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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Welcome! to Issue 27 of

‘The DeuxSèvres Monthly’ magazine.

Phew!    What  a  busy  month  it’s  been.    As  well  as   the  usual  tasks  to   create  this  issue,  we  also  have   successfully   launched   our   new   magazine   ‘The   Vendée   Monthly’!     It’s   been   hard   work,   but   I   hope  it   will  provide  the  Vendée  (department  85)   with  an  invaluable  resource  as  it  does  to  you   all   here  in  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres. On  the  weather  front,  it  seems  that  we  may  finally  have  our   Spring,   even  if  a  little  delayed.     It’s  long  awaited  and  I  am  currently  planning  the   potted  plants   for   our   Summer  terrace  and  may  even  try  some   salad   items  in  pots  this  year  too  -­‐  time  allowing! There  are  a  number  of  Bank  Holidays  this  month  and  many  events  going   on  in  and  around  our  department...so  whatever  you  choose  to  do,  I   hope  you  have  a  lovely  time.

à plus, Sarah.

Email: info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or Tel: 05 49 70 26 21 website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

Emergency Numbers: 15 SAMU, Medical 17 Gendarmes, Police 18 Pompiers, Fire

112 European emergency 113 Drugs and alcohol

CONTENTS

What’s  On.....................................................................................4 Hobbies,  Clubs  &  Associations.....................................................6 Getting  Out  &  About....................................................................7 Take  a  Break...............................................................................15 A-­‐Z  of  the  Communes  in  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres.................................16 Health,  Beauty  &  Fitness............................................................17 Our  Furry  Friends.......................................................................19 The  Great  Outdoors...................................................................21 French  Life,  Food  &  Drink...........................................................25 French  Adventures.....................................................................28 Motoring....................................................................................29 Communications........................................................................32 Building  &  Renovation...............................................................34 Business,  Finance  &  Property.....................................................40

THIS  MONTH’S  ADVERTISERS   79  Renovations.....................................................................................................37 A2B  Food  Services............................................................................................... 26 A  La  Bonne  Vie  (Restaurant)................................................................................ 27 Abattage  Service  (Slaughter  House-­‐Poultry)....................................................... 26 Ace  Pneus  (Tyre  Supplier  &  Fitter)...................................................................... 29 Affordable  UK  Designs  (Kitchens  &  UPVC  D/Glazing)......................................... 2 AKE  Petits  Travaux  (Builder)................................................................................ 36 Alan  Pearce  (Plumbing  &  Heating)..................................................................... 39 Andrew  Longman  (Plumber)............................................................................... 39 An  English  Nursery  in  France  (Garden  Centre).................................................... 23 A.P.S.  Automobiles  (FORD  Garage)...................................................................... 30 ARB  French  Property............................................................................................ 45 Arbrecadabra.com  (Tree  surgery)........................................................................ 23 Assurances  Maucourt  /  GAN............................................................................... 42 Belle  Maison  (Construction  &  Cleaning  Services)............................................... 35 Blevins  Franks  Financial  Management  Ltd.......................................................... 40 Blue  Bicycle  B&B  /  Chambre  d’Hôtes.................................................................. 44 Brasserie  Vue  du  Château.................................................................................... 9 British  Mobile  Mechanic  (John  Purchase)........................................................... 31 Brits  Bitz............................................................................................................... 9 Buzay  Auto  (British/French  Car  Sales)................................................................ 29

...continued.   Café  des  Belles  Fleurs.......................................................................................... 27 Caniclôture  (Hidden  fencing)............................................................................... 19 Centre  de  Beauregard.......................................................................................... 8 Charente  Hair  &  Make-­‐up................................................................................... 17 Chris  Bassett  Construction.................................................................................. 36 Christies  (English  Book  Shop  and  Tea  Room)...................................................... 8 Currencies  Direct  (Money  Transfers)................................................................... 41 Cut  46  (Hair  Salon).............................................................................................. 18 Cyane  Electronic  Water  Conditioners................................................................. 43 Dave  Bowring  (Electrician).................................................................................. 34 Dave  Rosenberg  (Carpenter  &  Joiner)................................................................ 35 David  Cropper  (Stump  Grinding  &  Jungle  Busting)............................................ 23 DJ  Jeff  (Professional  DJ)....................................................................................... 14 D  J  Maintenance  (Handyman)............................................................................ 34 Electricien  Anglais  en  France.............................................................................. 34 Energie-­‐79........................................................................................................... 39 Equi  Libre  Immobilier........................................................................................... 47 Gardening  &  Cleaning  Services  (Dean  Smalley).................................................. 46 Gardens  &  Stuff.................................................................................................... 21 George  Rayner  Computers.................................................................................. 33 Give  the  Dog  a  Comb  (Dog  Grooming)............................................................... 19 GL  Joinery............................................................................................................. 35 Glass  2  France...................................................................................................... 36 Hallmark  Electronique  (Electricians  &  Sat.  Engineers)........................................ 34 Heather’s  Pet  Care  Services................................................................................ 19 Homes  In  France  (Tony  Murdoch)....................................................................... 47 Insink  Plumbing................................................................................................. .. 39 Keith  Hall  Renovations......................................................................................... 37 James  Harris  (Plasterer)....................................................................................... 35 John  Snee  (Groundworks  &  Septic  Tanks)........................................................... 38 John  Spray  Maçonnerie  (Stonemason)............................................................... 36 Jon  Crocker  Photography..................................................................................... 21 La  Deuxieme  Chance  (Annie  Sloan  chalk  paint  supplier).................................... 37 L’Étable  Gastronomique  (Restaurant)................................................................. 25 Leggett  Immobilier.............................................................................................. 46 Les  Bons  Voisins................................................................................................... 45 Le  Logis  (Rare  Breed  Pigs).................................................................................... 26 Le  Petit  Cadeau.................................................................................................... 7 Le  Petit  Logis  (B&B  and  Chambre  d’Hotes)......................................................... 44 Loulesbelles  (Dêpot  Vente  clothing)................................................................... 7 Man  &  Van  (Keith  McNie).................................................................................... 30 Mad  Hatter’s  Kitchen.......................................................................................... 25 Mark  Sabestini  Renovation  &  Construction........................................................ 36 MB  Plumbing  &  Building  Services....................................................................... 39 MCH  Groundworks/Construction....................................................................... 38 Michael  Glover  (Plasterer,  Renderer  &  Tiler)...................................................... 35 Michael  Hobson  (Painter  &  Decorator)............................................................... 37 ML  Computers..................................................................................................... 33 Mutuelle  de  Poitiers  Assurances......................................................................... 30 Nathan  Foster  Building  Services.......................................................................... 36 Needa  Hand  Services........................................................................................... 34 Pamela  Irving  (Massage  &  Reflexology).............................................................. 17 Pascale  Matéo  (French  Lessons)......................................................................... 10 Pascale  Terry  (French  Lessons)............................................................................ 10 Philip  Irving  (Mini  Digger  hire)............................................................................. 38 Phil  Savage  (General  House  Repairs).................................................................. 37 Poitou  Property  Services..................................................................................... 46 Polar  Express  (Frozen  Foods).............................................................................. 26 Premier  Autos  (Mechanic).................................................................................. 29 Recycled  Cardboard  Workshops......................................................................... 8 Reflets  de  campagne........................................................................................... 7 Restaurant  des  Canards....................................................................................... 25 Rob  Berry  (Plasterer)........................................................................................... 2 Ross  Hendry  (Interface  Consulting  &  Engineering)............................................. 32 Sandy  G  (Hairdresser).......................................................................................... 17 Satellite  TV  (Nigel  Gubb)...................................................................................... 33 sarl  Down  to  Earth  (Groundwork  &  Construction)............................................. 37 Segora  Writing  Competitions.............................................................................. 11 Sentinel  Security  Systems.................................................................................... 44 Siddalls  (Financial  Advisors)................................................................................. 41 Simon  Bienz  (Carpenter  /  Joiner)........................................................................ 35 Simon  The  Tiler.................................................................................................... 35 Spectrum  IFA  Group  (Amanda  Johnson)............................................................. 42 Steve  Enderby...................................................................................................... 37 Sue  Burgess  (French  Courses  &  Translation)....................................................... 10 The  English  Mechanic  &  Son  -­‐  Tony  Eyre............................................................ 31 The  Market.......................................................................................................... 8 Total  Renovation  Services  (Michael  Dominey)................................................... 37 Tracey  Bowring  (Hairdressing  &  Nails)................................................................ 17 Trisha  Mobile  Hairdresser................................................................................... 18 Steve  Reid  (Building  &  Renovation)..................................................................... 2 Vendée  Houses.................................................................................................... 7 Vendée  Pools....................................................................................................... 48

©  Sarah  Berry   2013.     All   rights  reserved.    Material   may   not   be   reproduced  without  permission.    While   care   is   taken  to  ensure  that  articles  and  features  are  accurate,  Sarah   Berry   accepts  no  liability   for   reader  dissatisfaction.     The   opinions  expressed   and  experiences   shared  are   given  by  individual   authors  and  do  not  necessarily  represent  the   views  or  opinions  of  the  publisher.    Please  ensure  you  verify  that  the  company  you  are  dealing  with  is  a  registered  trading  company  in  France  and/or  elsewhere. <<The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly>>  est  édité  par  Sarah  Berry,   La  Bartière,   79130,   Secondigny.   Tél:   05  49  70   26  21.    Directeur  de  la  publication  et  rédacteur  en  chef:  Sarah  Berry.   Crédits  photos:  Sarah  Berry,   Clkr   et   morgeufile.com.  Impression:  Raynaud  Imprimeurs,  zone  industrielle,  BP13,  79160,  Coulonges-­‐sur-­‐l’Autize.    Dépôt  légal:  mai  2013  -­‐  Tirage:  5000  exemplaires.    Siret:  515  249  738  00011  ISSN:  2115-­‐4848

