a Participant’s Pack from Sasha, giving the map, meal ideas, suggested places to stay such as moderately priced hotels, camp sites, etc Of course you can also get the T-shirt. This year the Mayors and Adjoints along the way have been notified and hopefully will ask their locals to turn out and welcome the cyclists as they pass by or stop for lunch. How great it would be if various villages offered a bit of cheer, a little hospitality maybe in the form of ice cream or fruit juice etc. Altogether it is hoped that it will be a hugely successful and memorable event. So, shake off the cold, wet winter, stir up those kids – or grandkids – beg, borrow, steal or hire a couple of wheels and off you whizz. All information at: or and click onto the Cycle for Life page. If you are interested in taking part, contact Sasha at: Cancer Support France is a national and voluntary service, offering support for English speaking people touched by cancer in France. If you need help, call 0800 240 200 or email: helpline@ One of our team will contact you within 24 hours. Call free from a landline, your call will be taken on an answerphone.

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local



Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018

SARL TOUBELMONT Your local professional contact with Environmental Warranties (Qualisol, Qualipac, Qualibois, Qualibat) A WELL-KNOWN LOCAL FIRM WITH A GREAT REPUTATION

SWIMMING POOLS Since 2004 TOUBELMONT has specialised in the quality design, construction and landscaping of swimming pools, spa and saunas. Supplying and fitting pool-liners, water-treatment equipment, automatic pool covers and heating solutions. We are happy to guide you to help you achieve your project, provide maintenance and an after-sales service. We offer you a professional, quality service with a ten-year guarantee. For more information or to make an appointment please contact us.

LANDSCAPING The creation and maintenance of landscaped areas. Including grass-cutting, turf laying (either real or synthetic).

BUILDING Restoration of stone buildings, including re-jointing. Drainage both new and renewal. Electrical and plumbing work either new or renewal. Heating: including renewable energy (Red Label), boilers, fuel, gas, wood, granules, heat pumps, air conditioning and solar.

Laveroque 82150 BELVEZE TĂŠl. 05 63 94 30 51- Port. 06 70 72 37 75


For a romantic lunch or dinner on the terrasse or a glass of wine at the « Wine Bar » The RESTAURANT Menu Terroir and à la Carte from 35€ to 50€ Open daily for lunch and dinner

Wine Bar

Le Bistrot de Stéphanie

A choice of wine by glass (from 3,50 to 5€)

A formula “Table d’Hôte”at the Wine Bar

open from Monday to Saturday 18h30 to 21h Every day’s suggestion of a two courses

(except Monday and Tuesday-Saturday lunch)

Happy Hour every Thursday from 18 to 19h Choice of tapas on Thursday

menu at 20€ (cheese or dessert at 6€) open from Monday to Saturday 18h30 to 21h

Book your table : 05 63 95 25 61 –

Situated nearby Roquecor – Saint Beauzeil (D656 road Agen-Cahors) -

GRENIER AUX ARTISTES Art Gallery in Roquecor open from Tuesday to Sunday morning

Cement Tiles, and garden furniture/decorations - including Moroccan and Vintage styles Tel. 05 63 39 96 46 Mobile. 06 80 36 54 99

Parc d’exposition de 3 hectares Show Room - Livraison dans toute la France

Wholesaler of renovation, construction and decorative materials Vast selection of paving stones and travertine. Everything for your outdoor space Tél 05 63 95 39 08 Pont Rout, 82110 LAUZERTE

Ouvert du Lundi au vendredi de 8h à 12h et de 13h30 à 17h30; Le samedi de 9h à 12h : du 1er octobre au 31 avril; Le samedi de 9h à 12h et de 14h à 17h : du 1er mai au 30 septembre


NEW Produits du Terroir and increased selection of local wines

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 05 63 95 25 78 / 06 82 84 56 30 Delphine and Jean Longueteau

Kathy’s China & Cutlery Hire Up to 120 covers Minimum Hire Charge 40e Free Delivery 40km from Valeilles (82150) Rent it clean and send it back dirty!


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: Siret: 802 145 706 00015 Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


WeddingVenues All eyes will be on Windsor this May. Not to be outdone, we’ve had a quick look to find our own stunning, regional Wedding Venues. Here’re a couple of places that would be perfect for anyone planning an incredible celebration but without access to the Royal Residencies. Each described by those who know them best.

Château Plombis

Just a few minutes’ walk from the picturesque medieval village of Castelsagrat, in the Tarn et Garonne, stands Château Plombis. The history of the Château is a little sketchy, but the oldest parts of the building probably started life early in the 18th century as a rather grand house which has been extended over the centuries by the various families. One of these families, so the story goes, owned a fleet of châteaux all over France. They decided, on a whim, to indulge in a little ‘corporate branding’, and an architect was employed to homogenise the look of the family’s various country seats. And so, Château Plombis, as we know it today, took shape. Built from the local, pale, honey-coloured sandstone, this fairy-tale Château is warm and welcoming both

inside and out. It’s framed by both huge, ancientcedars and specimen-trees on its large front lawn. The Château boasts 25 hectares of grounds, including a swimming-pool, tennis court, woodland, meadows, and extensive lawns and orchards. All our guests are encouraged to make use of and enjoy all of these. Stallholder

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


La Cuisine de Karla


• Breakfast, lunch and/or dinner during your holiday • Family reunions • Parties ….weddings or birthdays…. • Delivery services and arrival packs during your holiday

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

Please contact me for information, prices, quotes & menus

Mob: Tel: email: Based – 82200 MONTESQUIEU

Is here for all your catering needs – up to 75 people

Karla Wagenar 0033 (0)563045517 or 0033 (0)628147136

la cuisine de karla


Inside is no less impressive: on the first floor 8 spacious bedrooms (7 of these en-suite), lead from a grand central hallway and accommodate up to 19 people. Downstairs, open living-spaces flow from one into another, with cosy areas around large fireplaces, a billiards room, and a study in the round tower. To one side of the Château a long building houses the Orangery and the old stables. The Orangery is an impressive space with grand, arched-windows overlooking the front lawn and swimming-pool.

Séverine DALPOZO

This light-filled room serves as a function room and can seat up to 100 people. Beyond an interconnected central pigeoneer tower are the old stables. This part of the building has been refurbished for the 2018 season to create a further undercover entertaining space, with wide arches opening onto the Château. In previous years, a popular picture-postcard setting for wedding breakfasts has been The Clearing in front of the Château, beneath the cedar trees, whether under the cover of marquees or open to the balmy summer air of a magical south-west France starry night! The Clearing, a short walk from the château along a shaded grassy lane, makes a truly stunning setting for a wedding ceremony and cocktail reception. This idyllic tree-shaded spot surveys the beautiful Séoune valley below and looks across to the pretty village of Montjoi on the opposite hill. Time your ceremony just right and you can have the bells of Montjoi church ringing in celebration of your union and marriage vows. The gorgeous, photogenic grounds and buildings of Château Plombis will provide endless backdrops and wonderful memories for a truly romantic and unforgettable wedding. To find out more about this venue: Contact: Alexis Photo Credits Château Plombis &

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


For our second venue we move over to the Lot et Garonne...

Château de Sainte Foy Château de Sainte Foy d’Anthé (47370) is a typical Gascon Château with its own Chapel. It was first recorded in the 13th century (but is probably a little older than that) and it takes its name from the monks of Sainte Foy de Conques. Today there is a whole new purpose for this very old château – now its future is linked with the futures of couples hoping to marry within its ancient walls. During the 16th century, the powerful Chasteigner family transformed the Château into the quadrangle with four towers, as seen today. Shortly afterwards, the family strengthened their Quercy powerbase with a marriage into the equally powerful Loubejac family. The coats of arms depicting both families are carved above the entrance, on the east façade of the Château. The building was fortified further during the Religious Wars of the 17th century. Around this time the beautiful Renaissance Gallery (in the north wing) with its superimposed arches was built. The date of 1610 is carved above its main entrance. The Château’s most famous resident was Bishop Germain de Chasteigner (1712 – 81) who was born at the Château and baptised in its Chapel. He became a The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local



05 53 95 95 95 06 81 22 47 89

4 x 6-seater cars

with superb stone fireplaces and four-poster beds. Then there’s the stunning vaulted hall and the large courtyard beyond (seating 240 people) all of which will make your ‘special day’ one to remember. This lovely old property is surrounded by beautifully managed gardens which you, your guests and your wedding photographer are sure to enjoy. This is a romantic setting. Importantly though, a wedding here means linking your life-story to the renewed life-story of a place as old as time. A place where history really is steeped in the walls. Please feel free to arrange to come and see us and see if we can be where your dreams come true. To find out more about this venue: Contact: Phillipe & Gabrielle Photo Credits: Château de Sainte Foy

Sacred Bishop at Versailles, and Chaplain to Louis XV, escorting him during the French victory at the Battle of Fontenoy in 1745. He was the Bishop of Saintes at the time of his death and was buried in the nave of Saintes Cathedral. The Chasteigner family occupied the Château for 300 years until it was sold to become a farm. Restoration began in 1979. The current owners Phillipe and Gabrielle Castaing are continuing the process of breathing new life into the Château de Sainte Foy. You will find a medieval Chapel, a courtyard garden overlooked by Renaissance arches, medieval bedrooms Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018



1 8 7

What constitutes problem behaviour in cats? Your cat’s ‘problem’ behaviour will always be based on your own subjective assessment and perception of what constitutes a problem and what feels wrong. This may be something as vague as a sense that “he’s not himself” or maybe you’ve noticed your cat’s routine and patterns of behaviour have changed suddenly.

BIKE REPAIR ALL TYPES OF BIKES MAINTENANCE OF GÎTE/HIRE BIKES Based in Touffailles (82190) behind the post office

+33 (0)7 80 52 59 62 - Check

page for opening hours



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: Or contact Elizabeth Cross on +33(0)788279014 or

However, most of the behaviours that owners seek advice about have been misinterpreted by them as ‘bad behaviour’, such as house soiling or aggression. Usually these behaviours will be perfectly normal for the species but are being performed in a location or circumstance that is unacceptable for the owner. For example, it is perfectly normal for cats, under stress or in situations of conflict, to spray urine as a form of communication. It is not, however, acceptable to an owner for the cat to spray urine on electrical equipment or curtain inside the house. Occasionally the behaviour that is objectionable is something that the cat has been taught by the owner, albeit unintentionally. An example of this would be the kitten that is encouraged to play roughly with the owner’s hand. However, because it is seen as fun and while the kitten is small it is not too painful, no attempt is made to interrupt the game when the biting becomes too intense and therefore the kitten grows into a cat that doesn’t know how to inhibit behaviour during play. This cat may even end up being labelled as ‘aggressive’. These cats are the most likely to be abandoned and those most difficult to be adopted, so please think if you have or are about to take on a kitten, the best option is to either have another cat or adopt 2 kittens, so that they have cat to cat interaction, it’s also so much more entertaining to watch their antics!

Until next time... If you would like more information please contact Lynn Stone at The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Lemon & Rosemary Cupcakes with white chocolate buttercream roses

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local

Lemon & Rosemary Cupcakes


with white chocolate buttercream roses

Ingredients (Makes 12 large cupcakes): For the cupcakes:

For the buttercream:

• 240g butter at room temperature • 240g light brown sugar • 240g self-raising flour • 4 eggs • 1 small sprig of rosemary, stalk removed and leaves finely chopped • Zest of 2 lemons

• 125g butter at room temperature • 250g icing sugar • 50g white chocolate • 2 tbsp milk • Food colouring You will need: • A 12-hole muffin tray with paper muffin/cupcake cases • A Wilton 1M piping nozzle (or similar)

Method For the lemon and rosemary cupcakes: Preheat the oven to 180°C /360°F. Add all the cupcake ingredients into a free-standing mixer or large bowl: the butter, sugar, eggs, self-raising flour (sifted), lemon zest and rosemary. Beat until smooth, being careful not to over mix. Place the mixture into the paper cases until two thirds-full. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until they spring back when touched. Leave to cool, transferring to a wire rack when cool enough to handle.

White chocolate buttercream: Place the white chocolate and milk in a microwaveable bowl and heat on medium for 15 seconds at a time until the chocolate is melted. Be careful not to overheat! Stir well so you have a smooth runny mixture then leave to cool. Place the butter in a free-standing mixer and beat for a minute or two until pale in colour. Add half the icing sugar and beat for a further minute. Add the remaining icing sugar and beat again until smooth. Slowly pour in the white chocolate mixture and mix until all incorporated and silky smooth. Finally add in the food colouring until you have the desired colour.

To decorate: Take the cooled cupcakes and level off the tops if necessary by cutting with a bread knife. Put the buttercream in a piping bag with the piping nozzle. Starting from the middle, pipe a swirl of buttercream round until you reach the outer edge of the cupcake. Repeat for all 12 cupcakes.

Want to see how to pipe the roses? Check out photos and a video on our Instagram account Le Caillau: Nestled in the heart of the Cahors vineyards you’ll find Le Caillau, 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: Restaurant: Monday: Lunch ~ Tuesday: Closed ~ Wednesday - Saturday: Lunch & dinner ~ Sunday: Lunch Lunch is served between 12pm - 2.30pm and dinner from 7pm Pottery painting café: Mon, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat: 10am – 5pm ~ Sunday: 12pm – 4pm ~ Tuesday: Closed Le Caillau, 46700 Vire sur Lot. Telephone: 05 65 23 78 04 Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Property Management, Caretaking & Holiday Lettings around Montcuq Marianne Charpentier Part French, 16 years experience with owners, artisans & tenants.