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

What’s On... May 2013 28th  April  to  5th  May  -­‐  Music  in  the  Gatîne  Music  Festival 4th  May,  6.30pm  and  8.30pm  in  Airvault  Museum:  Schubertiades  1  &  2 5th  May,  Collégiale   de  St  Marc  la  Lande  at   17h:Damien  Guillon  and   the  Banquet  Céleste. 1st  May  -­‐  Jardiniers  du  Paradis Plant/flower  show  in  Champdeniers  79220  from  9.30am-­‐6pm Free  entry.  Drinks  and  food  on  sale. 2nd  May  -­‐  Fresco  Interiors  Shop  Opening At  9  rue  du  duc  D’Aquitaine,  Vouvant.  Call  02  51  50  77  41  for  details. 2nd  May  -­‐  Top  Hat  Quiz  &  Curry  at  Chef  Boutonne See  www.tophatquizzes.com  for  more  information. 3rd  May  -­‐  Phoenix  Cards  &  Gifts. New  Spring  brochure   available,  4-­‐6pm  at   the  Tipsy  Bar,  Coulonges-­‐ sur-­‐l'Autize.   For   a   catalogue   or   info   about   joining   the   Phoenix   team,  contact  Della  James  05  49  05  78  61. 3rd  May  -­‐  Music  /  Bistro  Night At  Mad  Hatter’s  Kitchen  with  Route  403.  See  advert  on  P.25  for  details. 4th  &  5th  May  -­‐  ‘Hyper  Vide  Grenier’  and  Refreshments At   Faylle,  St  Saviol,   near   Civray  from   9am   -­‐   4pm.  All   proceeds  to   ‘Enfants  de  la   Rue’.  For   info  or  donations   of   goods,  please  phone   Philip  or  Sue  on  05  49  97  12  45. 5th  May  -­‐  Canal  Creepers  New  Orleans  Jazz  Band  Apero  Concert In  Coulonges-­‐sur-­‐l’autize  at  6pm. 5th  May  -­‐  Cerizay  Male  Voice  Choir  Concert At  the  Church  St  Maurice  des  Noues,  La  Chataigneraie  at  3pm. 6th  May  -­‐  Top  Hat  Quiz  &  Curry  at  Limalonges See  www.tophatquizzes.com  for  more  information. 8th  May  -­‐  Top  Hat  Quiz  &  Curry  at  Aigre See  www.tophatquizzes.com  for  more  information. 9th  May  -­‐  Top  Hat  Quiz  &  Curry  at  Champniers See  www.tophatquizzes.com  for  more  information. 10th  May  -­‐  Gourmet  Evening,  5  Course  Taster  Menu At  A  La  Bonne  Vie  restaurant,  Le  Beugnon.    See  advert  on  P.27. 12th  May  -­‐  Clear  Your  Clutter  for  Charity At  Paperback  Jan’s,  La  Ferriere-­‐sur-­‐Parthenay.  See  advert  on  P.5 15th  May  -­‐  Kiddies  Craft  Morning At  The  Market,  Luché  sur  Brioux.  See  advert  on  P.8. 17th  May  -­‐  Parthenay  Jazz  Festival  starts  ! Find  details  on  P.16. 18th  May  -­‐  Live  Music  with  Nigel At  Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux,  8.30pm.    See  advert  on  P.27. 20th  May  -­‐  Foire  de  l'Antan   Traditional  fair  with  a  small   market,   vide  greniers  and  brocante.  At   Salle   des  Fetes,     86250  Chatain   from  7am   -­‐  5pm. Bar   and  snacks   available  from  12  noon. 21st  May  -­‐  Help  with  French  Tax  Returns Val  Assist  will  be  available  in  the  private  room  at  Pause!  Café,  L’Absie   from  10am  -­‐  5pm  for  help  completing  tax  forms. 22nd  May  -­‐  Book  &  Coffee  Morning At  45  rue  du  Bois  Baudron,  Mauze  Thouarsais,  from  10am-­‐12.30pm. 24  /  25  /  26th  May  -­‐  Hope  Book  Sale At  Salle  des  Fetes,  Clussais  la  Pommeraie  79190.    See  P.19  for  details. 24th  May  -­‐  Mother’s  Day  Special  Quiz  with  Cheryl Curry  meal  available.    Please  see  advert  on  P.27. 25th  May  -­‐  Theatre  Chabanais  Summer  Show “Behind   The  Secenes”   A   collection   of   short   plays   to   amuse   and   entertain.  At  Salle  fes  Fêtes,  Chabanais,  8pm.  Please  contact  Penny   Gorridge  for  more  details.  Tel:  05  45  94  10  71. 26th  May  -­‐  Fêtes  des  Meres  (Mother’s  Day) 28th  &  29th  May  -­‐  Taiji  Workshop With  20th   generation  Master   CHEN   Ziqiang   in   Bressuire.     Please   see  website:  www.chentaiji-­‐fr.com  for  details. 29th  May  -­‐  PC  Course  “What  Can  Google  Do  For  You?” At  Pause!  Café,  L’Absie.  Please  contact  Ross  on  rs.hendry@gmail.com 31st  May  to  2nd  June  -­‐  Rendez-­‐vous  aux  Jardins Visit   the   many   Open   Gardens   in   your   area.   For   more   information   please  see  details  on  P.22. 31st  May  -­‐  Uckfield  Brass  Band  &  Grand  BBQ At  Restaurant  des  Canards.    Please  see  ad  P.25.

What’s Coming Up...

1st  June  -­‐  New  Shop  opening  in  L’Absie La  Petite  Épicière  opens  its  doors.  See  advert  P.9. 1st  &  2nd  June:  Exhibition  of  Lace  and  Embroidery. At  the  Salle  at  Soulièvres,  Airvault.    See  details  on  P.9. 8th  June  -­‐  Segora  Writing  Competition  Deadline See  article  on  P.11.  for  details. 9th  June  -­‐  Summer  Market Organised   by   Aidez   Association.   To   be   held   at   St   Germain-­‐de-­‐ Longue-­‐Chaume.    See  P.5  for  information.

Monthly  services  at  the  English  speaking  Church  in  Deux-­‐Sèvres Jassay The  Chaplaincy  of  Christ  the  Good  Shepherd,  Poitou-­‐Charentes,     has  a  Home  Group   Service  at  Jassay    commencing  at  11.00am  on   every  2nd  Sunday  in  the  month.   It   is   held  at   the   home  of  Ann   White,  where   a   warm  welcome   awaits   everyone  for   a   time   of   worship  and  fellowship. St Leger Church  Services  on  the  1st  Sunday  of  each  month  at  10.30am   at   St   Leger   near   Melle   starting  its   summer   season   from  May  5th.   After  each   service  tea   or   coffee   is  served  and  an   opportunity  to   meet  other  people  in  the  area. Parthenay The  Chaplaincy  of  Christ   the   Good  Shepherd,  Poitou-­‐Charentes,   also  holds  services  on   the  4th   Sunday  of  each   month  at  10.30am   in  the  Presbytery  Rooms,  rue  de  la  Citadelle,  Parthenay,  opposite   St   Croix  Church.  After   each   service,  tea   or   coffee  is   served  and   everyone  is  invited  to  a  'bring  and  share'  lunch. For   further   informacon   about   locacon   of   churches   and   about   what   else   is   happening   near   you,   please   take   a   look   at   our   website   www.church-­‐in-­‐france.com   or   contact   us   at   office.goodshepherd@orange.fr

The National Holidays, Religious and Feast Days 2013 Wednesday  1st  May.......... Wednesday  8th  May......... Thursday  9th  May............. Sunday  19th  May.............. Monday  20th  May............. Sunday  14th  July............... Thursday  15th  August....... Friday  1st  November......... Monday  11th  November... Wednesday  25th  December.

Labour  Day (Fête  du  travail) Victory  in  Europe  Day  (Fête  de  la  Victoire) Ascension  Day (Ascension) Pentacost (Pentecôte) Pentacost (Lundi  de  Pentecôte) Naconal  Day  (Fête  Na=onale  de  France) Assumpcon  of  Mary (Assomp=on) All  Saint’s  Day (Toussaint) Armiscce  Day  (Armistace  1918) Christmas  Day  (Noël)

Contact  ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY                                                                                                

                                                                           

Paperback  Jan Books  in  English

1st  May:     Café  Cour  du  Miracle,  Vouvant  85120.  2.30pm-­‐4.30pm 2nd  May:    Bar  le  Palais,  St  Aubin  le  Cloud  79450  2pm  -­‐  5pm 2nd  May:    Bar  La  Cabane  de  Vouhé,  Vouhé  79310.  6.30pm  -­‐  8pm* 3rd  May:     Bar  de  la  Paix,  Thouars  79100.    12pm  -­‐  2pm 3rd  May:     Le  Tipsy  Bar,  Coulonges-­‐sur-­‐l’Autize  79160.  4pm  -­‐  6pm 5th  May:     Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux  79160.  2pm  -­‐  4pm 11th  May:  Cafe  Le  Chauray,  St  Maixent  l’Ecole  79400.  10am  -­‐  1pm 12th  May:    Jan’s  home,  La  Ferrière-­‐en-­‐Parthenay.  11am  -­‐  4pm 16th  May:    Pause!  Cafe,  L’Absie  79240.    2pm-­‐  5pm 31st  May:     Le  P’tit  Bar  Boucard,  Ménigoute  79340.    4pm  -­‐  6pm *+  Quiz  &  Fish  and  Chips

For  more  info  contact  Jan  on: 06  08  30  73  29  or  email:  paperbackjan@gmail.com

Mr T’s Friterie

Open 6.30

-9pm

With regular venues at:

                             F    oire  (27th  month) • Aulnay    (Open  from  6pm)        •          Rouillac   • Gourville                     • St  Hilaire  de  Villefranche • Loulay • St  Jean  d’Angély • Matha

See  www.frying2nite.com  for  details  or  call  06  02  22  44  74

Reel Fish & Chips Traditional English style Fish & Chips

Weds 1st May -  The Canteen, Etusson Friday 3rd May -  Bar Tabac, Bouille-Loretz Sunday 12th May -La Ferrière-en-Parthenay Weds 15th May - The Canteen, Etusson Thurs 16th May - St Martin de Sanzay Friday 17th May -  Bar Tabac, Genneton Sunday 19th May - L’Absie

18H30 - 21H00 18H30 - 21H00 12H00 - 14H30 18H30 - 21H00 18H30 - 21H00 18H30 - 21H00 18H30 - 22H00

Tel: 06 04 14 23 94, or visit: www.reelfishandchips.net

SUMMER MARKET SUNDAY JUNE 9th

Organised by Aidez Association (Terves)

Open 6-8p

Fish 4 Chip Fish, Chips & mushy peas!

m

Mondays: Bar Tilleuls, Champniers (near Civray) Tuesdays: Sauzé-Vaussais (Main square & can be eaten in local bar) Wednesdays: Chef Boutonne (near Chateau) Thursdays: Sauzé-Vaussais - Lunchtime & Evening. (Main square & can be eaten in local bar) Fridays: Mansle (Car park of Simply Supermarket) Tel: 06 37 53 56 20, or visit: www.mobilefishandchipsfrance.com

Salles des Fetes St Germain-de-Longue-Chaume Open from 1pm - 6pm Good variety of 30 plus stalls Red White and Blue, Plants, Honey, Iceland Frozen foods, Books, Curry experience, RBL with Tombola, Ceramic Pots, Avon, Jewellery, Bags, Cake Stall and Refreshment area. Money raised will benefit local French Charities

"

Please  don’t  forget  to  mention ‘The Deux-Sèvres Monthly’ when  responding  to  an  advert.