06 71 71 77 22

Curry en France Private curry parties or a monthly curry evening in Montcuq at ‘Le Tower Hill’ bar

Catering for birthdays, special occasions or our special service for gîte owners – offer this catered service to your guests. Minimum number of people for catered meals – 10. Please follow our Facebook page for more information and for updates and confirmation of the dates for our monthly Montcuq ‘curry-evening’. Email: for enquiries or bookings or call 0621324775 curryenfrance

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Your copy of The Quercy Local can be delivered to your home in France or anywhere in the world. If you would like to get the next 5 copies of the magazine delivered directly to your home in France or another address anywhere in the world 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 – 26 euro for an address in France or 18 euro for elsewhere in the world. The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Kingfisher Holidays

Kingfisher Holidays specialise in letting attractive quality properties, all with swimming pools. With over 30 years of experience in the holiday letting market we offer local knowledge and a personal relationship, appreciated by our clients, many of whom return to Kingfisher year after year. If you are interested in letting your property and looking for a high level of professional and personnel service then please contact us at

Nursery for the complete garden plant package Trees - Shrubs - Conifers - Perennials - Grasses Climbers - Bulbs - Bedding Plants - Exotic Plants

NEW opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday 8:30h-12.30h and 14:00-18:00h In the months March, April and May, the nursery is also open on Sunday from 9:00h-12:30h and 14:00h-17:00h! Pépinière La Vida Verda SARL, Guillotes, 82110 Lauzerte 06 88 87 34 08 La Vida Verda Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018

Microgreens & Me


Nikki Stedham, lives on a canal barge in France and grows Microgreens. Here she tells us about Microgreens and just how all this came about.


ick and I were both disenchanted with life in the UK and struggling to keep up with it all. We were working in jobs with live-to-work regimes, high living-costs and impossible traffic jams. We were basically paying the price for living in a beautiful part of Dorset. We’d re-modelled and updated our 1930s house which had taken longer than anticipated. Then, having achieved our dream home, we realised we didn’t want to live in an area that had changed so much. Having both spent time in France, we felt it was somewhere we’d love to explore. So, for several years we visited different areas, looking at properties with the idea of becoming more self-sufficient. We were undecided on a location and unsure of ploughing everything into another property. Buying a barge or an old lock house had been a long-time dream for Nick and the idea of exploring France on the water living a simpler, nomadic-life certainly appealed to me. So, in November 2015 our barge ‘Festina Lente’ became out new home on the Canal du Midi.

Why we should all love Microgreens These plants offer a chance to literally return to our roots. To grow our food and know its provenance. Whilst reducing the global transportation of fresh food that’s been treated with chemicals or radiation to increase its shelf life. The problems of space are overcome as microgreens can be grown on a windowsill within two weeks with the minimum of equipment. Providing a pathway to nutritional independence at a reasonable cost. Growing your own microgreens is truly within your reach, exciting and enjoyable to share. In the Spring of 2016 we travelled along the Midi and through Toulouse onto the Canal du Lateral. We loved the freedom of wild-mooring, exploring new places and meeting interesting people. We were not retired and found that France had become terribly expensive! We always knew that we would need to

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find a way to supplement our income, so our cruising turned into a search for a base to start a business near to the canal. I’d had some gardening experience. It had started in my teens working with my mother who grew and sold organic produce to sell locally. She’d started gardening as a child with her mother. A necessity to produce food for a large family during the war. My mother was appalled that most produce was intensively cultivated and with the use of chemicals; resulting in vegetables with no flavour or nutrients. She was always keen to push boundaries and experiment growing unusual and lesser known varieties of vegetables; often achieving fantastic results. This sparked my interest! However, producing vegetables was not going to be easy whilst living on a boat! So, it was a desire to be more self-sufficient within the constraints of a small space that led me to microgreens. I’d seen these irresistible little shoots being used by chefs and was intrigued by them. I researched and found that they had made their debut in San Francisco in the 80s. They have since gained in popularity as demand grew from creative chefs in Australia, Canada and more recently the UK and Europe. As I discovered more about microgreens I became hooked and couldn’t wait to get growing! I really loved the idea that you could grow delicious healthy, vitaminpacked crops within a week or two in a small space. I practised cultivating them during our travels which did not always impress Nick as he tried to navigate the barge with trays of tender growing shoots right under his nose! I’d discovered, after moving the crops around for the light, that the best spot was in the wheelhouse just above the wheel! So, as my growing trays multiplied I was encouraged to de-camp to a mini greenhouse on the aft deck which led us to setting up a small business. ViVert Microgreens is now based at an ecluse (lock house) on the Montech Canal, near to Montauban. The microgreens are grown in a polytunnel, naturally in organic soil or coco coir and without the use of chemicals. We supply local restaurants and

Nutritional Properties of Microgreens Research by The University of Maryland has highlighted the nutritional benefits of these incredible edibles elevating them beyond their role as chefs‘ garnish! They found: A high nutritional content of 3 - 39.4 x the nutritional content of their mature counterpart. They are rich in enzymes which enable them to become more easily digested. Red Cabbage Microgreens have 40 x the vitamin E and 6 x the vitamin C of the mature plant. They are rich in antioxidants, which are the substances that neutralise harmful, free radicals. Microgreens that also have very high concentrations of vitamins were Amaranth, Coriander and Green Daikon Radish. They are best eaten directly after harvesting, when the nutritional boost is highest. are now distributing our microgreens, via local, freshproduce outlets.

What is a Microgreen? A Microgreen is a tender tiny edible vegetable or herb seedling grown to the cotyledon stage – when the first two true leaves develop. They are a step on from mustard and cress growing and extend to a multitude

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Growing Pitfalls Growing in a poly tunnel the weather can cause problems. Usually it’s too much humidity with wet weather or the intense heat stifling growth or a combination of both causing rot. Not forgetting that high winds and heavy rain can cause havoc with a poly tunnel.

What Nikki loves about growing Microgreens

of seed varieties. They provide extensive taste and nutrition. They are recognised as a specialist crop due to the specific conditions required to grow some of the varieties and the substantial number of seeds required. • Microgreens are packed with carotenoids and contain high levels of vitamins C, K and E. • Microgreens are living enzymes containing phytonutrients, delivering great nutrition. • Microgreens have surprisingly intense flavours, vivid colouring and a crisp texture. • These tender baby greens are Biogenic – meaning Life Generating.

The difference between Sprouted Shoots and Microgreens: Many people assume that microgreens are the same as sprouted shoots, which are also very nutritious. However, these shoots have received some bad-press following several poisonings. This has generally been specific to commercially produced sprouts using poor hygiene or storage practice. Microgreens are grown in organic soil or hydroponically requiring critical growing conditions to prevent mould before being harvested by cutting off at the base of the stem. Only the leaves & stem are eaten. Sprouted seeds are grown in humid conditions providing ideal conditions for bacteria to thrive and require stringent rinsing and draining to prevent contamination. The shoot and seed are eaten. It’s advisable to cook sprouts before consumption.

Growing Tips for Microgreens • Microgreens need soil and natural light to increase their phytonutrient qualities. • When grown in natural sunlight the nutritional content will be maximised. • They grow best when bottom watered with slightly acidic water at a PH level of 6.0 – 6.5

• The fascinating process of seeding trays and then watching the seeds gaining little roots, changing colour and showing their first little green leaves. Easy to see when many of the microgreens are not grown in soil. • Introducing Microgreens to people walking along the towpath who show interest and who are then surprised and amazed by them • A constant, delicious nutritious supply of greens grown without the use of any chemicals all year round, perfect for adding to any meal, salad, nibbling on or for health smoothies. Finally, there’s a real joy in growing and eating your own food. You can experiment with endless vegetable and herb varieties and discover preferences for different crops. It’s a fascinating, frustrating and obsessive occupation. I am continually learning the more I grow! Nikki Stedman; We hope to return later in the year to find out about Nikki’s Canal Boat and Lock House.

Want to learn more? The internet is a fantastic source of information from many growers around the globe Some interesting sites: * *by Isabell Shipard in Australia who wrote: “Tender baby greens are biogenic food at its best. Biogenic – meaning life generating food by the capacity of their life-force to generate life force for us” Books – “Microgreens – A guide to growing nutrient packed greens” by Eric Franks & Jasmine Richardson

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Ironwood Motif Artist Blacksmith, Ferronnerie d’Art

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018

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

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Depuis 1986.... Since 1986 thousands of Guests have booked holidays in Quercy Self Catering houses and gites through Halcyon Leisure. Offering a very personal approach to Owners and Guests alike, Halcyon Leisure now offer full pricing in ЄEUR and credit card payment facilities for Guests. With 60% of bookings being from returning Guests, Advantages include better payment terms to Owners than Can we take the burden of marketing and most online operators and a higher Guest administration for your holiday home? degree of personal interaction. Please contact us for a no obligation discussion

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Specialist pension Specialist pension solutions for UK solutions for UK expatriates in France. expatriates in France. Blevins Franks specialises in cross-border wealth and can provide Blevinsmanagement Franks specialises in cross-border personalised, UK regulated pension wealth management and can provide advice, including you are personalised, UK QROPS. regulated If pension thinking of transferring your pension advice, including QROPS. If you are out of the UK, may wishyour to take action thinking of you transferring pension out now in case the UK extends its 25% of the UK, you may wish to take action Overseas Transfer Charge post now in case the UK extends itsBrexit. 25% We can help you with all your Overseas Transfer Charge post pension Brexit. options, including the all taxyour implications We can help you with pension in France. options, including the tax implications

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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, registered number 07 027 475, and authorised as “Conseil en Investissements Financiers” andby “Courtiers d’Assurance” Category (register can beManagement consulted onLimited of ANACOFI-CIF. office: Blevins Franks Group is represented in France the following companies: BlevinsBFranks Financial (BFFM)Member and Blevins Franks FranceBFF’s SASUregistered (BFF). BFFM is Parc Innolin,and 3 Rue du Golf,byCS 33701 Mérignac – RCSin BXthe 498 800 465 APEnumber 6622Z. Garantie Financière et Assurance deoverseas, Responsabilité Professionnelle aux authorised regulated the60073, Financial Conduct Authority UK, reference 179731. Where advice is provided via theCivile Insurance Mediationconformes Directive from articles L 541-3 du Code Monétaire etsome Financier and L512-6 and duBlevins Code des Assurances (assureur Malta, the regulatory system differs in respects from that of 512-7 the UK. Franks France SASU (BFF),MMA). is registered with ORIAS, registered number 07 027 475, and authorised as “Conseil en Investissements Financiers” and “Courtiers d’Assurance” Category B (register can be consulted on Member of ANACOFI-CIF. BFF’s registered office: Parc Innolin, 3 Rue du Golf, CS 60073, 33701 Mérignac – RCS BX 498 800 465 APE 6622Z. Garantie Financière et Assurance de Responsabilité Civile Professionnelle conformes aux articles L 541-3 du Code Monétaire et Financier and L512-6 and 512-7 du Code des Assurances (assureur MMA).

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WHAT CAN EXPATRIATES IN FRANCE DO WITH THEIR UK PENSION IN 2018? By Colin Leigh-Higgott, Blevins Franks When it comes to pensions, your long-term financial security is at stake, so take care to do what is right for you and your family. Expatriates also need to consider the tax rules and implications in France. Start by understanding the options available for different pension types.

Whatever type of pension you have, consider certain issues before making any decisions.

‘Defined contribution’ or ‘money purchase’ pensions These pensions are made up of what you have paid into the scheme alongside employer contributions, tax rebates and investment growth. Examples include individual or group personal and employer pensions and Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs). Since the pension freedoms of 2015, members of these schemes can usually do the following from age 55: • Take the whole fund as cash – 25% (the ‘Pension Commencement Lump Sum’ – PCLS) will be tax-free in the UK. • Make cash withdrawals when you want – unless you have already taken the PCLS, a quarter is free of UK tax each time. • Take regular income through ‘flexible drawdown’, leaving the remainder invested. • Take a secure, regular income for life through buying an annuity. Expatriates also have the option to transfer UK pension funds to a Qualifying Recognised Overseas Pension Scheme (QROPS). QROPS benefits include flexibility to pass pension benefits to chosen heirs and to take income in Euros instead of Sterling. Once in a QROPS, funds are protected from lifetime pension allowance penalties and future UK taxation. However, QROPS benefits and rules can vary between providers and jurisdictions, and a 25% UK tax charge applies on transfers to QROPS outside the European Economic Area (EEA) or Gibraltar. As transferred funds remain liable for five UK tax years, you risk being penalised if you become tax resident in a non-EEA jurisdiction within that period. It is important to take professional advice to first establish if transferring is suitable for you and then navigate the complex options.

Taxation While a quarter of a defined contribution scheme can be taken tax-free in the UK, French residents are liable to French taxation at the income tax scale rates up to 45%. Only withdrawals prompted by an ‘accident of life’, like invalidity, unemployment or death of a spouse, are exempt. It may be possible to limit French tax on a UK lump sum to just 7.5% - with an uncapped 10% allowance – in certain circumstances. Generally, you must take the whole fund at once, so you may be ineligible for this rate if you have already started taking benefits. All pension income also attracts annual social charges of 9.1% (7.4% previously), unless you hold EU Form S1 or do not have access to the French healthcare system. Making your money last Having the freedom to withdraw or transfer your pension does not mean that you should. You may even be better off taking no action at this time. If you choose to take some or all of your benefits as cash, make sure you have a plan to fund your long-term future that suits your personal circumstances and goals.