Entrance, Free of Charge

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Hobbies, Clubs & Associations... Book  Club  Thouars.    Do  you  enjoy  reading  a  cracking  good  story?   And  talking  to  others  about  it?  Do  you  live  in  north  79,  south  49   or  north  86?  Come  along  to  our  book  club..... Contact  Alison  Morton  at  info@bookclubthouars.fr  for  more  details.

Cycling  Group Do  you  enjoy  cycling?     I  am  a  keen  cyclist  and  looking   for   others   to   meet   up   with   me   for   outings   once   or   twice  a  week.    Purely  for  leisure  and  very  informal  with   a  coffee  stop  en  route.  I  live  at  Pamplie,  near  Secondigny. Contact:    steve.coupland@hotmail.com    /  05  49  28  24  06

Cancer Support in Deux-Sèvres

Cancer support aims to improve the lives Of people affected by cancer. Don’t worry alone, pick up the phone. For Further information contact: June Searchfield: Tel: 05 49 64 59 96 or email: junesearchfield@gmail.com We are here for you and your Family

Open Door Lending Library Over 7000 fiction and non-fiction books and DVDs Open Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday mornings from 10h00 to midday at 18 rue Pierre Pestureau, Civray (86400) Individual membership 6€, family membership 10€ www.opendoor-civray.com

Book Group....meeting 2nd Thursday of the Alone  in  France? We  are  a  group  of  people  living  alone   in  the   L'Absie  area  who  meet   regularly  for  coffee  and  lunches.    We   meet   on  the  1st  and  3rd  Tuesdays  at  11am   for  coffee  at  the  Pause  cafe  in   L'Absie.    Our  lunches  are  at  different  venues  each  month.  There's  a   warm  welcome  if  you'd  like  to  join  us.   More  details  from  Frank  05  49  69  80  47.

Franglais  Thouars The   Thouars   ‘Franglais’   group   meets   every   Wednesday   from   19.30h   to   21.00h,   in   the   Association’s   centre   at   7   rue   Anne   Desrays,  Thouars,  for  conversation  in  English  and  French. We   welcome   those   of   all   nationalities   who   would   like   to   participate.  Either  come  along  to  see  us  one  evening,  or  contact  us   at:  Mobile:    06  52  21  92  34  ~  Email:    jcbed@orange.fr

Association Meridien Green We   are   an   Anglo-­‐French   group   which   was   founded   in   2001   for   mutual   understanding   of   each   other's   language   and   culture.   We   meet   twice   weekly   in   the   Salle   des   Associations   in   St   Coutant,   79120.     The   best   way   to   find   out   more   is   to   visit   our   website   -­‐   www.meridiengreen.asso.fr  or  contact  Maureen  Dalby:   05  49  29  94  50.  The  name   of  our  group  comes  from   the  fact  that  St   Coutant  is  on  the  Greenwich  Meridian! Le   Tallud   Boules   en   bois   are   offering   sessions   every   Wednesday   from   16h   to  18h   from  April  through  to  September   2013  at   the  parc   de   Loisirs,   Le   Tallud.    Everyone  is  welcome  to   come   and   play   or   learn   the   game   of   boules   en   bois.   We  have  all  the  equipment,  just   turn   up   for   half   an   hour   or   more   for   a   bit   of   exercise   and   socialising.   Details   from   Rosemary   Williamson   rw.williamson@orange.fr

The Harmonics   Singing   Group.   Based   in   the   Salle  

d'Annexe  behind  the  mairie  in  Civray.  We  meet  each  Wednesday  from   2.00pm   to  4.00pm.   No   experience   necessary   just   a   willingness   and   commitment   to   learn.   We   sing   all   sorts   of   music   and   in   several   languages,  whatever   the  music  dictates.  We   are   a  small   and  friendly   group  who  would  love  to  meet  you. Contact:  Dolly  Ait  Boualou:  05  45  22  89  32  or  sylvia.murray@wanadoo.fr   or  Margaret  Gomersall  on  05  49  48  09  02  or  margaretgomersall@sfr.fr Through the Lens Group Local photography group meets on the last Monday in each month to chat about all things photography! New members welcome. For further information contact: Ian Gawn: 02 51 00 84 52 or Brian Preece: 05 49 72 09 94

month from 3pm at Christies Tea Room & Bookshop, Gençay, 86160. Take a look at the Book Group page on the website: www.chezchristies.com for more information. The  Filling  Station  ~  Poitou-­Charentes The   Filling   Station   is   a   network   of   local   Christians   of   all   denominations   who   meet   together   regularly   for   spiritual   renewal  &  evangelism  purposes.    ALL  WELCOME. Please  see  our  website  for  details  of  meetings  and  spring   programmes  www.the=illingstation.org.uk  or  locally  contact   05  49  87  18  58  or  email:michael.willis@sfr.fr Next  Meeting:  9th  May,  Chef  Boutonne  79110.

2nd Sunday Motorcycle Club www.2ndsundayclub.fr If you would like to attend our coffee mornings please contact us via the website........New members always welcome! Rubber Bridge:would any of you bridge players out there in the Deux-Sèvres, be interested in making up an occasional 4? Email David Rowe: djfrowe@hotmail.com or' phone 05 49 63 26 57.

Les Amis Solitaires We  are  a  group  of  people   living  alone  in  France.    We  meet  up   for   coffee  mornings  from  11am. 1st  Tuesday:  The  Gallery,  Civray  (coinciding  with  market  day). Every  2nd  &  4th  Thursday,  The  Lemon  Tree,  Sauzé  Vaussais. Every  3rd  Thursday,  Le  Bistrot  Centrale  in  Ruffec.     More   details   from   Gwen   Shepherd   05   49   87   91   79   or   email   gwanshep@gmail.com A R E  Y O U A M O D E L R A I L W A Y ENTHUSIAST? If so, join a group of likeminded modellers who meet on a monthly basis to visit members' layouts and swap information. We are based on the DeuxSevres/Vendee border but also have members in the Vienne and Charente. If you are interested please contact Gerry Riley for more information on 05 49 63 34 01. Secondigny Running Club... Put the bounce back in your step. Join our friendly and supportive running group. All abilities welcome. Email Kelly for more details: kellyencezelle@hotmail.co.uk

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Getting Out & About...

“Thank You”

says  

After  three  happy  and   very  interesting  years,  ‘La  Joie  De  Vivre’  in   Moncoutant  has   closed  its  doors.     Margaret  &  Terry  would  like  to   take  this  opportunity  to  thank   all  their  customers,  some  of  whom   have  become  good  friends,  for  their  support  and  to  wish  everyone   well   for   the   future.     Also   to   thank   Paperback   Jan   for   her   jolly   afternoon  gatherings. Particularly  huge   &  sincere  thanks  must  go  to  Richard  &  Chris  and   Ian  &  Sandra  who  were  complete  stalwarts  &  utterly  brilliant  when   called  in  at  the   last  minute  to  help  Margaret  close  down  and  clear   the  shop   after   Terry  was   taken  ill   &  hospitalised.     Sandra  &  Chris   catalogued   &   packed   all   the   stock  most   efficiently   (I  don’t   think   Chris  will  ever  want  to  see  any  more  bubble  wrap  or  sticky  tape!!)   whilst   Richard   &  Ian   made   light   work  of   dismantling,  loading   &   unloading.    All  very  happy  workmates  &  so  very  much  appreciated.   Very   best   wishes   go   to   Ali   &   Colin   Millin   too,   with   their   new   venture  ‘Fresco   Interiors’  at   the  Citadelle   in  Vouvant,   where  some   of  the  locally  made  crafts  La  Joie  de  Vivre  sold,  can  now  be  found. Onwards   &   upwards   and   after   their   house   move   last   year,   this   summer   will   see  Terry  &  Margaret  gardening,  painting  and  taking   time  out  to  visit  people  &  places.     They  would  love  to  wish  you  all  a  wonderful  summer.  

A bientot.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Horse & Dog Fun Show Following   the   success   of   our   previous   summer  Horse  and  Dog  shows,  we  will  host   our  5th  annual  show  on  Sunday  28th  July.                 We  have  on   offer   Pedigree  and   Novelty  dog   classes  –  this   year   they  will  be  split  between   the  morning  and  afternoon.    For   the  equines   there  is  Working  Hunter,  Show  Hunter,  Driving   and   Fun   showing   classes,   and   once   again   these  are  spread  throughout  the  day. There  will  be  hot  and  cold  refreshments,  including  a  bar,  plus  homemade  cakes,  homemade   ice  cream  and  a  BBQ  serving  burgers,  hot  dogs  and  bacon  butties  for  the  early  birds. There  will  again  be  an   abundance  of  stall-­‐holders   selling  their  wares   and  anyone  wishing  to   have  a  stall  can  contact  Jacki.    We  have  displays  organised  at  lunchtime  to  entertain  you  and   we  will   have  a  saddler  on  hand  to  do  on   the  spot  repairs  and  fittings.     It  is  our  aim  to  make   an  enjoyable  family  day  out   whether   you  have  a  four  legged  friend  or  not,  so  please  come   along  and  enjoy  the  ambiance  of  a  relaxed  day  amongst  friends  new  and  old. If  distance   is   a  bit   of   an  issue  then  why  not   book  into   our  chambre  d’hote  where  stabling  is   also  available  and  where  you  and  horse  will  be  given  a  warm  welcome  –  make  a  weekend  of   it. Where  things  have  not  worked  in  the  past  we  always  aim  to  improve  and  where  things  have  succeeded  we  leave  well  alone.     Details  of   this   year’s  schedule  will  soon  be  available  on  our  website  www.centredebeauregard.com Should  you  wish  to  be  involved  in   the  show   in  anyway  other  than  as  a  competitor,  don’t   be  shy,  or  if  you  would  like  to  have  a  stall  at  our   show    get  in  touch  with  Jacki  on  05  49  87  05  59  or  email:  JackiBeauregard@aol.com    or  contact  via  the  website.

PLACE OF INTEREST...79500 MELLE

Cover  Photograph  by  Jon  Crocker  shows  l’Église  Saint-­‐Savinien  in  Melle. The  town   of  Melle  was   founded   in  the  reign  of  Charlemagne  as  a  mining  centre  and  was,   for   a  time,  the  home  of  the  French  mint.    The   mines  which  supplied  the  mint  continued   to  function  off  and  on  before  being  forgotten  altogether  in  the  18th  century,  not  to   be  discovered   again  until  the  20th  century.    The  mine  is  now  a  tourist  attraction  and  can  be  visited  most  days  of  the  year. In   the   Middle   Ages,   Melle  flourished   as  a  town   as  we   can  see   from  its   surviving   medieval   houses  and   the   three  churches,   built   in   the   Romanesque  style  during  the  11th  and  12th  centuries. Page 8


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Airvault's  second  Lace  and  Embroidery   Exhibition  will   be   held   at   Soulièvres  hall   on  the  1st  and  2nd  June  2013. The   exhibition   will   be   open   to   the   p u b l i c   from  2pm  -­‐   7pm  on  the  Saturday  and  from  10am  -­‐  6pm  on   the   Sunday.    There  will  be  exhibitions  of  lacework  and   embroidery,   and  demonstrations  of  different  techniques.    Visitors  will  also   be   able  to  learn  about  silk  worm  breeding.    The  special  guests  of  the   exhibition  will  be  the  lace  makers  from  Bobowa  in  Poland.   There   will   be  stands   selling  material,   threads,   frames,   scissors   and  many  other  things.    Entry  to  the  exhibition  will  be  2  Euros.

Local Markets • • Tuesdays: • • • Wednesdays: • Thursdays: • • Fridays: • • Saturdays: • • • • • Sundays: • Mondays:

Benet 85490 Lencloître (1st Monday in month) 86140 Lezay 79120 Coulonges-sur-l’Autize 79160 Thouars 79100 Parthenay 79200 Sauzé-Vaussais 79190 Niort 79000 Thouars 79100 Melle 79500 Chef-Boutonne 79110 Airvault 79600 Niort 79000 Coulon 79510 Saint-Maixent-l’École 79400 Neuville-de-Poitou 86170

Photo: Lisa Roberts

ARC  en  Fils

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Ups and Downs

by  Sue  Burgess

Vocabulary  /  Vocabulaire  :  Expressions  with  monter  and  descendre

The  French  verb  «monter»  literally  means  "to   go  up"  but  the  verb   is  also  used  in   many  idiomatic  expressions  and  has  many  different   possible   meanings:   to   go   up,   to   assemble,   to   climb   up/into,  to   board,  to  edit,  to  mount,   to   organize,  to   set   up,  to  put  up,  to  rise,   to  stage,  to  take  up  or  to  turn  up  (the  volume).

monter  des  mailles                                            

to  cast  on  stitches

monter  en  courant      

to  run  upstairs

monter  en  flèche        

to  soar  (literally  and  figuratively)

In  the  passé   composé  past  tense,  when  used   with  «être»  it  means   to   go   up.     «Je   suis   monté»   (I   went   upstairs),   «je   suis   monté   à   Paris»  (I  went  up  to  Paris).  

monter  en  grade        

to  be  promoted

monter  le  son              

to  turn  the  volume  up

When  used  with  a  direct  object,  it  needs    «avoir».    «J'ai  monté  une   étagère   dans   la   salle   de   bains»   (I   put   up   a   shelf   unit   in   the   bathroom).  «J'ai   monté   un  spectacle  avec  les  enfants»  (I  put  on   a   show  with  the  children).

monter  sur  le  trône                    

to  ascend  to  the  throne

monter  un  coup    

to  plan  a  job

Ça  fait  monter  les  prix.

It  makes  prices  go  up.

C'est  un  artiste  qui  monte

He's  an  up-­‐and-­‐coming  artist.

The   French   expression   «à   l'étage»   can   mean   "upstairs"   or   "downstairs,"  depending  on  what   it  is  used  with.    «À  l'étage»  on  its   own  means  "upstairs,"  and  it   can  also  refer  specifically  to  the  upper   floor  of  a  two-­‐story  building.    In  France,   this  is  also  known   as  «le   premier   étage»  (in  the  UK,  "the  first   floor",  in  the  US,  "the  second   floor"). !   But   be   careful   as   different   words   can  be   added   which   make   it   mean  "downstairs": • «à  l'étage  du  dessus  /  à  l'étage  au-­‐dessus»  -­‐   upstairs,  on  the  floor  above • «à  l'étage  du  dessous  /  à  l'étage  en-­‐dessous»  -­‐   downstairs,  on  the  floor  below

faire  monter  des  blancs  en  neige     to   beat   egg   whites   into   stiff   peaks Je  monte  la  garde  (sign)        

Beware  of  dog

La  moutarde  me  monte  au  nez.      

I'm  losing  my  temper.

Descendre  en  rappel    

to  abseil

• «monter  à  l'étage»  -­‐  to  go  upstairs • «monter  à  l'étage  supérieure»   -­‐  to   go  up  one  floor,  to   the  next   floor • «monter  au  cinquième  étage»  -­‐  to  go  up  to  the  5th  floor • «descendre  à  l'étage  inférieur»  -­‐  to  go  down  one  floor • «descendre  au  5ème  étage»  -­‐  to  go  down  to  the  5th  floor The  verb  «descendre»  basically  means  to  go  down  or   to   descend.   With   an   object   it   can   mean   to   take   down.   «J'ai   descendu   les   valises»  (I  got  the  suitcases  down),  «Je  descends  le  sapin  de  noël  du   grenier»  (I  get  the  Christmas  tree  down  from  the  attic). Other  meanings  of  «descendre»  are  bring  down,  climb  down,  come   down,   descend,   ebb,   get   down,   get   off   (transport).   «Je   suis   descendu  du  bus  à  la  mairie».  (I  got  off  the  bus  at  the  town  hall).

End

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Writing competitions – why?

ARTicles

by Josie Bounds

by Jocelyn Simms

Jocelyn   and   Gordon   Simms   announce   the   2013   Segora   competitions   for   poetry   and   fiction.   The   deadline   for   all   three   (poetry,  short  story  and  vignette)  is  midnight,  8th  June.   Now   in   its   seventh   year,   Segora   was   launched   to   offer   several   challenges  to  the  writer.    Firstly  is  the  need  to   meet   a  deadline,   thus   overcoming   the   common   problem   of   procrastination.   Secondly,  editing  is  vital  to  perfect  a  piece  for  judging  and  requires   all   the   tools   of   the   trade   -­‐   analysing   syntax,   dipping   into   the   thesaurus,   clipping   the   word   count.   Thirdly,   entries   must   be   professionally  presented,  demanding  concentration  and  computer   skills.  No  wonder   writers   feel   a   sense  of   achievement   when   the   finished  product  is  despatched.  

Is This Cultural Theft? Is  this  cultural  theft?  Throughout  art  history  there  has  been  an  active   interaction   and   dialogue   between   old   and   new.     When   an   artist   borrows  something  familiar  from  a  well-­‐known  image,  does  this  help   the  viewer  to  grasp  the  idea  through  familiarity? Modernism  in   its  broadest   definition  is  modern   thought,  character  or   practice.     More  specifically  the  term  describes  both  a  set   of  cultural   tendencies  and   an  array  of  cultural  movements.     Originally  arising  in   the  late  19th  and  early  20th  century,  Modernism  broke  away  from  the   conservative  values  of  Realism.

Nothing  is  quite  like  the  thrill  of  winning.  While  disappointment   is   unavoidable  for  some,  most  entrants   are  motivated  to   enter  other   competitions  with   different   judges,   themes   and   deadlines  in   the   hope  that  success  will  ultimately  be  theirs.    

A  salient  characteristic  of  modernism  is  self-­‐consciousness.  This  often   led   to   experiments  with  form  and  work   that   drew   attention  to  the   processes   and   materials   used   and   to   the   further   tendency   of   abstraction.

At  one  time  there  were  few  opportunities  where,  for   a  modest  fee,   writers   could   win   prizes,   read   adjudications   and   see   their   work   published.   Recently   international   competitions   have   flourished.   This  may  be  due  to   the  ease  of  accessing  information  and  entering   via   the   internet,   and   the   fact   that   more   people   are  writing  as   a   hobby.     Last   year   winning  Segora  entries  came  from  Eire,  Sweden,   USA,  UK,  France  and  Spain.  All  can  be  read  on  our  website.

This  notion  of  cultural  theft  in  art  is  an  ongoing  tradition  of  referencing   an   interaction   between   images,  a   dialogue  between   old   and   new.     Intertextuality   dissolves   boundaries   between   visual   arts   creating   a   dialogue  where  the  artist   borrows  something  familiar.     Can  the  artists   claim  the  work  as  their  own?     A  parody,  a  piece  of  work  responding   imitating  or  mocking  another   work,  genre   or   style  of   painting.     Not   only   are   parodies   entertaining,   but   they   also   promote   a   greater   understanding  of  the  original  work?