The threat of losing it all Pension scams have never been more widespread and sophisticated – Age UK estimates £43 million has been lost to scammers since April 2014. Generally, if an investment sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Once you transfer your pension, it is too late. Also, beware that many companies offering pension services are unregulated. Whether they aim to defraud you or not, unprotected investments risk losing your money, with no recourse if things go wrong. Even amongst regulated providers, check for quality. The UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) found that less than half of those cashing in final salary pensions received ‘Defined benefit’ or ‘final salary’ pensions suitable advice. Make sure your adviser takes account of Here, your employer guarantees a proportion of your your needs, objectives, personal circumstances and risk appetite to find a tailor-made solution for you and your salary for the whole of retirement. As benefits last a life in France. lifetime and are often generous, these are viewed as ‘gold-plated’ pensions. Getting it wrong could have serious and unexpected consequences. Take the time you need to do your While you cannot usually withdraw cash from these research and establish your best approach for a pensions, you can transfer it to a defined contribution scheme or a QROPS. Traditionally, this has been considered prosperous retirement. less attractive than drawing a guaranteed pension for life. The tax rates, scope and reliefs may change. Any statements However, today, some struggling providers are tempting concerning taxation are based upon our understanding of members to cash-in with ‘transfer values’ of up to 40 times current taxation laws and practices which are subject to change. the annual benefits due at retirement. Although a one-off Tax information has been summarised; an individual is advised sum could potentially provide a retirement income that to seek personalised advice. exceeds the original annual payment, it is crucial to Keep up to date on the financial issues that fully understand the consequences before giving up may affect you on the Blevins Franks news ‘gold-plated’ benefits. page at Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


The Quercy Local • March-April 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


LAS RAZES Your perfect large gîte

Loren and Pierre look forward to welcoming you to their lovely restaurant in the heart of Puy L’Évêque, deep in the Lot valley. Where you will find both local and refined dishes all accompanied by a large range of great wines.

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 lasrazes lasrazes Las Razes, Touffailles (82190) Tarn et Garonne

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


The Pilgrim’s Choice


an’s relationship to cheese predates recorded history. Few products can match it in terms of protein and fat storage, ease of transport or longevity. The first written records of the production of cheese date back to Poland 5500 years ago and archaeologists have found samples of it Egyptian tombs that date to approximately 2000 BC. With the exception of some Southeast Asian countries, which had no history of dairy production, virtually every society on earth has developed cheese making techniques to prolong the life of milk. In a way that is very characteristic of the French, they chose to move beyond merely turning milk into

cheese in order to preserve it, and instead turned it into an art form; one that for many of us was a major draw card when deciding to move to this country. Here cheese is revered almost as much as wine and real connoisseurs can be just as snobby. That said, cheese is also something that touches the day to day lives of the common man. On average, the French consume 25 kilograms of cheese per person per annum and it is eaten regularly by 96 percent of the population. Cheese is more than just an edible commodity though. In France, where there are estimated to be between three and four hundred different cheeses, each one tells a tale of the local culture, livestock production and geography of the region. Cabacou is no exception. Cabacou is a small round cheese that is produced from goats’ milk. Under its AOC name of Rocamadour, it has won international recognition and it is hard to find a menu in the south west of France that does not offer it. Like many French cheeses it has its roots in the history of the area. At one time, pilgrimage from various points in Europe to Santiago in northern Spain was widely practised. Between the 11th and 16th century, in what is often referred to as the golden age of pilgrimage, it is estimated that at any one time twenty percent of the population were either on pilgrimage or engaged in supplying services to pilgrims. One of the most sacred sites to visit along the way was the ancient monastery of Rocamadour.

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REMOVALS TO & FROM FRANCE Successful moves to and from France for over 30 years

Rocamadour lies on the Causse where a limestone ridge rises to just below soil level. The thin layer of soil that does exist is not conducive to the production of crops or large livestock, but it lends itself perfectly to goat breeding. The small, round, cabacou cheeses provided the perfect product to sell to hungry pilgrims and so another cheese made its way into French culture. In the late 16th century, the Black Plague, religious wars and wide spread famine contributed to a near total demise of the grand pilgrimage. Along the former pilgrim routes, many people who had plied their various trades to the steady flow of travellers passing through were forced to seek other markets. The string of ruined mills along the banks of the l’Alzou River, running past Rocamadour, offers testament to the changes that must have taken place during this period. It was a time of great upheaval in France but cabacou had established itself as part of the regional culture. In 1996 cabacou received AOC status. Fittingly, this came under the name Rocamdour which had proven to be such a magnet to those early pilgrims. Today it is not so much pilgrims that are attracted to the cobbled streets of the famous village, but tourists. The small, round, goats’ cheese continues to provide a solid business for many of the local farmers. Interestingly, pilgrimage has seen a massive revival in recent years and the number of pilgrims passing through Rocamdour has quadrupled since the 1980’s, no doubt adding further demand for this cheese that now bears its name. By Mike Alexander

CONTACT US Tel: 01622 690653 or 01622 695374 Email: Unit 15, Heronden Rd, Bircholt Rd, Parkwood, Maidstone, Kent ME15 9YR

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Emergency numbers Medical Help/SAMU 15 Text Service for Hard of Hearing 114 Police/Police Nationale (Gendarmerie) 17 Fire & Accident/Sapeurs Pompiers


SOS – All Services (calling from a mobile) 112 Child in Danger (child protection) 119 Missing Child

116 000

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Art contemporain

Saison 2018

Annick CAMMARATA - Jacques MOIROUD - Marc GRANIER - Pierre ASSÉMAT - Delphine ALLIENS Joël BARDEAU - Fanny PALLARO Hazel THAÏS - Vincent TURBET Lorena ACIN - Arnaud ELISABETH Charlotte INCE - Nadine VERGUES Anne PATAY - Jean Noël CRÉPIN Tatiana ROZENBLAT - Magdalena KOPACZ - Sébastien CRÊTEUR Alice COURVOISIER - Anne LEBRETON-LAUNES - Evelyne MAUBERT - Jess WALLACE - BLOUET ClaudetteBRIAND-Geneviève GOURVIL - Marie-Jo DILLY

Espace Points de Vue LAUZERTE Tarn & Garonne (82)

AFFICHES-general.indd 1

09/03/2018 14:22:28



Today many online businesses offer invaluable niche services to expats. Pet sitting is one such service. But which network is safe? Joining a membership network like ours, for a small annual fee, helps you meet suitable and checked pet and house sitters securely online and arrange for them to care for your pets in your own home. Are you, like many pet owners, shocked at the end of a holiday to find that pet care costs have significantly increased the cost of your trip? Worse still, you might be tired of repeatedly asking neighbours to mind the pets for a few days, so instead you decide to stay at home again? Today, there’s an alternative. A growing trend that is part of ‘the Sharing Economy’ a collaboration with others for mutual benefit. Even if your pets are cared for in your own home you usually pay for the time and attention the sitter gives your fur family while you are away from home and if you are away for two or three weeks it can add up. But not with the pet care and home care is for free. You pay for the membership that covers ID checking for everyone and the management of the online systems that keep things secure.

I was a little apprehensive at first about using an online service to try and find a suitable house sitter to look after my house and cat but as soon as I registered I was contacted by Lamia, the business owner, who provided me with excellent support and help in getting my profile set up and my house sit vacancy logged. Lamia took a real interest in making sure I found the right sitters so whilst it may be an online service, the attention to detail and the personal help and service I have received has been exceptional and I would have no hesitation recommending HouseSit Match and Lamia to others. ~ Mike Condron ~ Home & Pet owner, Limousin (Reviews on Trustpilot)

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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...

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ARBRESERVICES Matt Strawbridge Tree Surgeon Elagueur Arboriste

Tours 47340 Cassignas 05 53 95 80 27/ 06 45 25 65 58 SIRET NO. 5025222200004

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Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018

Two Towns


A Tale of

In this edition we visit the two equally ancient towns of Caylus and Penne d’Agenais. Firstly, Caylus...


aylus (82160) is steeped in history; it’s a jewel for historians and lovers of all things ancient. The town’s importance grew in the Middle-Ages when it developed jurisdiction over many local areas. Its freedoms and powers were granted in 1251 by Alphonse II, Count of Poitiers and Toulouse. Caylus has survived both fires and massacres. Much of its dramas arose from the conflicts brought by the Albigensian (Cathar) Crusades and of course, the Hundred Years’ War. The later highlighting a hostile rivalry between Caylus, Catholic to the core, and the neighbouring town of Saint Antonin Noble Val which was passionately Calvinist. These hostilities included a period in 1622 when Sant-Antonin was besieged, and Louis Xlll decided to manage the crisis by basing himself in Caylus, his residence remains today. Caylus is built (not surprisingly) at the top of a hill. It’s surrounded on three sides by the steep, wooded-slopes The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Agence Immobilière Caylus Estate Agency Caylus

4, Place de la Bascule - 82160 CAYLUS 0033 (0)5 63 64 92 73 -

of the limestone plateau. It sits on the river Bonnette, a tributary to the river Aveyron. The town centre has quirky, stone houses that line narrow, cobbled-alleyways. Look out for the Rue Droite and Rue Dulong which are lined with half-timbered houses and then at the centre of the town there’s the Place du Marche with its impressive Halle (covered market) and its unusual stone pillars. It’s worth seeking out the 14th century, fortified, church of St-Jean Baptiste with its octagonal steeple and a stone spire. Inside you will find an unusual carving of Christ done by renowned sculptor Zadrine.

Then there’s the Maison des Loups – an old stone building with an impressive facade with four wolf-shaped gargoyles and decorative arches. Just outside the town at Saint Pierre de Livron you can find a quite a petrifying waterfall (objects left in the water develop a stone-like appearance). At wetter times of the year this becomes a raging force. On the edge of the town is the Lac de Labarthe an ideal spot to visit in the warmer months with plenty of space for parking and for picnics; it’s ideal for families. Caylus is busy during the summer months and quietens during the winter. However, any periods of apparent tranquillity should not be mis-understood. The resident community is active all year long, there’s always something going on! Tourist Office:

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Caylus and its dedicated Business Association by Jacqueline Hurley


aylus is a little bit like a scratch card – you never really know what lies underneath until the reveal. Visitors new to Caylus come primarily to see the ancient medieval buildings as they step back to a time of dragons, legends and Templar Knights. You could be mistaken for thinking that there doesn’t really seem a lot going on, but underneath lies a village where its people are passionate about keeping ancestral skills and traditions alive. This passion is honoured in quite a unique way and can be seen in the work of the local business association, L’Atelier de Caylus, (www.latelier-caylus. com).which not only represents the economic interests of businesses, trades and artisans across Caylus and its communes but also serves to showcase the deep heritage of Caylus by organising and staging a series of increasingly popular annual events. Its current President, M. Olivier Gentilin and his dynamic team, have been at the forefront of creating a unique identity for Caylus by reviving the tradition of a summer Medieval Fayre. For one day in early July, brightly dressed in its medieval summer garb, Caylus welcomes over 8,000 visitors and transports them back to a time of its ancestral ways. The event combines theatre, handicraft shows, jousting and archery tournaments with a lively market of food sellers and artisans, all dressed in medieval garb. Don’t be surprised if you see the hooded Executioner accompanied by the local Friar marching some medieval criminals off to the stocks! The market is the biggest historical event in the locality and this year is set to be bigger than ever. On 7th July 2018 from 9am, the market will lead you through ancient alleyways up towards the Château creating a loop back down towards the Church, whose stained-glass windows, dappling the statue of Christ by Zadkine in coloured light, are the best of any found in the region. Stop for a while to see craftsmen and women use the old techniques to make soap, ceramics, jewellery and more and spend a sou or two on these products

that are guaranteed to delight any lover of authentic crafts. Watch a real blacksmith working with his forge; marvel at the art of the Falconer, try your hand at archery, take a turn in the stocks and be amazed at the jousting mastery of medieval warriors. The kids will be entranced with tales of dragons, knights and legends and will have difficulty choosing from amongst the many child friendly activities on offer, many of which are free. As the sun dips towards the horizon, make sure you’ve reserved your place at the medieval banquet served under the ancient roof of the Halle, beautifully decorated in wild flowers, located at the heart of the village square. Be enticed into trying some medieval dances before night fall when the village square is transformed into a specular theatre of fire. As summer draws to a close, the village gears up to receive 40 famous ceramicists from all over France for the Marché des Potiers. Year on year, this ever popular event has always exceed expectations, so much so that, in 2018, Caylus is set to welcome more than 10,000 visitors for the 2 day event starting on Wednesday 15th August. December sees Caylus transformed once again back to medieval times as the village square hosts its Christmas market. Whilst considered the ‘baby’ of Caylus’s medieval fayres as it was only born in 2017, it attracted crowds from far and wide looking for an authentic shopping experience with a medieval ambiance. Music plays a key role in Caylus as the seasons change. From the Fêtes des Voisins in May, Fête de la Musique in June and other ad-hoc gigs throughout spring and summer by local bands such as e.Go! Lift the veil and you’ll be welcomed into the heart of a community that is passionate about preserving, showcasing and sharing its heritage. Little wonder then that the makers of that esteemed game Monopoly recently launched a Tarn et Garonne version and Caylus features on the board in the yellow zone!

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


From Russia With Love Ossip Zadkine (18901967) was a sculptor born in what is today, Belarus. He was educated in London and studied in Paris and was part of the cubist movement. He later developed a style influenced by Greek and African art.

Le Jardin des Espiemonts is a small, specialist plant nursery located on the plateau above Caylus, next to the military camp. We are open on Mondays, 10 - 4, or other times, by appointment. John and I established our family-run business when we moved to France five years ago. Prior to that we wholesaled in the UK, selling alpines and perennials to garden centres nationwide. When we moved to France we discontinued any plants that wouldn’t do well in this climate and instead focussed on drought-resistant plants that can survive our hot dry summers, but which are also hardy enough to withstand the harsh, cold winters. Whereas we used to grow hundreds of each variety in the UK, concentrating on standard, popular varieties, we now grow in smaller numbers (typically a dozen of each variety) but have a much wider range. As well as including all the usual, wellknown varieties, we enjoy growing rarer varieties that aren’t easily found elsewhere. Our nursery space is compact, but with our scaled-down production, we are able to pack in over 700 varieties of plants, ranging in size from 9 cm to 5 litre.