This  year  we  will  hold  a  presentation   of   winning  and  commended   entries   –   an   opportunity   to   enjoy  contemporary   writing   and   to   hear   plans  for   the  next   bilingual   LitFest   in  2014.  Winners   will   be   announced  on  our   website   and   in  ‘The   Deux-­‐Sèvres  and   Vendée   Monthly’  magazines.   Jocelyn  and  Gordon,  both  published  poets,  would  like  to  hear  from   anyone  interested  in  joining  them  for  creative   writing  workshops,   discussions  and  readings.   Contact   Gordon   and   Jocelyn   Simms,   Le   Moulin   de   L’Arche,   79150,  St  Clémenun.  Tel:  05  49  80  22  96.     Email:  gordon.simms@aliceadsl.fr  or    joceynsmms@gmail.com Websites:  www.poetryproseandplays.co.uk   and  www.stclementinlitfest.com

The   post-­‐modernistic   term  became   popular   currency  in   the  1970s,   characterised  by  irony,  appropriation  and  self-­‐reference.  In  particular,   the   movement   uncovered   the   mystical   presence   of   source   ideas,   information  and  influences.     Challenging  the  idea  of   originality,  it  has   also  made  art  inimical  to  straightforward  assumptions  about  the  place   of  the  author   and   the  viewer.   ‘In  postmodernity,  there  is  no  higher   perspective;   all   perspectives   are   leveled   in   the   name   of   ready   accessibility.    There  is  no   possibility  of  an  original  perspective  on  an   unoriginal  world.     All  the  artist  can  do  is  replicate  the  world,  giving  it   a   perverse  twist,  which  is  the  sign  of  subjective  presence.’ As  a  postmodernist  characteristic  appropriation  in  art   is,  to   borrow   and  recycle,  using  composited   elements  in  the  creation   of  the   new   work.  Re-­‐working  old  masters  is  in  fact  a  way  of  synthesising  cultural   observations,  taking  bits  and  pieces,  mixing  and  matching,  making  an   image  that   is  their  own.     The  process  involves  adopting  intellectual   property   from   elsewhere,  who   is   the   author   of   the   image?     Las   Meninas   has   been   used   as   a   source   for   many   images   of   ‘After   Velasquez.’   Appropriation   is  an   important   historical   practice   in   art.     The   creative   effort   is   defined   by   the   idea   with   the   end   strangely   familiar,  however   it’s   an  altogether  new  creation.  Again  we  raise  the   question,  who  is  the  author  of  the  image? There   is   a   rich  seam  of  paintings  which   I  could  have  chosen   from,   however  I  have  chosen  Diego  Velasquez’s:  La  Meninas  (1656–57)  to   demonstrate   the   characteristic   of   appropriation.     Picasso   found   inspiration  in  Velasquez’s  ‘Las  Meninas’  and  produced  a  body  of  work   referencing  the  painting  over  and  over.

Diego  Velasquez:  Las  Meninas,  1656  -­‐  57

Pablo  Picasso:  ‘After  Velasquez.’  1957

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY More  from  local   writer  Alison   Morton...    Please   see  back  issues   of  ‘The  DSM’  if  you  would  like  to  see  previous  articles.

How to Sell More Books: Write More Books! Agatha   Christie’s   bestseller   status  is   no   mystery:   she   wrote   lots   and  lots  of  books.    Any  writer   increases  their  chance   of  becoming   a  bestselling   author   –   and   just   as   importantly,   a  regular   seller   –   just  by  writing  more  books.

How to Write More Books The  key  is  discipline.     Not  the  Fifty  Shades  of  Grey  type,  but  sitting   down,  despite  household   and  life  trivia,  and  writing.    Some  writers   tap   at   their   keyboards  for  a  given  time,  some  have  a   daily  word   target.    It  has  to  become  part  of  your   everyday  routine.    Even  if  it’s   a  snatched  hour  or  thirty  minutes  at   the  beginning   or   end  of  the   working  day,  the  thing  is  to  write  regularly. Happy  writing!

Of   course,   we   all   know   writers   who   have   achieved   literary   immortality  with  a   single   novel,  for   example,  Emily  Brontë   with   Wuthering   Heights,   Harper   Lee   and   To   Kill   A   Mockingbird   and   Margaret  Mitchell   with  Gone  with  the  Wind,  but   it’s  much   easier   to  name  bestselling  authors  who  have  written  multiple  books:  1.   Agatha  Christie  –  85  2.   Barbara  Cartland  –  723  3.   Danielle  Steele  –  120  4.   Harold  Robbins  –  23  5.   Georges  Simenon  –  570  6.   Sidney  Sheldon  –  21  7.   Enid  Blyton  –  800  8.   Dr  Seuss  –  44  9.   Gilbert  Patten  –  209  10.   J  K  Rowling  –  9 (Source:  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-­‐selling_fiction_authors) With  just   nine   books  to  her   name,  J  K  Rowling,  who  we  tend  to   think  of  as   being  an   all-­‐time,  record-­‐breaking   phenomenon,  has   sold   only   350   million   books,  a   fraction   of   the   more   productive   Agatha  Christie’s  total   sales   of  2  billion.    Harold  Robbins  comes  in   at  750  million  and  Danielle  Steele  at  500  million.

Alison  Morton  writes  alternate  history  thrillers,  blogs  about   wriWng  and  Romans  at  hYp://alison-­‐morton.com/blog/  

Quantity   alone   is   not   enough.     A   writer   who   follows   up   a   successful  novel  with  regular  new  books   of  similar   (or  improved!)   quality  will  gain  more  sales.    Of  course,  these  books  will   also  need   active   promotion.     But   any   book   following   a   successful   predecessor   will   have  a  greater   chance  of  success   as  the   author   will  already  be  known  to  a  base  of  fans.

Combined Services Support by Terri Laverick Group (CSSG)

It’s   never   been   easier   to   promote  your   books   effectively  than  in   the  digital  age.    Whenever  you  publish  a  new  book,  you   can  access   social   media  and  be  stocked  in  online  bookshops  for  next   to   no   cost,  other   than  time   and  effort   –   advantages   never   enjoyed  by   earlier  writers. Four   top   tips  for   boosting  serial   sales  available   to   all   published   writers: • At  the   end  of  each  book,  add  the   beginning  of  the  next  one  in   the   series,   with   the   planned   publication   date,   to   whet   the   reader’s  appetite  and  prime  them  to  buy  it   as  soon  as  it  comes   out. • Create   your   own   mailing  list   of   fans  by  embedding   a   sign-­‐up   form   on   your   author   website   or   using  an   emailing  service   like   Feedburner,   so   that   you’ll   be   able   to   contact   them   direct   as   soon  as  the  next  book  is  published. • Stay  in  regular  communication  with  the  reading  world  by  having   either   or   both  Goodreads  and   Facebook  author   pages   and/or   writing  a  blog. • Offer   free  downloads   or   giveaways   of   the  first  book  in  a  series   to   hook  new   readers.  If   they   enjoy  it   enough,  they’ll   buy  the   rest  of  the  series.

Well  time  has  flown  by  since  I  last  wrote  our  article  for  ‘The  DSM’,   and  we  are  now  looking  forward  to  our  second  meeting.    It  will  be   held  on  18th  May  2013  at   the  Café  des  Belle  Fleurs  in  Fenioux  at   11am,  and  anyone  interested  in  helping  to  support  our  local  Military   Charities  are  more  than  welcome  to  join  us.    Many  of  us  arrive  early   and  begin  the  morning  with  a  hearty  English  style  breakfast  prior  to   the  meeting.     If  you  are  thinking  of   coming  and  would  like  to   have   breakfast  as  well,  please  contact  Ross  Hendry  and  he  will  organize  it   for  you. A  full  list  of  our  social  and  fund-­‐raising  events  that  our  members  are   assisting,  organizing  or   attending  will   be  available  at   the  meeting,   but   a  couple  of  dates  for  your   calendar  are  12th  May  at  Le  Ferriere-­‐ en-­‐Parthenay.     Paperback  Jan  is  holding  her  “Clear   Your  Clutter  For   Charity”  event   and  we  will   be  selling  tea,  coffee  and   cakes.     Also   there  will  be  a  tombola  table.    Then  on  Sunday  9th  June  we  shall  be   at   the   Salle   de   Fetes,   St-­‐Germain-­‐de-­‐Longue-­‐Champs,   (by   kind   invitation  of  Aidez)  with  a  tombola  stand.    For  both  these  events  our   chosen   Charity   is   The   Soldiers,   Sailors,   Airman   and   Families   Association  (more  often  known  as  SSAFA). SSAFA  is  a  registered  charity,  both  in  the  UK  and  here  in  France,  and   all  monies  raised  in  France  is  used  in  France  to  help  Service  and  ex-­‐ Service   members  or   their   families   in   times   of   need   or   hardship.     SSAFA   is   based   in   the   Bordeaux   area   but   has   case-­‐workers  and   helpers   all   over   France.     The   SSAFA  box   at   A  La  Bonne   Vie,  Le   Beugnon,  raised  the  sum  of  123.80€  and   I   am  sure  that  Carl  and   Carol   Walker   would   join   me   in   thanking   all   those   of   you   who   contributed  to  this  amount.     Page 12


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

News  from  the  Pays  de  Gâtine!  by Julia Salvat Preventing  a  Fire  –  A  Hot  Topic