Zadkine took French nationality and when he became enamoured with Caylus he bought a house and stayed a while. During this time, he sculpted the very original Crucified Christ (notably with no cross) which remains in the town’s church of St-Jean Baptiste. Zadkine only sculpted from wood that had died or fallen which gives a very distinct style to his work. He later moved to Les Arques in the Lot, where there’s a Musée Zadkine in his memory. There’s also a Musée Zadkine in Paris in what was his former home, close to the Jardin du Luxembourg. Zadkine died in Paris and is buried at Montparnasse Cemetery.

As well as developing our plant collection, we also enjoy running various events, such as talks, workshops and plant swaps. We attend spring and autumn plant fairs throughout the area, and we also write the gardening column for the Quercy Local.

John and Debbie (Le Jardin des Espiemonts) 06 44 23 73 65 lejardindesespiemonts Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Caylus’ very own Old Spots! Nowt like Free Range Pork!


hen we moved our young family from Wales to Southwest France to ‘live the dream life’ in 2005 I can assure you that pig-farming was never on our bucket-list of things to do! However, 13 years later having found our dream home at Ferme Basqui, Caylus I find myself rearing free range pigs.....and absolutely loving it!! Ferme Basqui is situated on the Causses de Quercy just a few kilometres from Caylus, a typical old French farmhouse in need of a lot of restoration surrounded by 25 ha of wild oak-forest and prairie land. Anyway...pigs... why pigs? To begin with we’ve no background or past experiences with farming, although I did breed guinea pigs as a child! Our first experience with pigs was in 2009, when we fostered an orphaned Vietnamese potbellied pig called Maria. Much to our children’s delight, Maria had to be bottle-fed for a few weeks and believe it or not she lived in the house with us. Yes, we actually had a pig living in our home! Our dogs became her surrogate mother and she soon became dog-like, lying on the rug in front of the fire, coming out on walks and enjoying nothing more than a good belly scratch. She became part of our family. In 2012 we bought Ferme Basqui and it wasn’t long before I knew I wanted pigs roaming and snuffling around our oak forests.

After much reading and research, I decided that the traditional, docile pig-breed the ‘Gloucester Old Spot’ would be well-suited to our farm. Known as the ‘orchard pig’ or the ‘cottager’s pig’ the Old Spot is well suited to living outdoors. It’s also regarded as an excellent and thrifty forager, as well as being renowned for its quality meat. Soon enough Samson and Charlotte, our first breeders, had piglets and before long we had a family of pigs rooting and grunting about in the forest. My respect and passion for these intelligent animals grew, I loved working and being around them. In 2015 I finally plucked up the courage and signed myself up at the Chambre d’Agriculture as a pig farmer, rearing and producing free-range pork.

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The last 3 years have been a mixture of ups and downs with swings as well as roundabouts. There’s been endless paperwork and I’ve had to learn, and I am still learning, a lot about pigs! My pigs live outdoors all year round, they have shelters and straw for weather protection, with the sows only brought into the pigsty if the weather is really bad. The piglets stay with their mothers until they are weaned at 8-10 weeks of age. Pigs are social creatures and here on our farm they live in groups together, we do not castrate or dock tails, and only administer medication if it is really needed. I pride myself that, during their time here, my pigs can exhibit their natural behaviour as much as possible. It isn’t unusual, if you turn up at the farm, to see piglets roaming around...escapees! I have numerous pig stories under my belt from the last few years and having 5 children has been a bonus when it comes to chasing and catching pigs! Pigs are great foragers and if not controlled properly can quickly damage the land, I am constantly erecting new parks to move them around and preserve our forest and fields. They are great rotavators if you need a patch of land clearing!

3 years on and the pig farm has grown to 2 boars, 10 sows and many, many piglets, 90 pigs at the moment! The feedback for my pork-product has been very positive, and I am known to the local British as The Pig Lady, Sausage Lady or The Sausage Fairy. The feedback from the French has also been encouraging, they love the bacon, enjoy trying out the assortment of sausages and are intrigued to hear about the ‘foreign’ breed of pig I am rearing. My pork products are sold vente direct from the farm, or you can find me on the Sunday market at Saint Antonin Noble Val and from this spring on the Saturday market in Caylus. We prepare pork on a weekly/fortnightly basis and have all the usual cuts of pork you would find at a butcher’s shop, pork chops, with the skin and fat intact, échine chops, filet mignon, carbonade, escalopes, bacon, and various roasts. We also make British style sausages, Lincolnshire, pork n’ apple, pork n’ leek to name a few. This autumn, due to popular demand, I’ll be making gammon and hams. If quality free range pork is for you, and you would like to be added to my contact list to hear about my products then please email me at Or, you can find me on Facebook, Naomi Westbury. I would love to hear from past and present pig breeders to exchange advice and ideas, or maybe you’ve considered purchasing a couple of weaners to rear yourselves, any questions please don’t hesitate to get in touch or come and say ‘hello’ at the local markets. Although these animals can be stubborn at times, pigs are full of character and are great fun to watch. They are truly intelligent, beautiful creatures and deserve so much more respect than they are given. Thirteen years on from our move and I can honestly say, I’m as happy as a pig in ***t! By Naomi, a very passionate pig farmer

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Caylus – a bee’s paradise Caylus has been awarded a ‘2 Bee’ API Cité award. A national award given by The Union Nationale de l’Apiculture Française to towns that excel at caring for bees and other wild pollinators. The 5 criteria for winning this award are: Sustainable development (energy & water resource) Land management (without phytosanitary products) l Biodiversity l Good local beekeeping l Education (public, beekeepers and children) l l

A word with a local beekeeper Gaelle Matura teaches beekeeping at the Maison du Patrimoine in Caylus. She also has her own hives in Montlauzun (46). We asked her a little about her experience. How did you get started with bees? I knew 2 amateur beekeepers who started the ‘Training Hives’ in Caylus. So, I followed them for a year learning all about these highly organised insects. I was fascinated and decided to get my own hives. I got my first swarm from a neighbour and my second just ‘turned up’ in a spare hive I’d placed in my mum’s orchard. How much work is involved? When you’re so passionate about something it’s hard to calculate the time. It’s difficult to work out what’s work and what’s not! However, my workload is now reduced as I’ve gone from 7 hives to only 1. The Varroa mite has killed most of my bees. I hope to be back to 3 hives later this year. What do your hives produce? Sadly, my bees are surrounded by drier, poorer land and so they miss an abundance of flowers. This means my honey yield is relatively low. We usually collect 15 kg of honey per hive, per year. But it’s not only honey that we harvest! There’s also bees’ wax. But we must leave sufficient stocks in the hive for the bees to use for maintenance. We also collect pollen by placing a grate at the entrance to the hive which catches the pollen from the bees’ legs.

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How do you know where to place your hives? This is difficult in a region where the summer heat dries up the flowers; as the bees must find sufficient food. In exceptionally dry weather we must give the bees a supply of sugar-syrup. So, the best location for hives is one that is close to a good supply of melliferous flowers. What do you do with bees during winter? It’s important to check the hives before winter to monitor the size and health of the colony. The hive itself must be in good condition and insulated. We also provide food to help the bees in wintry conditions.

If you want to learn more about bees? Training to become a professional or amateur beekeeper has become increasingly popular over recent years. An increasing interest in biodiversity and a desire to produce home-grown foods are incentivising this growth. In Caylus the Maison du Patrimoine arranges lessons (January - October) teaching all about keeping bees; colonies, predators, hives and equipment. As well as flower species, weather conditions, collecting and storing honey, pollen, and how to use wax to secure the hive. These courses involve ‘hands on’ experience as well as theory and of form the basis of a great support network with like-minded people

The bees also stick propolis on what they see as an ‘unwanted grill’ that we place in the hive, enabling us to collect this. Then, there’s the royal jelly. However, remember that collecting the royal jelly for human-use means risking the life of the queen bee. How do you make a single flower honey? You add an extra frame to the hive before a particular flower crop flowers (such as acacia) this means that the honey from this extra frame will be from this specific flower.

Around Caylus, the landscape of the ‘causses’ is quite unchanging. There are no large fields of crops or fruit. This reduces the danger of pesticide or other harmful practises to threaten the environment for the Maison du Patrimoine’s 8 ‘teaching’ hives. CPIE Quercy-Garonne, Association Al Païs de Boneta, Maison du Patrimoine, Labarthe, 82160 Caylus Tél : 05 63 24 06 26 photo credit: You can also read more about the value of bees on p.74

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Caylus Notre Village and the

Restoration of the Lavoir By Madame Anne-Marie Thévenet, President of the Association Caylus lavoir in use as a market hall


Caylus lavoir before restoration

aylus Notre Village is an association whose main aim is to heighten public awareness of the restoration of Caylus’ municipal lavoir (wash house). The association was established on 17th April 2008. After a period of inactivity between 2011 and 2014, Caylus Notre Village underwent an enthusiastic revival. This has resulted in various projects, including: the organisation of guided walks on Pentecost Monday, during the village’s traditional fete; the revival of a summer car rally, which had been dormant for several years, with an annual theme and a quiz encouraging participants to discover the region; and the renewal of an auberge espagnole (bring and share a dish), which forges links between the people of Caylus, the region’s ex-pat inhabitants and summer visitors. The association has around 100 members, whose annual subscription has enabled us to provide a financial contribution to the council to help restore the lavoir. The restoration itself began on the 27th January 2017 and its official inauguration will take place probably this spring. Today, the lavoir and the square where it is situated act as a focal point for village events and festivities. Although not originally designed as a market hall, the lavoir is now the ideal venue for the traditional Saturday market and for other activities, including those organised by Caylus Notre Village. The public lavoir was constructed following a decision of the Caylus town council on 19th March 1922. The metal roof, of a type known as “Baltard”, is composed of an iron framework, roofing panels and decorative insignia, which give it its distinctive appearance. Other, more traditional, lavoirs in the area generally have stone walls and tiled roofs. This style of construction makes the Caylus lavoir a remarkable and unique site in our region. The before-and-after photos of the lavoir have reinforced our intention to develop, improve and protect

Caylus lavoir after restoration

other sites which contribute to the charm of our village. This year’s calendar of events is listed on our website and in the Caylus Tourist Office leaflet and includes: • The Pentecost walks around several different circuits, 21st May; • An auberge espagnole, 23rd June (to be confirmed); • The summer rally, 12th August. More information can be found on the Caylus Notre Village website: http://caylusnotrevillage.

100, Route de Villefranche 82160 CAYLUS Tél. : 0033 (0)5 63 30 59 77 Cave à Vins | Wine Shop Vins du Sud-Ouest & d’Ailleurs, Spiritueux et bien plus ! South-West Wines & Other Regions, Spirits and mo more !

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local

Two Towns


A Tale of

The second of our two towns – Penne d’Agenais


enne d’Agenais (47140) is a former fortified town set in a naturally defensive position, high above the River Lot. The name Penne is Celtic in origin, meaning spur or mountain peak. The town appears to have prospered under Roman rule as many villas have been uncovered. Over the centuries the town has dealt with invasions by among others, the Vandals, Alemanni, Goths, and Franks. Richard the Lionheart, was attracted by the strategic location of Penne and continued the town’s development by constructing large fortifications. The Albigensian (Cathar) Crusades brought sieges, burning heretics at the stake and general all-round horror. Then, during the Hundred Years’ War, control of Penne passed backwards and forwards between the French and the English and even more burning and blood-letting took place. The Wars of Religious were no kinder with garrisons of men put to the sword; and many bodies thrown into the Château’s well, as well as the destruction of the original church. Today the ‘medieval’ town sits peacefully on the hill and is most easily recognised by the glinting,

silver domes of the Byzantine-Romanesque-style, Notre-Dame de Peyragude Basilica which sits right at the highest point. It’s relatively modern domes are juxtaposed with the ruins of the original Château. It was not until the 19th century that construction began on the Basilica we see today. Although this has been a religious site since 1000AD and a small chapel built in the rock, and dedicated to Mary, dates from then. This is thought to be the oldest chapel of its kind

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


in France. The first stone of today’s Basilica was laid in 1897 but the building was not completed until 1948 and was not consecrated until 1949. Despite the town’s tumultuous past, visitors today need have no fear! At the bottom of the hill, on the River Lot, lies the lovely Portde-Penne, here you’ll find amenities such as shops, bakers etc. It’s from here that you can cross the elegant bridge over the river to Saint Sylvestre sur Lot. The Halte Nautique, is a popular destination for lovers of all things water or boat based! During the summer a very popular (flat-bottomed boat) trip can be taken on ‘Les bâteaux de la Ferme du Lacay’ from just outside the village. On the hill you’ll find the very pretty, well-preserved ‘medieval’ town with lovely (sometimes steep) streets to wander around. There are traditional craft shops and plenty of places to stop for a drink or a bite to eat. We recommend calling in to see Jean-Paul from le CAFÉ DES ARTS, no visit would be complete without! A popular meeting point is the Place Paul Froment (see p. 54). If you can walk all the way up to the Basilica and the old Château you’ll benefit from lovely, long views of the valley below. A view enjoyed regularly by the very many pilgrims walking Le chemin de Saint-Jacques-de-Compostelle which passes through the town. In recent years, considerable effort has been made to enhance, protect and explain the very many historical and architectural elements of this enigmatic town. It rightly attracts many artists and historians and is well worth your time to visit. More information from Photo credits: V. Rousseau

Penne Station On May 30th, 1944, 1,200 prisoners from the Eysses Detention Camp (in the Commune of Villeneuve-sur-Lot) were brought to Penne Station to be deported to the Dachau Concentration Camp. Several were killed by the SS during the march between the Camp and Penne Station. A memorial was erected next to the station in memory of this deportation. The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Jacques Leuzy

The stained-glass windows (47 in total) of the Basilica of Notre-Dame de Peyragude in Penne-d’Agenais was the major work of Jacques Leuzy. Jacques was born in Paris in 1922 and studied at the School of Fine Arts in Toulouse. He opened a stained-glass workshop in Moissac in 1946. As well as working in stainedglass Jacques was also a painter, and mosaicist. Notably, he also created the Basilica’s colourful mosaic tympanum. He was a lover of abstract compositions and a real student of colour. He died in Moissac at the age of only 39.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


L’art du tissage et de la tapisserie


fter creating textile-based works of art for 20 years in the Dordogne, Sylvie Boyer set up her workshop in the lovely rue Bombecul in Penne d’Agenais, in 1997. Sylvie is a mistress in the art of working with textiles, she uses many different processes and materials to achieve her masterpieces. These includes sculptures, murals, woven fabric, accessories, and tapestries. Sylvie believes that ‘fabric offers infinite creativeopportunities and brings together traditional crafts from many different regions of the world’. For anyone interested in learning, Sylvie offers weaving courses at various levels (English spoken). A wonderful way to share the richness of her experience and enthusiasm whilst learning or improving a great traditional craft. Sylvie Boyer, Artiste Textile, Tisserande, 1 rue Bombecul - Penne-d’Agenais. 05 53 36 68 66 -

Relaxation in Penne

Introductory Offer - Your first session or massage (of an hour) is reduced to only 30 euros

March saw the opening of an exciting and hopefully ‘soothing’ new business in Penne d’Agenais. Espace Horizon can be found at 4 bld de l’Horizon. This new enterprise specialises in well-being and relaxation. Three ladies, Carole Couzineau, Marion Tournay and Emmanuelle Lucas are going to be working together to offer a range of treatments and therapies. So, for information about therapeutic shiatsu, call Carole on 0769575861. For sophrology relaxation, call Marion on 0645143085 and finally speak to Emmanuelle about yoga, meditation, relaxation and massage, on 0676586276.

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Nous aimons notre patrimoine !


lors qu’une certaine uniformisation des modes de vie galope, beaucoup tentent de préserver l’héritage de leurs ancêtres. C’est ainsi que le nombre d’associations dont « Les amis de… » ne cesse d’augmenter, à Penne et à proximité j’en compte une dizaine, deux créées l’année dernière, Les amis de Cailhavet, Les amis de Saint-Pierre de Noailhac. Il s’agit de conserver des monuments mais aussi des traditions dans des domaines très différents qui font la beauté et la richesse de notre territoire : architecture, environnement, gastronomie, langues régionales… Chez nous comme dans toute l’Aquitaine, véritable verger, les conditions sont réunies pour produire toute sorte de fruits et légumes de qualité. En vallée du Lot comme sur les plateaux du Pays de Serres aux confins du Quercy c’est un pur bonheur d’aller au marché pour rencontrer les producteurs ! À Penne, à Souleilles (Frespech) ou à Dausse on peut même déguster sur place. À la traditionnelle Foire à la tourtière, le deuxième dimanche de juillet, les rares spécialistes qui savent encore faire cette pâtisserie sont réunies par la Confrérie des Tourtiéraires pour un concours. Je ne peux pas parler de patrimoine gastronomique sans évoquer le pruneau dit d’Agen sous toutes ses formes, mi-cuit, fourré, au chocolat, en confiture, à l’eau de vie... Sur les marchés que je viens d’évoquer, il est de plus en plus rare d’entendre la langue du pays, l’occitan, ou patois local, ici languedocien parlé sur la rive droite de la Garonne qui a été la langue maternelle de ceux qui sont nés jusqu’aux années vingt. Certains jeunes n’ont pas voulu que ce patrimoine linguistique disparaisse. La langue parlée par Aliénor d’Aquitaine, par les troubadours et les poètes comme Mistral ou Paul Froment a retrouvé un regain de vitalité grâce à plusieurs initiatives. L’École Occitane d’été à Villeneuve réunit chaque année une centaine de personnes du monde entier qui s’intéresse à cette langue romane.

À Penne, le prix littéraire Paul Froment récompense depuis 1972 les meilleures œuvres occitanes. Cette année, le 3 juillet, une Journée Paul Froment sera organisée en hommage au poète mort il y a 120 ans avec les jeunes des écoles bilingues et ceux de la Calandrete créée par l’association Envol (école avec une méthode d’immersion linguistique dès la maternelle). C’est encore une association de passionnés d’histoire, l’association PHP, Pays, Histoire et Patrimoines qui ouvrira une librairie associative début mai près de la porte de la ville. Des ouvrages sur l’histoire et les patrimoines, en français et en anglais, des animations et des visites accompagnées y seront proposés toute l’année.

Maria Garrouste, raconteuse de pays Je peux vous faire découvrir le patrimoine local lors des visites commentées et chantées de Penne-d’Agenais, des églises romanes des environs et des peintures murales de Sainte-Quitterie de Massels. Sur rendez-vous par téléphone, 06 11 59 33 92. Vous aussi, vous pouvez nous faire part de vos billets d’humeur, de vos intérêts associatifs ou caritatifs, nous parler de votre ville ou de votre passion .... Alors, à vos stylos pour notre prochaine édition de Juillet : nous attendons vos textes en français !

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


PAUL FROMENT (1875-1898) Paul Froment died 120 years ago. He was born in Floressas in the Lot, the son of poor peasant farmers whose crops and fortune were ruined by an infestation of phylloxera. When he was 12 years old he left school and worked as a farm labourer in Penne d’Agenais. Whilst ploughing he began to rhyme in Langue d’Oc (medieval French). His poetic talent was admired by his friends and he was only 17 years old when his first poems were published in Lou Calel, the local Villeneuve sur Lot paper. Before joining the army and encouraged by the critics, he published 2 works which won prizes. The soldier disappeared on return from leave in Floressas. His body was fished out of the Rhone. Assassination or suicide? A broken heart? He was buried in his native village. The community of Penne, his adoptive homeland, honoured him with a bronze statue which was inaugurated in 1903. The statue was removed and melted down during the occupation. It was replaced by an engraved copper plate fixed onto the front wall of the Town Hall and inscribed with a verse which proudly acclaims the dignity of the farm labourer’s trade: -

Maï qu’un rei, lo lauraïre a dreit de se quilla More than a king, the labourer has the right to hold his head up high Credit - Maria Garrouste &

Art et Histoire


he Art et Histoire association, created in 2001 by art and heritage enthusiasts, aims to promote the development of artists and their crafts in Penne d’Agenais and Lot-et-Garonne by organising exhibitions, conferences and internships. For 13 years it has successfully organised the ‘Journées Européennes des Métiers d’Art’, the annual national operation to raise awareness and promote crafts with demonstrations, high-quality exhibitions and shows. Another Association highlight is ‘JEUDI A PENNE’, friendly evenings where the public can meet the artists in their workshops and the association’s supporters along with music and aperitifs. In 2014 and 2015 the association provided the opportunity for trainees to create bronze works using the “lost wax” process under the guidance of a bronzeworker from Burkina Faso. Since 2016, Art et Histoire has focussed on exhibitions of multi-disciplinary artists. Pauline Jurquet, ceramist; Alain Mignien, visual artist and Benoît Rouer, plastic painter, united for a one-off event: a joint work between Pauline and Benoit: ‘The aquariums’, a superb installation in perfect balance with Alain’s murals.

This proved a very popular exhibition. The association’s next event will take place from 11 to 20 May 2018 at L’Espace Gambetta in Penne. When 4 contemporary ceramicists will present ‘Grands Formats’. Including, Rob Brandt, Karin Heeman, Petri Voët, all 3 of them Dutch and often resident in Penne. The 4th, Pauline Jurquet, from Trentels will show a selection of largescale work. This will undoubtedly be the artistic event of this spring! All information is on Contact: Sylvie Boyer, President 06 74 72 62 34; If you want to join in our cultural events, if you have projects, ideas or if you just want to offer support, please contact the association.

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


Pays, Histoire et Patrimoines Les éditions Fragile have published many publications (some of them also in English) covering the history of the region, including one about Penne d’Agenais. Their website is a great resource for anyone interested in history. The president Maria Garrouste is an extremely knowledgeable art historian and former tourism president, a well-known lady around Penne d’Agenais.


n Clémence’s shop you can imagine being surrounded by flowers from a dew-covered meadow. Simply walking through her door is a treat for your senses. It’s hard to imagine just how this busy lady juggles the management of this delicately, fragrant-business. Clémence grows her plants from seed to flower (or leaf) as well as collecting wild plants and flowers. She knows how to efficiently dry each of them to retain their specific properties. She distils her plants in an alembic and collects the hydrolate (floral waters) which are then stored in blue, opaque, bottles to minimise light damage. Many of her plants have multiple uses, some for well-being, some culinary and some for the preparation of cosmetics. Then of course there are her teas! With such an intimate knowledge of plants and their

qualities, Clémence can help you select your own fragrant tea option. Or for the keen cooks, or as a great gift for one you may know, what about her carefully flavoured salts? For people that would like to learn more about working with plants there are workshops such as ‘plants for cosmetics’ ‘understanding plants, and occasionally ‘cooking with plants’. This little shop is open on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons – if you’re travelling, please call to check as occasionally these opening times get interrupted with fairs. You can also look out for some of Clémence’s products in local organic shops. Clémence Fregard.”pied-bas”, 47140 PENNE D’AGENAIS ; ; Clemence Herbesetsens

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


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Tasting the lot wine tour

from here to there! Rosé wine: who makes the best?


ell, as many people say when they talk about wine, I know what I like! But why is that? Is it because you’ve found a vineyard which you enjoy driving to and the people there. Or, where you can be understood and so you can ask questions. Or, do you actually like the wine! When Tasting the Lot arranges wine tastings in people’s homes, we cover the bottles. Quite often people have tasted the wine before and don’t recognise it. Or, they have previously said they don’t like it and now love it! ‘That’s my favourite’ when asked which one they prefer, only to find out it is one they have previously said they absolutely hated! Our perception can lead us down the wrong path, especially where wine is concerned. Rosé wine is NOT made from mixing white and red grapes. Though some argue that this makes the finest wines. Champagne, before you wonder which ones I am talking about! Rosé is made by, in most cases, draining the juice from the grapes a few hours after harvesting (especially in The Lot). This juice, especially from the Malbec grape is dark almost black-purple. It looks like blackcurrant sorbet. This is generally vinified separately to specifically make rosé wine. We’ve a plethora of delicious rosé wines in our region. Get out there and visit some vineyards. I have

recently been travelling around finding new wines in our region. Some of our favourites in The Lot come from Domaine du Garinet, Clos Siguier, Chateau de Chambert, Hauts St George to name but a few. Close to Caylus, one of our featured villages this edition is a co operative vineyard which I strongly advise you all to visit. Great selection of wines from 29 producers for 120 hectares of vineyards spread over the terroirs of the AOC Coteaux du Quercy. They are called The Vignerons de Quercy. 4555 Route of Paris, 82270-Montpezat de Quercy Tel: 05 63 02 03 50 They have a fabulous selection of wines. Last year I couldn’t drink enough of their Etc range. This year I am leaning towards the Le Mas Rosé. It is made from a blend of 3 grapes, Cabernet Franc, Malbec and Merlot, aged in large 400lt oak barrels and just waiting to be enjoyed! Happy Tasting.


For more information on wine tasting evenings, in your own home or holiday venue please do get in contact either on Facebook: Tasting The Lot, Quercy or follow us on Twitter or Instagram as we drink and eat our way around the Quercy.

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This is a question I asked a group of engineering students in Toulouse recently when I did a talk on ‘Self Aware Leaders in Management’. Self awareness, emotional intelligence etc are vital ingredients to surviving in today’s hectic, stressful and demanding work environments – and of course, everyday life. So many of us lack self confidence, are not aware of our strengths and weaknesses and listen to that horrid little ‘person’ who sits on our shoulder filling our head with negative thoughts and self doubt. We live in an uncertain world. Young adults are coming into the workplace totally unsure of who they are. People are talking about Generation Me and Millennials. Mental health issues are soaring among young adults. If we know more about ourselves like “who am I, what am I good at, how does my behaviour affect others?” we are far less likely to suffer from anxiety and depression simply because we understand ourselves. Recognising when we need help is half the battle. If this interests you ask yourself some of the questions like: ‘what are my beliefs and values, what is important to me and am I fulfilling that?’ I totally appreciate it’s not that easy or simple however if we take the time to understand more about ourselves we will be nicer to each other, we will be less stressed and we will be more able to find contentment in this uncertain world. Irena-Marie is a Mind Management Coach using a combination of therapeutic tools such a clinical hypnotherapy, BWRT®, NLP and Mindfulness. She works 1-2-1 with children aged seven upwards, adolescents and adults – as well as running group workshops for companies. To find out more visit or or email Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Auberge de Miramont David & Karine look forward to welcoming you

Tapas Evening on the first Friday of each month. Opening Hours: Lunches ~ Monday to Saturday Evenings ~ MAY - Friday & Saturday. JUNE - Thursday to Saturday Catering for Special Events 05 63 94 65 57 auberge de miramont Miramont de Quercy (82190)

Anglican Chaplaincy of Midi-Pyrénées & Aude Update from the Cahors Congregation All services are held at Centre Paroissial, 75 av J Lurçat, Terre Rouge, 46000 Cahors The Christian year follows the life, death and resurrection of Jesus and the gift of the Holy Spirit. Our weekly Sunday worship reflects the current Christian season. At Easter, we celebrated the resurrection of Jesus from the dead and his ascension into heaven. The annual Christian calendar allows us to remember Jesus at each important time and to recall the ministry of the holy people who have spread the Christian faith over the centuries. The season of Easter is celebrated for fifty days, culminating in the Day of Pentecost also called Whitsunday, the 20th May this year. Since the late fourth century, on the fortieth day of Easter the Church celebrates Christ’s ascension to heaven. This marks the end of his earthly ministry and the Feast of the Ascension is therefore closely connected with the theme of mission. Ascension Day this year falls on the 10th May and in France, is a national holiday. After Christ’s ascension, we celebrate the outpouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost on the disciples empowering them for mission (Acts 2.1-47). Ascension and Pentecost are closely linked. The Church is now to be the new body of Christ, filled with his life through the gift of the Holy Spirit.