On  12th  March  2013  a  meeting   was  held  at  the  Centre  d’Incendie   et   Secours  (Fire  Station)  in  Parthenay  to  educate  English  speaking   home  owners  in  this  area  to  the  perils  of  fire. The  big  event  of  April  was  the  launch  of  our  calendar.   You  will  see  individual   and  group  shots  covering   the  20  months  of   the  remainder  of  this  year  and  the  whole  of  2014.    26  lovely  ladies   are  in  the  photos  including  Phyllis  who  is  our   oldest  participant   at   92. The  success  of  the  calendar  is  mainly  down  to  a  wonderful   team  of   Sue   Blair,  Penny   Brewer,  Karen   Davies,  Christine  Hester   and   Jilly   Rosenberg.     Jilly   kindly   gave   her   time   to   do   the  ladies   hair   and   make  up  and  Penny  was  our  brilliant  photographer. Sale  of  the  calendar  is  going  really  well   and  if  you  would  like  one,  (or   more!)  it   can   now  be  ordered  by  email:  reaction.tickets@yahoo.fr   at  a  cost  of  10€  per  calendar  plus  postage.   Alternatively  the  calendar  may  be  purchased   at  any  of  the  shows   or  at  the  following  venues  :-­‐ • Restaurant    A  La  Bonne  Vie,  Le  Beugnon • Café  des  Belles  Fleurs,  Fenioux • Pause!  Café,  L’Absie • Cafe  Cour  du  Miracle,  Vouvant Please  give   generously  and  remember  that  ALL  proceeds   from  the   sale  of  the   calendar  goes  to  the  Leukemia  &  Lymphoma  Research   Foundation  in  the  UK  and   La  Fondation   de  France:     La  Recherche   contre  Leucemie  et  Lymphome  here  in  France. Based   on   ticket   sales   so   far,   all   performances   should   be   a   great   success.     The  performances  at  Secondigny  will  be  over   by  the  time   you  read   this  and  we  will  have  moved  all   scenery  and  props  to  La   Chataigneraie   and   carried   out   technical   rehearsals   checking   out   lights  and   sound   equipment   and  making  any  adjustments  needed   for  a  different  sized  stage.   You   still   have   a   chance   to   see   this   wonderful   play   by   booking   tickets  for  the  performances  at  La  Chataigneraie  Theatre  on:   • Friday  3rd  May  at  8pm • Saturday  4th  May  at  8pm Tickets  may  be  booked   via  email  on   reaction.tickets@yahoo.fr     or   by  telephone.    Please  ring  Maureen  Murdoch  on  05  49  77  23  54. Best  wishes  to  you  all  and  thank  you  for  your  continued  support. John  Blair Don’t   forget   if   you   would   like   to   join   the   Theatre   team,   the   Keynote  Singers  or  The  Art  Scene  you  would  be  very  welcome,  just   send  me  an  email  for  details:    johnblair@btopenworld.com  

Firstly  Captain  Beauvais,  Division   Commander  for  the  North  of   the   Deux-­‐Sèvres,  based  in   Parthenay,   gave  an   overall  presentation   of   the   Service   Départmental   d’Incendie   et   de   Secours   (SDIS)   and   explained  how  they  operate  in   the   Deux-­‐Sèvres.     In   France  there   are   32,000   professional   firemen   (civil   servants)   and   200,000   volunteers. There   are   377,784   inhabitants   in   the   Deux-­‐Sèvres   and   305   communes   (100   of   those   making   up   the   Gâtine).   For   administration  purposes  they  have  divided  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  in   two,   to  make  North  and   South  divisions.    The  main  central  fire  station  is   in   Niort,  and  there  are  also  five  other  centres:  Thouars,  Bressuire,   Parthenay,  St  Maixent   l’École  and   Melle.     There  are  26  Fire  and   Emergency   services   and   a   further   20   smaller   centres.   Their   responsibilities  are  far  more  varied   than   the  UK,  as  they   not  only   cover   fire   but   flooding,   first   aid,   rescue   service,   car   accidents,   problems  with  chemicals  &  radio  active  products.     Preventing  accidents  and  educating  the  public  is  key.    There  is  a  fire   in  France  every  2  minutes!    It  can  take  hold  so  quickly  that  you  only   have  3  minutes  to  escape.     It  is   often  not  flames  that  kill  but   toxic   smoke  and  at   least   50%  of  the   victims  go  to  hospital   or   die.     At   night  the  risk  is   even   greater  and  victims  are  asphyxiated   in  their   sleep. The  answer  is  a  smoke  detector  and  they  will  be  obligatory   in   homes  by  8th  March  2015.    This  will  at  least  buy  you   time,  but   remember  we  live  in  a  rural  area.     Then  John  Hoyland,  a  retired   British  fireman   living  in  Parthenay,     took  over   the   presentation   and   explained   that   the  bedroom   was   the   most   flammable   room  in   the  house  and  although  a   detector   will  alert  you,  it  does  not  put  fire  out.     The  gases  can  paralyse   the   nervous   system   and   cause   death.     A   room   on   fire   can   easily   explode  in  only  three  and  a  half  minutes. Therefore,   check   for   possible   hazards   -­‐   flexible   gas   pipes   have   expiry  dates,  Brillo   pads  (steel  wool)  next  to  a  battery  can  cause   a   spark,  aerosols,  hair  spray  etc  are  all  highly  flammable.     Attention   needs  to  be  paid  to  all  electrical  wiring,  and  filters  on  tumble  dryers   must  be  cleaned  regularly. Always  plan  an  escape  route  from  your  house,  and  ask  yourself  the   question   what   would   I  do  if……..?      Make  sure  you  have  a  good   escape   route  with   no  locked   gates!     Don’t   try  to  put   out   a  fire   yourself,   unless   very   small.     Get   out   of   the   house   as   soon   as   possible.     He   suggested   a   fire   blanket   is   extremely   useful   for   smothering  flames.     It  gave  us  a  lot  to  think  about  and  follow  up  in  our  own  homes. Julia  SALVAT,  Pays  de  Gâtine.     Tel:  05  49  64  25  49  ~  Email:  julia.salvat@gatine.org Website:  www.gatine.org

Page 13


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

17th May - 7th July 2013 In Parthenay (79) The Jazz Festival is coming back! Operation  «Commandos  Jazz»:  

Every  Friday  evening  in  May  and  June,  you   can   enjoy   a   free   concert   in   a   village   in   Gâtine.  Also,  not  to  be  missed: •Mourad   Benhammou   will   be   playing   on   5th   July!   Communicative  energy  and   style,   discover   or   rediscover   the   drummer   Mourad  Benhammou  with  his  trio,  and  the   Jazz  Workers!   • Tanuki  Brass  Band  will  honour  us  on  6th  and  7th  July!     Their  motto  is:  rhythm,  emotion,  and  pleasure  to  play,  wherever   they  feel  like  it! • And  a  lot  of  other  artists  too  …  

Small Colour advert only 34€

Jazz Festival

Donʼt hesitate... come and swing!

For   more   information   about   the   festival,   consult   the   website:   www.lejazzbatlacampagne.com  or  contact  us  at  05  49  64  25  49.

For  a  full  list  of  our  advertising  rates,   please  phone  05  49  70  26  21    for  an   advertising  pack  or  download   from  our  website:   www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

Festivities & Friendship during by P Jacq the Airvault Festival As   every   year,   the   town   of   Airvault   and   the   surrounding   villages   will   be   hosting   the   Music  and  Dances  of   the  World   festival,  9th  -­‐  14th  of  July. Meeting  people,   making  friends,   discovering   other   cultures…   these   things   make   this   event,   organised   by   the   centre   socioculturel   and   its   volunteers,   what  it  is.  This  year   artists  from  Daghestan,   Central  Africa  and  Ukraine  will  perform  in  Barroux,  Irais  and  Airvault  to   show   us   something   of   their   culture   and   their   traditions   during   Festivillages. Free   concerts,   apericf   and  concert  and  a  theme   meal   animated   by   a   group   from   Brazil   and   D j e f a k o   w i t h   t h e i r   African   colours   will   c o m p l e t e   t h e   programme   which   will   end   with   a   firework   display   on   the   14th   July   at  Soulièvres. Anyone   who   wishes   to   volunteer   to   help  organise   the  festival,  or  who   would  like  to   host   foreign  singers  and  dancers  is  welcome  to  contact  us. Please   contact   the  centre  socioculturel  de  l’Airvaudais  et   du  Val   du  Thouet,  16  ter  rue  Emmanuel  Bonnet  79600  Airvault: Tel:  05  49  64  73  10  ~  Email:    csc-­‐airvault@wanadoo.fr Photos: P Jacq

New  Chef  at  JB79 A   new   era   has   emerged   for   JUST   BRASS   79   (the   brass   band   of   Limalonges),   with   the   recent   appointment   of   a   new   Musical  Director   in  Enrik  Legros.    The  band   had   been  searching   for  a  new  Musical  Director  for  over   2  years,  and  many  thanks  go   to   principal   euphonium   player   Rob   Burnett   for   holding   things   together   by  both   playing   in  and   directing  the  16   piece  group   over  the  past  2  years. Enrik   studied   horn,   music   theory   and   percussion   at   the   Conservatoire  de  Valenciennes  from  1972,  winning  1st   prize   for   his   studies  in   1977  and   1978.     He   has   been   a  music   teacher   in   Romagne  since   1985.     He  also   directs   several   choirs   including   'The   Lyre'   in   Charroux.     He   held   the   position   of   principal   euphonium   with   the   brass   band   of   Chateauroux   prior   to  his   appointment  with  JUST   BRASS  79.    The   band   have   recently   undertaken   their   first   concert   under   his   direction  at   the  salle  des   fetes  in   Charroux,  where  a  packed   hall   enjoyed  an  evening  of  brass  and  voices  all  under   the  direction   of   Enrik. In   the  future,  JUST  BRASS   79  will  be   giving   several   concerts,  the  first   joint  concert   will   be  at  Mairie-­‐Levescault  (79)   in  the  salle  des   fetes   on   Wednesday  29th   May   at   8.30pm   with   free   entry.     Thursday   evening,   30th   May,  the  concert  will   be  at  the  theatre  verdure  in  Chef  Boutonne   (rear   of   the   Mairie)   at   8pm,   again   with   free   entry.     Uckfield   Concert  Brass  have  been  keen  to  renew  their  friendship  with  JUST   BRASS  79  since  their  first  visit  to  Chef  Boutonne  in  2011. Anyone  interested  in   joining  JUST  BRASS  79   can  find  full   details   on   www.justbrass79.fr  or  call   Neville  James  (president)  on  05   49   27   17   93   or   perhaps   visit   the   band   at   the   salle   des   fetes   in   Limalonges   where   a   warm   welcome   will   await   you,   any   Wednesday  evening  between  8pm  -­‐  10pm. Page 14