The Sunday after Pentecost is called Trinity Sunday. Gregory IX instituted Trinity Sunday in 828 CE. This day is known for being the only major Christian festival that celebrates a church doctrine rather than an event in its sacred history. It is dedicated to the Christian belief in the Trinity – Father, Son and Holy Spirit – and falls on the Sunday following Pentecost each year. The belief of one God in three elements is an essential tenet of the Christian faith and the weeks of the Christian Calendar recall this by counting the weeks from Pentecost until the commencement of Advent in December. This season is packed with important dates – don’t forget, Father’s Day, which is on June 17th! We can be found each Sunday at 10am at Centre Paroissial, 75 avenue J Lurçat, Terre Rouge, 46000 Cahors. We can also assist with weddings, baptisms and funerals. Please come and visit us. For a detailed programme of our services and events see or take a look at our facebook page

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Sauzet: ARTSauzet The next Art Exhibition will take place May 18th - 21st (3 - 7pm) at the Art Gallery - 214 Grand’Rue - 46140 Sauzet Six artists will be very pleased to explain their watercolour, sculptures, felting fashion, typical jewellery, paintings and mosaics. They look forward to welcoming you to the vernissage on the first day at 6pm.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


For all your joinery and internal renovation projects • Made to measure doors and windows in wood, aluminium and PVC • Traditional and electric rolling shutters • Bespoke staircases and joinery projects • Installation of kitchens and bathrooms • Electric gates and garage doors • Balconies, patios and other tiling projects

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LANDSCAPE DESIGN Meet with the client Planning advice Prepare the plan for the garden


Expert help and advice for the creation and the maintenance of your garden We work throughout departments 46, 47 and 82.

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Stone work and all aspects of renovation Subcontractors to the trade and a professional service to the public References available No obligation quotations 06 52 49 03 57 Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Wines of SW France

Château Petit Gravet Ainé’s Saint Emilion Grand Cru (Bordeaux, Right Bank)


his 2.3-hectare vineyard is run by Catherine Papon Nouvel and has been owned by her family since 1792. Catherine also owns the neighbouring Chateau Clos St. Julien. Both vineyards are in Saint Emilion. The very special Petit Gravet Ainé’s Grand Cru vines are very old and produce fruit with compelling qualities. The Château Petit Gravet Ainé’s vineyard is situated not far from the village of St. Emilion. For those who have the chance to go to Saint Emilion, coming from Bordeaux you arrive in Saint Emilion on the D670. Before you take a left turn and climb to the village, Petit Gravet Ainé is on your left when you drive up to the village. The terroir consists of a unique combination of deep sand and clay soils. Petit Gravet Ainé is planted uniquely (for Saint Emilion) with 20% Merlot and 80% Cabernet Franc. This makes it a unique vineyard for the entire Bordeaux region and not just for the Right Bank. On average, Catherine’s vines are 70 years old. She’s also one of the few people to have converted

a Bordeaux vineyard to organic farming techniques. At Petit Gravet Ainé they use no pesticides, herbicides or systemic chemical treatments of any kind. The production process also limits the use of sulphites. Producing organic Bordeaux wine can be complicated by the weather conditions and the Atlantic’s influence. Consequently, very few people in the region are organically certified.

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Left Bank, Right Bank – what’s this all about? The Gironde Estuary is fed by the rivers Dordogne and Garonne and the soil on either side is quite different and so there’s a significant difference between Bordeaux wines from the Right Bank and the Left Bank. On the Left Bank where the soil is gravely it’s the powerful Cabernet Sauvignon that thrives. Whereas on the Right Bank where the terroir is limestone and clay the dominant grape is the rich Merlot. It is not just the soil that is different; the culture, style and character of wine production vary. It follows, so are the wines! They taste, smell, age and feel different.

Catherine learned her trade alongside her father. However, they both had very strong personalities and so in 1989 she left to work on her own in a small vineyard in the Côtes-de-Castillon appellation. Then in 1998 her father asked her to take over the 3 family vineyards: Chateau Petit Gravet Ainé, Clos Saint Julien and Chateau Gaillard. This lady vintner has an almost Burgundian philosophy, her 3 small vineyards don’t have a common link. Each with a unique style pertinent to its own terroir. Catherine’s aim is to achieve harmony, balance and finesse. As the years pass she prefers to make wines

that are less powerful. Wines that simply reveal the fruit in harmony with the maturation process. As with life itself, balance is the key to a successful wine. At Petit Gravet Ainé harvesting is done by hand with small trays, and the grapes are meticulously sorted by hand, twice. This is one of the rare vineyards that uses a small traditional basket press and then a natural fermentation with only natural indigenous yeast. Malolactic fermentation is carried out in new French oak barrels and aged for 18 months. Only about 7 000 bottles are produced for each vintage, so you need to keep your eyes open to find a bottle of Catherine’s ‘balanced’ and very personal wine. Catherine PAPON-NOUVEL We are delighted to work with Thomas Gisbert who was born and bred to a wine producing tradition in S W France. However, he’s now in Australia where he promotes and imports wines from our region to share with his Australian clients. Thomas knows so much about the ‘less obvious’ but brilliant producers. We hope to meet Thomas himself in one of our later editions, that’s if we can catch him on one of his visits to his family vineyard.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


The Délégation Militaire Départementale du Lot is looking for Lot residents who are either still active or retired military personnel of the following nationalities: British, Belgian, American, Canadian, Japanese, New Zealanders …… To take part in a ceremony in Cahors on the afternoon of November 11th. Please contact: Adjudant-chef Geneviève Curoux; Sous officier traitant; DMD du Lot; Caserne Bessieres; 1 Rue de la Barre; 46000 Cahors. Email: geneviè

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NIGHT-TIME WALK & Gourmet Meal Saturday, June 9 - Touffailles

On the evening of Saturday, June 9, the Comité des Fêtes in Touffailles are hosting a night-time walk and gourmet meal. The walk will take in some of the beautiful and hidden paths in and around the commune and walkers will be treated to a five-course meal en route. We start in Touffailles itself at 19h with an aperitif and a home-made soup of fresh, seasonal vegetables. The walk then begins at 20h, heading into the countryside around Touffailles, where the starter – a salade de gésiers – will be served in a suitably picturesque spot while we watch the sun set. Back on the chemin, we continue the walk (at our own pace) until the plat de résistance is served

at another spot along the route. Waiting for you will be a large entrecôte steak with trimmings and cooked as you like. As with the starter, red and rosé wine and bottled water will be served. The route then brings us back into Touffailles where there will be cheese, before dessert is served (with a tipple to accompany it of course) and then coffee. A bonfire and music will ensure a cosy ambiance for walkers to enjoy long into the night. The route is not challenging and will be around 9-11km in length – taking about three hours depending on your pace (and how long you stop to enjoy the food of course). Places on the walk are limited and so reservation is a must for this popular annual event. Places cost 22e for adults and 8e for children aged 12 and under. Reservations close on Monday, June 4. Walkers are reminded that they must bring their own torches and cutlery. To reserve or for more information, call 05 63 94 36 70 (meal times only) and 09 67 46 71 20 (between 10am and 4pm only – English spoken). Président, Comité des Fêtes de Touffailles

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SUMMER 2018 - BISCARROSSE PLAGE Light, sunny and spacious apartment, with ocean views, sleeps six. To let direct from owner from June 15 to Sept. 15.

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Siret: 514 571 157 000 15 Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Mark & Brice’s lovely restaurant & bar where a warm welcome awaits everyone! (Including if they’re ever passing Björn, Benny …..) Readers living close to the small village of Verfeil sur Seye (between Najac and St Antonin) may well already know Brice and Mark and their restaurant, La Seye et Vous. Moving to a new country and getting a new business up and running can be challenging – we asked Mark a little about his experiences. If you can remember a life ‘before France’ – how would you sum it up? The No. 1 bus down the Old Kent Road, hoping Brice had not been knocked off his bike again, and a few pints of Kernel at the local in Bermondsey. Why this region and this village? We have had a property 5 minutes away from the restaurant for over 5 years, and always had the intention of moving here permanently. The opportunity to take over the restaurant provided the catalyst for the move earlier than we expected. Was opening a restaurant always the dream? The restaurant purchase was a fortunate opportunity, which complemented Brice’s skills. He’d originally trained at an hotel and catering school on the shores of Lake Geneva. The timing was good as our house, whilst far from being completely renovated, was sufficiently so to be habitable all year long.

Did the restaurant need much alteration? The aesthetics of the bar-restaurant were not our taste, so that was an immediate task, but the kitchen was perfectly functional and had been well maintained.

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We always said we would not make any significant changes in the first year, but rather learn and slowly make changes based on experience and engagement with our regulars. Our next project is to update and improve the exterior, so we hope to have the terrace and paintwork freshly decorated for the summer. The terrace is important to people in the summer, as it is on a quiet road opposite the Halle – an ideal spot to have a drink and eat. For people that do not know the village – what’s to love? For a small village it’s pretty youthful, with several active communities, including a growing eco hameau, who supply us with veg in the summer. The village shop, garage, and the farmers’ shop provide additional attractions and vitality. We’re lucky to have them, and we hope we provide a useful complementary service to the people of Verfeil and the neighbouring populations. We particularly value the various associations that keep up a regular programme of activities in the village, and we are delighted that they choose us for their regular group lunches and dinners, along with the numerous walking groups that use us as a well-deserved pause! What has been the greatest challenge? With any new enterprise the challenges are the unknowns, and the restrictions of time. For us the

additional challenge was Brice suffering a detached retina just before we left London! It is still not rectified, but regular trips to London for what were never the final operations were time consuming, exhausting and expensive. How he managed to keep positive despite the pain, discomfort and disabling impact of poor vision whilst managing the business is extraordinary. How would you describe your bar-restaurant? Welcoming, comfortable and most importantly: good food at great value. Have you further plans? In the short term just the terrace improvements, but in the longer term we will consider creating two distinct areas for the bar and restaurant. This was something the previous owners wanted to do, but we are not ready yet for the expense of that. Finally, who (dead or alive) would you and Brice most like to just walk through the restaurant door? Brice thinks ‘Dalida’ and for me it would be ‘Abba’! Please check the website for opening hours during the year. Mark and Brice, Café Restaurant La Seye et Vous; Place de la Halle; 82330 Verfeil sur Seye. 05 81 04 12 02/06 46 36 68 55;; La Seye Et Vous

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


PUT A SPRING IN YOUR STEP! Welcome to Spring! With the lengthening days, fine weather and not too many pesky horse flies Spring is the ideal time to begin fitness regimes for horse and rider. In this article I am going to focus on posture, core stability and Pilates for the horse! Yes, the horse not the human! (Although the posture and core stability of the human is very important too!)


et’s begin with a little bit of anatomy. Making up the spine the horse has 7 cervical (neck) vertebrae (incidentally the same amount as you, a mouse or a giraffe!), 18 thoracic vertebrae (with ribs attached), 6 lumbar vertebrae, a fused sacrum and up to 23 coccygeal (tail) vertebrae. The horse has over 700 skeletal muscles intertwined with a complex fascial system helping to maintain and control spinal posture and assist in movement of the whole body. So, what is the horse’s CORE muscular system? And why does a horse need a strong CORE? If you can imagine the horses spine as a suspension bridge tethered at each end by the shoulder girdle the front and the pelvis to the rear. Now picture a large weight hanging off the underside of the suspension bridge i.e: the internal organs, intestines, limbs and muscles…. Already the bridge is beginning to sag … now put a weight on top of the suspension bridge i.e: a saddle and rider and it is any wonder that the bridge doesn’t collapse totally! It doesn’t collapse partly because of the CORE stability muscles. The CORE stability muscles include the muscles that surround the spine, the abdominal muscles that support the weight from below and the neck and pelvic muscles that help with the tethering either end. It has been proven in the horse (and human) that any kind of injury involving the back (no matter how minor) will cause a specific deep spinal stabilising muscle called the ‘Multifidus’ to be switched off and therefore start to waste away. This creates a problem and a weakness in the back. The horse then starts to compensate by using other muscles not usually used for stability to stabilise the back, they fatigue easily and then predispose the horse to more injury and so the circle of debilitation begins. By increasing the strength of the CORE stability muscles, you can help prevent these problems occurring, but you can also assist in rehabilitating and strengthening your horse if a problem has already occurred. So how can you help your horse to get a strong CORE? Firstly, let me say that every horse, no matter

if he is ridden or not needs a strong CORE. Just the same as any human no matter if one is an athlete or office worker, a strong CORE is needed to help maintain strength, posture, flexibility and ultimately health. You can help increase the strength of these muscles in your horse with a few very simple exercises such as ‘active walking in-hand’ and ‘carrot stretches’. ‘Active Walking In-Hand’ (being led): It is important to make sure the horse is walking actively from behind i.e: using his hind quarters to propel him forwards not trailing his hind legs out behind him and slouching as he walks. You need to use your own energy to help create an active energy in your horse to stimulate a positive, marching walk. Creating this active walk (when done correctly) will really stimulate the CORE stability and postural muscles. After a 10 – 15 minute active walking you can perform some simple carrot stretches – using a carrot to encourage the horse to bring his head between his knees, head between his front fetlocks and then round to each side of his body. The key is to make sure he

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keeps his ears level at all times, so he doesn’t twist through the head and neck. It is also important to make sure he is engaging the abdominal muscles correctly. These carrot stretches are equivalent to you doing a sit-up and oblique-sit-up. They may seem like small exercises, but they are very powerful and effective when performed correctly. These are just a few very simple things you can do to help create and maintain CORE stability, strength and flexibility in your horse. During a consultation I can demonstrate these plus other exercises and tailor a programme specific to your horse and his requirements. Please do get in touch if you wish to discuss your horse or to arrange a consultation, I will be delighted to hear from you. Many thanks for reading. Kate Lockwood. Manual Therapist for Animals. Msc Animal Manipulation. B.Ost Med. 06 02 71 03 45, Equi-Lot


2 gardens (opposite sides of D656 nr Lacadayre and St Amans de Pech) will be open on the 5th of May from 2 – 6pm John Massey’s garden at Pardissous, Massels (47140) and Val Martin’s at Astie, Blaymont (47470). Teas/coffee/homemade cakes will be served along with a plant stall. 3€ per person, or 5€ per couple for entry to both gardens. All proceeds go to the French charity ‘A Chacun son Everest’. Enquires to 0632070184 or For 10€ you can get an annual ticket for all the gardens being opened throughout the year. Details of other Open Gardens will be available at Pardissous on the 5th. More details of the Open Gardens Scheme at

Diplômes: BEPA Paysagiste/ BAC PRO GCCF/ COP l

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Exchanging your UK Driving licence Many British nationals living in France decide to exchange their UK driving licence for a French one. Even though it is not a compulsory step, it is recommended. Furthermore, if you are stopped by the police for a points-offence, it can be mandated.


lthough is fine to use your UK licence in France, you must be careful when driving in the UK if the address on your licence is incorrect or out of date. Failing to inform the DVLA when you change address can land you with a £1,000 fine. Finally, the UK licence naturally expires at age 70 and renewing it from abroad can be tricky. Recently the procedure for changing a licence has been overhauled. No more trips to the Préfecture as the affair is now dealt with centrally in Nantes. Applications to exchange an EU /EEA driving licence should be sent by post to: Préfecture de la LoireAtlantique, CERT EPE-PCI, 6 quai Ceineray, BP 33515, 44035 Nantes Cedex 1

Documents required: • Cerfa Form n° 14879 * 01 completed, dated and signed • Cerfa Form n° 14948 * 01 reference 06 must be printed in colour, completed, dated and signed • Photocopy of driving licence in colour, both sides • Photocopy of passporta • Photocopy of recent utility bill • Proof of usual residence in France in the last 185 days (trips are allowed) for example work contract, health cover certificate, ‘avis d’imposition’ (income tax form) • 3x passport photos • 1 self-addressed envelope (50 g “ready to mail” format)

Certain licence categories in France require a medical visit. When this is the case, it is also required in the exchange of a foreign licence for a French one. This medical is usually not necessary if you just require a licence for a normal car. It is therefore possible to simplify the process by waiving your rights to drive anything above what is called in France the Permis B. If the licence was issued in the licence holder’s maiden name, proof of married name is required (supply birth and marriage certificates and passport). The licence will be exchanged for one in the equivalent category. Once the French licence is issued, the original must be returned to the prefecture. The exchange of an EU licence for a French one is free in many parts of France. • Be aware that it can be several months for the French licence to be issued. • A towing permit issued on some licences may not be included in the new French licence. We can apply on your behalf – Contact AFA ( - 05 63 95 33 40) We have successfully negotiated this procedure and the first French licences obtained through the new system have been delivered to our clients. In our experience the procedure has taken around 6 months. We can only hope that as any teething problems are resolved, this period will be reduced. In the meantime, we strongly advise that you do not wait until the last minute if your UK licence is approaching expiry. Our other Services include: • Certified Translations • Small business registration • French tax return completion • Application for Healthcare • Administrative issues • Language tuition

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The association Aider-Help&Hope continues to work tirelessly for displaced people and refugees, please come and support us at the following funding raising concerts: Concert TIBETAN BOWLS! Elisabeth van de Wilde is giving us another opportunity to hear her healing Tibetan bowls this time at the chapel of St Germain, Laroque Timbault, on 29th April at 4pm. ALEXANDRE BODAK A wonderful piano concert on Sunday 20th May at 5pm in St Barthélémy church, Lauzerte. 8th July in Touffailles A lovely evening hosted by Dominique Guillot: please contact us a bit later for details.;;

Aide et Espoir aux Réfugiés-Help and Hope

The Orchestra and Choir of the Centre Philharmonique – Concerts in May The OCP will be giving their regular series of concerts at Ascension and Pentecost. The year the main work chosen is the so-called ‘Mass in Times of War’ by Joseph Haydn – but Haydn is incapable of solemn music, it’s as jolly and uplifting as all his work! You get two Haydns for the price of one – his brother Michael lived under Joseph’s successful shadow, but still has the family capacity for tuneful cheerfulness in a Te Deum which finishes with an Verteuil d’Agenais 47260 Saturday 12 May 20:30 at the église exhilarating fugue (if we sing it right!). Finally, as an extra cherry on the cake, we perform the Bach Cantata no. 140, Villeréal 47210 Sunday 13 May 16:00 at the église ‘Wachet auf’. Come and hear us! Bergerac 24100 Friday 18 May 20:30 at the Temple Moirax 47310 Saturday 19 May 20:30 at the Prieuré Adults 20e, 12–25 10e, less than 12 ans free. Puy l’Evêque 46700 Sunday 20 May 16:00 at the église Tickets at the door, reservations 05 53 01 76 08, 05 65 36 45 98, or Villeneuve sur Lot 47300 Monday 21 May 16:00 at the Eglise d’Eysses

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018



he decline in bee numbers is a major concern. Their survival is linked to the well-being of all living creatures. Bees are critical to a healthy biodiversity and food chain (as an irreplaceable and effective pollinator). Plus, they provide products used in apitherapy, industry and which are also delicious to eat. There’s been a lot of publicity about the plight of bees. So, nobody will be able to say that they did not realise the danger.

• The choice of site for a new colony is a collective decision-making process. • The brain of a bee is 1mm3 but it communicates, navigates and learns. • The average size of a colony is 40,000. • The life expectancy of a worker bee is 3-5 weeks. • The life expectancy of a queen bee is 3–5 years. • Bees are non-aggressive unless attacked.

A little bit about bees

• They feed the bee larvae • They feed the queen with royal jelly secreted from special glands on their heads. • They gather nectar to make honey. •They build combs with their wax glands. • They collect and distribute pollen using the hairs on their legs. • They guard the hive’s entrance. • They forage up to 7km from the hive.

• There are many species of bee – the best known is the honey bee. • Within a colony there’s a queen, worker-bees (female) and drones (males). • Each bee come from an egg laid by the colony’s queen. • The worker-bees (about 90% of the colony) hatch from fertilized eggs. • The drones hatch from a virgin bee’s un-fertilized eggs. • To become a worker-bee a fertilized egg is nourished by pollen and honey. • There is only 1 queen bee in a colony. • The queen is fed by the workers with royal jelly. • The queen lays up to 200 000 eggs per year.

Worker-bees have many tasks but are adapted to suit

What do bees do for us? They produce Honey created from the nectar they harvest. The composition, colour and taste of honey varies with, amongst other things, which flowers they have visited. A useful, healthy food source with antibiotic properties.

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local



PENSION ‘Bonnes Vacances’

SATURDAY 9 JUNE, 10:00 - 16:00

Lavolvene, Belveze 82150 Please call me for more info or to arrange a visit

Contact no: 05 65 20 13 53 In support of local children

What’s a solitary bee? Unlike honey bees which live in highly organised and social colonies, solitary bees live alone and come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. They’re useful in the garden and great pollinators. These bees nest in the earth, dead wood or other insect’s holes. They’re generally active earlier in the year than other bees. It’s well worth planting to attract them and creating shelters to house them.

Why are bees in peril? There are many reasons for the decline in bee numbers. Including, the destruction of natural habitats

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They produce Royal Jelly which is a secreted by the nurse ‘worker-bees’ to feed the queen. It’s produced in small quantities and is pale and acidic. This jelly allows bee larvae to become queens. It’s rich in vitamins, trace elements and amino acids. A sort-after ingredient for human well-being. They produce propolis by mixing their saliva with their wax, they use this to seal and protect their hives. This is then used for some traditional medicines, as well as some manufacturing and industrial processes. They gather Pollen from the stamens of flowers, as a protein food for themselves. This also contains carbohydrates and vitamins. Making it an excellent dietary supplement. They produce wax in their wax glands which can then be used for making cosmetics and candles. Most importantly they pollinate most of the food sources on the planet. Without this the earth’s food supply starts to dwindle.

Peaceful Cattery

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and food sources; so that bees become tired (and therefore weak) looking for places to colonise or feed. The European or Asian hornets kill bees and so trapping hornets is encouraged. However, the parasitic Varroa mite is the worst bee enemy. Chemical pesticides are also very harmful, some very toxic pesticides have already destroyed billions of bees! Man’s choice of agricultural methods has made him one of the bee’s greatest enemies.

What can we all do to help? To redress this decline, we need to: Make our gardens more bee-friendly. Garden without pesticides. Support beekeepers and consume local produce. Encourage others to do the same! We can also all ‘make a date’ (or even a few dates) with the bees perhaps one between the 15th and 24th June. This is when you may notice a national campaign running urging everyone to plant melliferous flowers. Plants such as, borage, rape, calendula, hyssop, phacelia, lavender, white mustard, and many others. Many local garden-centres will be getting involved and advising about the best plants for bees. This is the 2nd year of the campaign, organised by Observatoire Français d’Apidologie. Information will be available on If everyone just takes a little time during the campaign to plant one or two specific plants, we will be all helping to halt the bee’s demise. By Valérie Rousseau

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018




Maartje Schlepers has lived in the Lot since April 2014 and is happy to answer your insurance related questions.

Q. Please can you explain what to do following a car accident or breakdown? Also, if another vehicle is involved what information are we obliged to exchange? A. Sooner or later, most of us experience a car accident or breakdown. This can be stressful, especially if there are injuries. It helps if you understand what to do but firstly you must understand what you are covered for. All French insurance companies (or nearly all) offer break down assistance abbreviated to assistance with their policies. Assistance may come automatically with a comprehensive policy or have been offered as an option. Normally this covers you for towing your car to the nearest garage. It does not pay for the repairs to your car. As an option you can also take out a replacement vehicle cover (véhicule de remplacement). So, if your vehicle is immobile, you are covered for a rental car for normally a maximum of 8 days after a break down; 15 days after an accident and up to 40 days after a theft (these allowances may vary). Unless your insurer tells you otherwise the procedures are: -

For a breakdown 1. Immediately call assistance, the number is usually on the green card or on the windscreen sticker. If you’re on a motorway and the police arrive, still inform assistance as soon as possible and obtain a dossier number. Even if the police have already called for a tow-truck, somebody will still have to pay for this. If assistance is informed they can take over and organise this. 2. Make sure you know your location, policy number, registration number and that you can explain the situation. Most assistance centers have English speaking staff. 3. Assistance will take your details and (if one has not been called by the police) will locate a tow truck (dépanneur). The assistance service usually informs you by SMS about the tow-truck’s arrival. Remember to ask for a dossier number in case you need to call them back. 4. If you’ve a preference for a certain garage you can try to negotiate this, but in most cases the car will be towed to the nearest garage. 5. If you’re a long distance from home assistance can arrange for a rental car; hotel: train ticket or taxi.

All this depends on the circumstances and only to cover you during the first day. It’s important to clearly explain your needs and let assistance make the arrangements for you. Failing to inform assistance will mean you are unlikely to recover your costs. 6. If your car is immobile for several days and if you took out the replacement vehicle option, the assistance service can arrange and pay for a rental car. If you didn’t take out this option and your car is left immobile a distance from home, then assistance may pay for a train ticket or a taxi to travel back to the garage and pick up your car once it is repaired. It is important to let the assistance service arrange this for you.

For an accident with no third-party – If your car is immobile and you need it recovering, then follow the steps for after a breakdown. – You must quickly inform your insurer. If you’re covered for the damage to your car the insurer will ask you to send a declaration. Alternatively, you can use the accident form (which should be in your glove box) to declare the details of the accident. – You should inform the insurer of your preferred garage for the repairs. If you’ve no preference they will select one. Some insurers may impose one (garage agréé). – The insurer will arrange for an assessor to see the car (physically or via garage photographs), he will make a report. Then you arrange the repairs with the garage and they invoice the insurer, except for any policy-excess, which you pay.