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Take a Break... DSM  Easy  Crossword Across: Down: 8.   An   independent   African/Arabian   1.   Circle   of   light   around   the   head   of   a     ruler  (5)   saint  (4) 9.   Make  level  or  straight  (4-­‐3) 2.   Famous  English  admiral  (6) 10.   Remote,  not  clearly  understood  (7) 3.   Victory  or  major  achievement  (7) 11.   Hoarse  sound  made  by  a  frog  (5) 4.   Small  solid  extraterrestrial  body  (6) 12.   Engage  in  plotting  (8) 5.   Large  deciduous  tree  (5) 13.   Set  of  three  (4) 6.   Personal  integrity  (6) 15.  Opposite  to  right  (4) 7.   Police  surveillance  operation  (8) 17.   Any   of   several   small,   long-­‐tailed   12.   River  that  flows  through  Texas  and  into     parrots  (8)   the    Gulf  of  Mexico  (8) 21.   Helicopter  blade  (5) 14.   Catch  fire,  ignite  (7) 22.   Utters  words  incoherently  (7) 16.   Excessive  devotion  to  some  activity  (6) 24.   Rubbish  container  (7) 18.   Person  with  an  absence  of  pigment  in   25.   Capital  of  Bulgaria  (5)   the  skin,  hair  and  eyes  6) 19.   Raise  or  fill  with  high  spirits  (6) 20.   Corrupt   someone   through   illegal     payments  (5) 23.   Hit  with  the  palm  of  the  hand  (4)

Down: Toughie  Crossword 1.   First  could   be   egg,   second   measurer?     (5) 2.   A  period  of  staying  in  could  mean  a     good,  long  life.  (7) 3. Bird  on  a  string?  (4) 4.   Video   colour   is   thinner   towards   the     end.  (7) 5.   To   suggest   is   easily   done   without     direction.  (5) 6.   Kind  of   red;   clear,   but   obscured   with     time.  (6) 8.   Variety   of   teas   should   quench   one’s     appetite.  (4) 12.   Kind  of   font  hidden  in  the   pulpit  Alice     visited.  (6) 13.   Cosh   employed   in   small   college   is     something  to  fall  back  on.  (7) 15.   Anger  following   hesitation  over  a  note     gives  offence.  (7) 16.   Opera  for  “ The  Great  Unwashed”?  (4) 18.   Belief  in   being  superior   about   colour?     (5) 20.   Mount   double   note   in  way   to   make   a     call.  (5) 21.   On   one   occasion,   cone   was   wrecked.     (4)

Sudoku Corner... Easy

www.websudoku.com

Hard

With  thanks  to  M.Morris

Please  see  website:  www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr  for  answers

Across: 1.   Opposite   consistencies   you   will   do     well  to  struggle  though?  (5,3,4) 7.   Records   medley   of   items   with     international  organisation  input.  (7) 9.   Familiar   friend   taking   in   father     concerned  with  pontiff.  (5) 10.   Banker  and  staff   concealing   foreign     currency.  (4) 11.   New   party   are   forming   where     believers  make  their  requests?  (2,6) 12.   Small   creature   having   a   place     within  a  separate  group?  (6) 14.   ANer   publicity  on   morally  upright.     (6) 17.   Old  family  member,  a  kind  of  star     once?  (8) 19.   Double   meaning  prefix   inside   is  for     exotic  wader.  (4) 22.   Ancient   tribe   found   in   frozen     province.  (5) 23.   Attractive  leaf  shape  recovered  from     an  inept  shambles.  (7) 24.   Commonly   said   to   be   mad   about     taking  a  corner.  (5,3,4)

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

A-Z of the Communes in the Deux-Sèvres A-Z of the Communes of the by  Sue  Burgess Deux-Sèvres. CHEY Chey   is   a   village   of   629   inhabitants   in   the   canton   of   Lezay.   Its   inhabitants   are   called   Casaniens   and   Casaniennes.   The   neighbouring   villages   are   Chenay,   Sepvret,   Exoudun,   Lezay   and   Bougon.     The  highest  point  of   Chey,  at  171  metres  above  sea  level,   is  at  la  Bourdonnerie  in  the  north  west  of  the  commune.   A  VOIR  /  MUST  SEE • The  manor  house    (privately  owned) • The  communal  wash-­‐house  in  the  centre  of  the  village

• The  wash-­‐house  on  the  road  to  Sepvret • The  parish  church    (usually  closed) CHICHÉ Chiché  is  a  member   of  the  Communauté  de  Communes  “Coeur  de   Bocage”  along  with   Bressuire,  Courlay,  Boismé  and  Faye  l'Abbesse.   The   commune   is   situated   on   the   N149   which   links   Nantes   to   Poitiers,   between   Bressuire   and   Parthenay.   It   is   crossed   by   the   Thouaret  river. The     commune  of   Chiché   was   crossed   by   a   Roman   road   linking   Poitiers   to   Nantes   and   by   the   route   from   Thouars   to   Marans.   This   road   crossed   the   Motte   de   Chiché   where   a   tumulus   has   been   discovered.   The   tumulus   probably   dates   from   the   Carolingian   period.   T h e   R o m a n   d o m a i n   o f     Above: The monument for the dead of the Vendée wars. «Cassius»   became   «Villa   de   Cassiacus»,   then   the   name   «Cassicum»   appeared   and   finally  the  name  of  Chiché  is  mentioned  in  the  10th  century. In   1214,  during  the   war   between   France  and   England,   the   town   which  was   occupied  by  the  Plantagenets,  was   burnt   by  Philippe-­‐ Auguste.     In   the  same   year,  John   Lackland   spent   a   night   in   the   castle   of   Chiché   whilst   on   his   way  to   Anjou   with   his   army.   The   church  was  burnt  down  by  the   protestants  in  1558   during  the  wars   of  religion.

A  VOIR  /  MUST  SEE • Along   the   Thouaret,   the   remains   of   water   mills   at   Haut   Gourneau,  Bas  Gourneau,  la  Guirère  (with  its  wheel),  la  Vergnaie,   in   the   village,   la   Poraire   (with   its   wheel),  moulin   Aumont   and   Chantegros. • The  windmills  linked  to  some  of  the  water  mills  at   Bas  Gourneau,   la  Guirère,   la  Missardière  and   la  Poraire,  with   its   sails,   which   is   inhabited. • The   remains   of   three   priories;   at   Pierlay,   la   Poraire   and   Bandouille.   • The   remains   of   a   feudal   castle   at   Haut   Chausserais   (le   Logis).   Some  parts  of  the  walls  and  the  ditches  can  be   observed  as   well   as  part  of  a  doorway  and  a  pigeon  loft.   • The   old   Gallic-­‐Roman   bridge   over   the   Thouaret   and   the   remains   of   the     11th   century   castle   built   by   Thibaud   1   of   Beaumont.   • The   church   (12th   century),   an   old  romanesque  building  and  an   old  Gothic  chapel,  "Notre   Dame   de  la  Recouvrance"  (dating  from   the  15th  century)  which  is  today   Above: Gallic-Roman bridge used  as  the  town  hall.   • The  memorial  stone  near  the  church   in  memory  of  those  killed  in   the  Vendée  wars • Chiché  also    has  several  large  stone  crosses. LE CHILLOU The   small   commune   of   Le   Chillou   is   situated   near   Saint   Loup   Lamairé,  the  main  town  of   the  canton.    The  town  hall  of  Le  Chillou   stands  at   about  150m  above  sea   level  and  the  population   in  2007   was   104.   There   are   78   main   residences   in   Le   Chillou   and   approximately  14  holiday  homes  and  12  vacant  houses.   A  VOIR  /  MUST  SEE The   «circus»   of   Seneuil   is   situated   about   7kms   South   East   of   Airvault   on   the   territory   of   the   commune   of   le   Chillou.     It   is   a   remarkable  example  of  a   dry  river  bed  in  the  valley  of  the  Gâteau   (or   Acheneau)  a   tributary  of  the  Thouet.    It’s   part   of  a  limestone   valley,  the   valley  of  the  Orangerie   which   is   marked  by  a   series   of     semi-­‐circular   «circus»   corresponding   to   meanders   of   rivers   and   streams.    The  banks  are  covered  with  grass  or  oak  trees. The   «circus»   of   Seneuil   is  a   very   picturesque   site   because   of   its   regular  shape  and  its  difference  in  levels.     30m  difference  between   its   highest   and   lowest   point.     The   stream   of   the   Gâteau   today   passes  behind  la  Butte  de   la  Garde  and  short  cuts  the  old  dry  river   bed.   Behind   the   Butte   de   la   Garde,   the   sources   of   the   Seneuil   provide  drinking  water   for  17  communes  around   Parthenay.    They   are  fed   by  underground   water   which   comes   from   the   Pontreau,   downstream  from  the  Château  of  the  Orangerie.

During  the   revolution   many  of   the  inhabitants  of   Chiché  were  on   the   side   of   the   opponents   of   the   revolution   and   between   December   1793   and  March   1794,  24  Chichéens  and  Chichéennes   were   sent  to  the   guillotine.    A  memorial  stone   near   the  church  is   a   witness  to  these  events. Chiché   was   occupied   by   the   Germans   for   four   years   during   the   second  world  war.

More  ‘A-­‐Z  of  the  Communes  of  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres.’ next  month...

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Health, Beauty & Fitness... 2013 Beauty Recommendations Samantha says...

Eye  shadow  Shades  2013.  This  season  you  will  be  seeing   rich  mauve,  pearly  pink-­‐beige,  shimmery  lilac  and  deep   eggplant   eyeshadow.     These   are   beautiful   to   create  a   fabulous  day/night  eye  look. Base  your  eye   socket  with  a  good  eye   shadow  base  or   concealer   this   will   make   the   application   much   more   flawless  and  last  the  entire  day.