For an accident involving a third-party – If you are involved in an accident with a third-party(s) you need to agree who is responsible. This is often difficult as it may not be obvious, and/or somebody may not wish to accept responsibility. – Whatever happens make sure the accident form gets filled out and signed by all parties at the scene. An accident form (constat amiable) is the official insurance claim form in France and without this you have no proof. If you weren’t ‘at fault’ but the other party refuses to sign or leaves the scene it will be

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


difficult for your insurer to pursue a claim. Do write down the other car’s registration number and the name of the person as the police may be able to trace them. It’s difficult if they do not cooperate. A mobile phone/ camera may be useful here. – So, ideally you fill out an accident form at the scene, together, take your time and do this correctly. If you have difficulties understanding the French on the form (it’s best to consider this before an accident) you could call your agent for help, or perhaps keep an English translation along-side the official one. Simply exchanging names and telephone numbers and trusting all will be sorted is not advisable. – If the parties can’t agree on who is at fault and you didn’t insure your vehicle comprehensively you may have to pay for your own repairs even if it wasn’t your fault. This can also happen if a third party was uninsured. There’s a fund that can help in these situations but it’s a long procedure. If there’s a conflict you can call the police who will help determine who is at fault.

NOTE – the police as well as the pompiers or an ambulance must also be called when people are injured. If you drive out of France, your insurance is valid in all the countries named on the back of the green card (generally all European countries and a few more). This includes breakdown assistance if you’ve opted for it. IMPORTANT NOTE – If you would like a copy of an English language accident report form, please email Maartje and she will email you a copy. Maartje Schlepers, Assurances Benoit, La Plégade, 46150 Pontcirq, Tel Office 0972468223 (Mon to Thurs) Email: Orias 07005354 - 15005887

Beauville 47470 Summer 2018. In a packed 2018 summer calendar we have got plenty for everyone when the weather improves (writing this in the wettest March I can recall). The full agenda will be on the Tourist Office website at A novelty this year is a Terra-aventura course – a walking route around the Beauville to answer enigmas and find a treasure. Ideal for young explorers with a smartphone or tablet. Download the app. at (Site is also in English). Also, this year a number of guided evening nature walks are being organised in July and August – details are on the Tourist Office website Events start with the Bon Coeur book sale on the 1st May – over 10,000 books for everyone as well as delicious cakes, soup and refreshments and some larger items that we cannot fit in the boutique (see website or advert on page xx for hours). On the 24th May the Cancer support bike ride (see article pg 10) will be near the Canal du Midi and we will be supporting at St Jean de Thurac with a coffee break in the morning – come along and cheer! On Saturday the 16th June – Bovis Villa – the historical name for Beauville as it was well known for its cattle market will host the 2018 Lot et Garonne annual cattle breeders show “Journee d’elevage” organised with the Chambre d’Agriculture – so come along to see the pride of the farming community on display on Place du Carré.

Food and refreshments available, plenty of agricultural stalls and displays. The flyer (PDF attached) shows the summer night market bands on Friday’s throughout July and August and other main events. Over the winter we have constructed a robust stage for the musicians so they are more visible in the night markets, whilst some extra chairs and tables will help with the numbers. Information also on This year Bon Coeur are again hosting Antic Disposition on the Thursday 2nd August at Beauville – the play is Much Ado about Nothing, book tickets via and Bon Coeur will again be offering picnics with the benefits going to good causes – please book picnics with tickets, or via email: The giant Brocante will be under the trees on Place du Carré on the 12th August. Bon Coeur – the Association Loi 1901 which set up 5 years ago in Beauville to raise funds for charity has now made onward donations and grants of almost e50,000, a new website has just been set up: where there is information about the shop, events and how to contact us. Good donations and more volunteers always welcome – or call 06 89 53 24 78.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Tasting the lot

royal celebrations With a cherry on top! I can’t help it, I love France, every single thing about it, from the obvious love of wine, food, history, culture, people, traditions and customs to the endless red tape of trying to live here!


ll that said though I’m an English girl through and through! I was born in Stratford Upon Avon in the 60s and grew up being overseen by WI style ladies and ex-military, National Trust-volunteering, gentlemen. Moving to France I’ve been able to choose which parts of my life to replicate here. English celebrations are something I love! This spring sees a Royal Wedding and the birth of an heir to the British throne. I loved celebrating Prince William’s wedding alongside 5 lovely ladies at Montcuq. This time, I hope to have them all

New Season Garlic Soup

Cherry Sauce for Duck!



15 cloves garlic – peeled, 3 tblsp olive oil, 1 large sweet onion – chopped, 1 leek, white part only – washed well, chopped, 1.25lts chicken stock, 2 large potatoes – peeled and chopped, 250ml full fat milk, 1/2 cup chives – chopped, Salt and pepper to taste

2 lbs pitted cherries 50g caster sugar 400ml chicken stock 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar 175ml glass of red wine



In large pot, sauté onion and leek in oil until soft. Add stock, bring to a boil, then add potatoes and garlic. Simmer for one hour. Whisk in milk then puree soup in blender if a smooth consistency is desired. Add salt and pepper. Garnish with slightly dyed in red and blue colouring onion crisps!! (fry a little onion in food colouring to achieve the colour you wish!) I intend to sprinkle theses coloured onion pieces onto the top of the soup to serve.

Place the sugar and red-wine vinegar in a pan on a medium heat and reduce until you have a sticky caramel. Pour in the wine and the stock and reduce by 2/3. When you have the consistency you desire, add in the cherries. Stir and let cherries absorb some of the sauce. Serve! Tip: You can prepare the sauce in advance and re-heat when required

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


3 ème





Liat Coh en Valérie Duch âteau Stéph anie Jones Joseph Tawadros Alexandre Bernoud Les Frères Méduses Duo Bensa-Cardinot Ballaké Sissoko

18 > 21

Cours de guitare boutique Luth ier Scène jeunes talents comptines musicales dégustation de vin assiettes gourmandes bio



ThéÂtre de VERDURE

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with me for lunch so that we can celebrate Prince Harry’s wedding over a lengthy 4-courses with delicious wines. Food very patriotically coloured red, white and even a sprinkling of blue! Our white starter is going to be new season Garlic Soup.

Cherry Clafoutis

And then for something red Over the next 2 months the cherry trees will be laden with fruit. We’ve 2 types in our garden, one produces huge, fat, red-black cherries. I think they are called Bigarreau Burlat or the Bigorre cherry. Whatever their name, I think they’re a great start to a Royal wedding celebration! Cherries are good for you, in the 15th century a crushed cherry pip was prescribed for chest and stomach problems. Today, you can still find cherry stem tea, which is known as a diuretic and to help promote healthy kidney function. Cherry is part of the rose family and is, therefore, allegedly useful for fighting anaemia, cellulitis, constipation, cystitis, diuresis, flu, lithiasis, obesity, and rheumatism. Anyway, I love them, and they feature highly in my red theme! My main course will be duck breast Pan fried and accompanied by a delicious ruby-red sauce. Duck is terribly simple to cook, but if you would like more details please do email me at I am always happy to talk recipes! Continuing the red, white and blue theme; our dessert is going to be Cherry Clafoutis – but with a hint of blue! The blue comes from borage flowers. Everyone needs borage in their vegetable patch. It’s supposed to help increase the yield of strawberries when planted together. Borage provides cucumberflavoured leaves for tea as well as bright starry blue flowers for decorating salads and this year my clafoutis!

Luci Cox

Ingredients 600 g fresh sweet cherries, stemmed and pitted, 30 g butter, melted, 4 eggs, 240 ml milk, 100g flour, 1/4 tsp salt, 100 g sugar, 1/2 tsp almond extract (or 3 drops of almond essence), 1/2 tsp vanilla extract For dusting – powdered sugar Method Preheat the oven to 180C. Grease a round 26cm baking dish with butter. Dust with about 2 tbsp of sugar. Arrange the cherries in a single layer; set aside until you prepare the batter. Mix eggs with remaining sugar and salt. Stir in flour. Add milk, vanilla extract, almond extract and mix well until well blended. Add melted butter and stir to combine. The result is a batter-like mixture. Pour the mixture over the cherries. Bake for about 40-45 minutes until puffed and golden brown. Cool on a rack for few minutes while it deflates. Sprinkle with powdered sugar before serving. Serve warm or chilled with a dollop of cream and garnish with blue borage flowers.

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


Coping with excess cherry harvests Here’s an easy recipe to use up cherries if you have hundreds!

Cherry Wine

Ingredients 6 lb mixed sweet and sour cherries Campden tablets (you can buy these online or sometimes in Gamm Vert) 2 ½ lbs sugar Wine yeast Yeast Nutrient Water Note: Ideally you want a 50/50 mix of sweet and sour cherries. If you don’t have at least 1lb of sour cherries, add the juice and zest of a large lemon to the pulp. Method Remove the stalks from the cherries and rinse. Put into a fermenting bin and crush. An old-fashioned potato masher is great for this. Pour on 4 pints of boiling water. When cool, add 1 Campden tablet, crushed and dissolved in a little warm water. Boil all the sugar in 4 pints of water for 2 or 3 minutes and, when cool, mix into the pulp. Add the yeast and yeast nutrient and cover and allow to ferment for a week, stirring daily. Strain and press and return liquor to a clean fermenting bin. Cover again and leave for 3 or 4 days. Pour through a fine sieve carefully into a gallon jar, leaving as much deposit behind as possible. Fill up the jar with cooled, boiled water to where the neck begins. Fit a fermentation lock and leave until fermentation has finished. Rack, as necessary, adding a Campden tablet after the first racking to stop fermentation. Syphon into bottles. Enjoy!

Companion Planting


ompanion planting is an organic gardening method of growing certain plants in close proximity to reduce pest infestations and improve growth and yield. Depending on the plants in question, it can work on a number of levels: warding off pests (with strong scented plants that repel insects and mask the smell of your more vulnerable plants); luring away pests (with sacrificial plants, more desirable to the pests than your prized plants); attracting beneficial insects (predators and pollinators); improving soil quality; and placing plants appropriately according to their compatibility or incompatibility (with regard to such factors as the spread of disease; provision of shelter from the wind or sun; maximising on growing space; and competition for space, light, water and nutrients). It’s a fascinating subject, with many possible combinations and possibilities, and is a matter close to my heart, being fond of both my potager and organic gardening. As it’s spring, a time when love is in the air, I shall focus, (in this, part one of companion planting – part two in the next edition) on plants that love each other, specifically, delicious crops that grow harmoniously side by side and can be harvested and eaten together, for the ultimate happy pairing.

The Quercy Local • May - June 2018 Please support our advertisers and tell them you saw their advert in The Quercy Local


carrot fly is a ground flyer and won’t fly above three feet. Carrots are especially vulnerable when you are thinning them out, because strong scents are released as you crush the leaves while lifting your seedlings, so make sure your protection is in place by then. Baby carrots are delicious in salads with spring onions, while mature carrots are great in soups and stews with garlic and leeks, so it’s worth successional sowing. Another popular pairing is basil and tomatoes. Basil repels aphids, tomato hornworms and whiteflies, whilst also attracting pollinators such as bees. Tomato and basil are also said to improve each other’s flavour when grown in close proximity, for the ultimate symbiotic relationship. A lesser known pairing is Satureja and broad beans. Satureja montana (winter savory) and Satureja spicigera (creeping savory), both attractive, drought-resistant perennials, often used ornamentally in rock gardens. As strong, aromatic herbs, they effectively camouflage the scent of beans, protecting then from black bean aphid. Like the tomato and basil pairing, this is another herb that is also compatible for flavouring its companion plant. Interestingly, it also has digestive properties which make it useful in reducing some of the less desirable side effects of eating beans! Furthermore, it has antiseptic qualities, and a sprig of Satureja rubbed onto a bee or wasp sting will ease the pain. To further strengthen your broad bean plants, it is also advisable to pinch out the growing tips, which will not only encourage the plant to put is energy into producing flowers and bean pods, but will also further deter black fly. Don’t waste the tips though – they are delicious eaten lightly steamed or sautéed as a delicate leaf vegetable, with a sprinkling of Satureja!

Many pests in the potager are flying insects, who locate their host-plants by smell, with each variety of pest being attracted to the scent of the specific plants on which it feeds. By growing strong-scented plants around your vulnerable crops, you throw the pests off the scent. The insects need to make appropriate landings, on their target plants, in order to lay their eggs. Inappropriate landings, on unsuitable plants, result in them leaving the area in search of suitable plants elsewhere. As insects prefer to land on plants rather than bare earth, an isolated crop will be an easier target, while any form of additional planting increases the insects’ difficulty with targeting, and the stronger the scent, the greater the degree of difficulty. A well known companion pairing is spring onions with carrots, as the onions (or any other alliums, such as garlic or leeks) will deter carrot root fly. Mesh placed around the bed, or raising the bed, is also an effective protection, as

John and Debbie (Le Jardin des Espiemonts) 06 44 23 73 65 lejardindesespiemonts

Published March, May, July, September and December each year The Quercy Local • May - June 2018


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WIN A PAIR OF TICKETS FOR THIS SUMMER’S PERFORMANCE Win one of 6 pairs of front-row tickets to any Antic Disposition performance of Much Ado About Nothing during their tour of Périgord & Quercy this summer. Simply answer this question – using the contact form on this magazine’s website. Q. Name a member of the British Royal Family that shares a first name with one of Much Ado About Nothing’s key characters? Answers by the noon on the July 10th and 6 winners

will be drawn randomly from the correct entries.

PISCINES • Conception et realisation de piscines • Spas, Sauna, Hamman

BÂTIMENT GÉNÉRAL • Restauration de bâtiments • Constructions de bâtiments • Assainissement et recuperation d’eau • Amènagements extérieurs

TENNIS • Réalisation et renovation


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The Quercy Local Issue 33 May - June 2018  

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

The Quercy Local Issue 33 May - June 2018  

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