Take  the   light   pearly   pink   beige  and   apply  over   the   whole   socket,   gently  blend   the   rich   mauve   into   the   outer   corners   once   you   are   happy   with  the  outer   corner   shape  and  colour  blend  the   shimmery   lilac  into  the  outer  corner  of  the  eye.     Blending  is  the  key  to   any  eye   shadow  look. I  love  to   bring  the  darker   shade  softly  under  the  bottom  lashes  and   take  your  liquid  liner   to   the  base  of  the  top  lashes  to   create  a  thicker   fuller  lash.     Finish  off  with  a  lash  building  mascara,  both  on   the   top   lashes   and   bottom.     Et   voila,   you   are  ready  to  enjoy  your   summer   days  ............... Samantha's  recommended   item  is   Chanel  les  4  ombres  quadra  eye   shadow  pallette  in  Raffinement  available  in  Sephora.    

Emma says... Are  there   any   brave   ladies  out   there  for  this   summer?     Yes  the  pixie  cut  is  back  in   as  one  of   this  year’s  trendiest  hairstyles  for  2013. The   pixie   cut   is   an   extremely  short   hairstyle   and   is  now  classed   as  one   of  the  best   short   hair  cuts.  It’s  a  style  recommended  if  you  have   an  oval  face  shape  and  it  can  carry  off  most  colours.  It’s  popular  with   the  girls  this  season  and  most  celebrities  such  as  Charlise  Theron  are   going  for  it  too. If  you’re  not  feeling  that   brave,  why  not  keep   a  long  sweeping  side   fringe  which  can  also  give  a  gorgeous  soft  look  for  this  summer.    It  is   also  a  low  maintenance  style  which  will  give  you  more  time  to   enjoy   the  sunshine  with  a  small  glass  of  vino. Charente  Hair  &  Make  Up Tel:  05  45  31  56  93  /  06  50  04  37  30 www.charentehairandbridal.com

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Bowls  Anyone?

Colour Advert Size A or B, only 38€ per month or from 33,33€ per month for 12 months.

Satyananda Yoga Classes at ‘Maison pour tous’, L’Absie. 7pm - 8.30pm on Thursdays and Salle de millenaire, rue saint roch, Largeasse. 7pm - 8,30pm on Wednesdays. Contact Rysz for more info: 06 42 35 97 11

By Terry Titheridge

Perigord   Lawn   Bowls   Club   is  looking   for  new   members  for  next   season. As  featured  in  the  first  TV  series  of  “Little  England”  we  are  the  only   bowls  club  in  France.     Situated  just  south  of  Angouleme,  near   the   village   of  Monsec  in  the  north  Dordorgne,  we  offer   a  full   range  of   league,  tournament  and  club  competitions  throughout  the  season,   as  well  as  a  range  of  social  activities. The   club   is  at   La  Charrue,  hosted  by  Pauline  and   Clive   Davie  and   offers   a  wide   range   of   facilities   including   gîtes,   B&B,   swimming   pool   and   restaurant.   They   are   renowned   for   their   Sunday  roast   dinners  and  Friday  fish  &  chips  and  music  evenings. So   if   you   are   a   beginner   or   experienced   bowler   –   we   can   offer   either  full  or  temporary  memberships. For  further  information,  check  out  the  websites: www.la-­‐charruefrance.com   or   www.bowlsinfrance.com,   or   contact   club   president   Martin   Hayhow   on   05   49   96   82   54   or   competition  sec.  Terry  Titheridge  on  05  49  69  06  61.

Contact  ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Our Furry Friends...

HOPE BOOK SALE 24/25/26 May 10am - 4pm Salle des fetes, Clussais-La-Pommeraie, 79190 (D45 Sauze Vaussais to Lezay Road) Thousands of English and French books, fiction and non-fiction for adults and children, each for just 1 euro.

Contact  ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

APPEAL Esprit   is  only  2  years  old   and  retired   from  the  chasse.     He  met  with  a  nasty   accident   with   a   boar   and   the   boar   won.  His  owner  took  him  to  the  vet  to   be  put  down   due   to   an  injury  on  his   leg,  luckily  for   us  the  vet  refused  and   treated  the  injury  and  neutered  him.

ESPRIT

Many trade stands and interesting things to see and do including: * Massive sale of plants * English fish and chips (by Mr T’s Fisherie) * Tea and cakes * Bacon butties (by La Boite Delicieuse) * Excellent quality 2nd hand clothes * Exciting bric-a-brac * Dog agility and obedience display (25th May) * Face-painting (26th May) * Classic car display (26th May) Please see www.hopeassoc.org for further details. Books to donate? Email:givebooks4hope@gmail.com

Esprit   will  be  recovering  for  the  next   few   weeks   and   it’s   still   not   certain   whether   he   will   keep   his   leg  but   the   vet  is  optimistic.  He  is  a  shy   but   kind   dog  and  he  is  about  2  years  old.     The   operation   won’t   be   done   straight   away,  the   vet  is  going  to  make  him  a  boot  to   try  and   correct   his   foot.     If   that   doesn’t   work   then   the   vet   will   go   ahead   with   amputation.

Hope  Association   has   lots  of  dogs  and   cats   looking   for   adoption/ foster  homes  please  take  a  look  at   our  website  www.hopeassoc.org   if  you  can  help.

If   you  can   give  Esprit  a  forever,  loving  home  please  contact  Linda   Burns  at  linda.burns4hope@gmail.com  for  more  information.

Mayday Mes Amis  has  been  formed  to  help  animals  in  need  in   l'Absie  and  the  surrounding  area.   For  more  information  please  email:  jill.zub@sky.com.

www.hopeassoc.org.

MAYDAY MES AMIS

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

The mysterious exploits of Hercules and Galipette Some  of  you   may  remember   the  unfortunate   story  of  Hercules  the   cat   from  last   year.    To  recap:  his   family  were   going  on   holiday  to   Portugal   from   Paris   and   stopped   at   the   motorway   exit   at   Bournezeau  for  a  break.    Hercules  was   on   lead   but   somehow  got   away.     His  family   couldn't   catch   him  so  reluctantly  carried   on  to   Portugal   from   where  they  contacted  us.     Some  of  our   volunteers   went  to  look  for   him  and  actually  saw  him  once  but  couldn't  catch   him.   After   a  couple  of  weeks  with  no   further   sightings  we  gave  up   looking  for  him. We  were  surprised  and  delighted  when  a  few  weeks   ago  someone   in   Bournezeau   contacted   us   to   say   that   they   had   found   him.   However  our  reaction  pales  into  insignificance   compared  with   the   emotion  with  which   our   phone  call  informing  the  owner  was   met.   She  was  so   overcome  with   joy   that  she  couldn't   speak  and  had  to   pass  the  phone  to  her  husband.   They  actually  left  their   home  at   4   o'clock  in  the  morning  to  come  to  pick  him  up.

And   now  a   story  in   need   of   a   happy   ending...  recently  we  were   asked  by  another  association  to  help  place  a  three  legged  cat.    She   had   gone   missing   for   a   couple   of   days   and   when   spotted   by   its   owner   appeared   injured.   It   took   him   a   week   to   catch   her   and   discover   the   extent   of  her  injuries.    Most   of  the  flesh   was  missing   from   the   lower   part   of  her   front,  right   leg  and   she   had  abrasions   around   her   mouth.   He   immediately   took   her   to   a   vet   who   amputated   the   leg.   Although   we'll   never   know   for   certain   what   happened,  the   vet   believes  that   she   was  caught   in   some  sort   of   jawed  trap  (illegal  since  1995). The  vet   bills  were   paid  by  another   association,  but  the  owner   was   unable  to  give  Gallipette  the  necessary  care,  so   we  were  asked  to   help.    We  have  placed  her   with  one  of  our  foster  families  where  she   is  doing  well  and  is  looking  for  a  new  owner.  

Need  I  point  out  that  it  was   only  because  they  had  the  foresight  to   have   Hercules  identified  (a  legal  requirement)  that  this  story  had   a   happy  ending?

Gallipette If  you're  interested  more  details  can  be  found   on   our  website:  www.nosamislesanimaux.com  or  you  can  phone  07  70   31  54  59. Nos Amis Les Animaux 85480 (NALA 85480). Tel: 07  70  31  54  59  ~  

Email: nala85480@hotmail.com www.nosamislesanimaux.com

Hercules

Phoenix   Associauon,   who   rescue   and   re-­‐ home   animals   in   need,   has   a   new   website.   Please  visit:   www.phoenixasso.com   and   find   out   what  you  can  do  to  help  animals  in   need   in  south  west  France! You   may   enjoy   reading   the   success  stories  and  finding  out   about   upcoming   events,   as   well   as   looking   at   all   the   beautiful   animals   awaiting   adoption.

HOOF (Horse Orientated Open Forum)

HOOF  is  open  to  anyone  with  an  equine  interest.     You  do  not  need  to  own  a  horse!    We  meet  about  once  a  month   for  talks,  visits  etc.    Interested? Contact Jo Rowe on: 05 49 64 30 59

Equine Rescue France

We are always looking for new members and we are in need of donations so we may continue to help equines in France. Please support the ERF.

Please contact Equine Rescue France via their website www.equinerescuefrance.org

Ever   thought   of  Fostering  a  dog?  there   are  literally   thousands   of   dogs  being  destroyed   in  France   each  year  because  they   cannot  be  found  good  homes  in   time.     Fostering  an   animal   saves  lives  and   allows  abandoned  or   unwanted   dogs  to  be  assessed   and   home-­‐trained.    It   takes  a  certain  type  of   person  to  do  this   work  and  you  must   be  dedicated  and  have  previous  experience   of  owning   a  dog.     Could  you  do  it?   For   more   details   please   contact   AssociaWon   Orfee   by   email:   asso.orfee@laposte.net   or   fosteringinfrance@gmail.com  for  further  details. Page 20


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

The Great Outdoors...

Bonne Pêche

Now  that  the  warmer  weather   is  here  you  might   be   thinking   of   dusting   off   your   fishing   tackle   that   hasn’t   been   used   since  autumn.    If  that  is  the  case,  you  should  do  a  few  simple  tasks,  so   that  your  equipment  doesn’t  let  you  down  on  the  bank. 1. 2. 3. 4.

Put  new  line  on  your  reels  (it  doesn’t  last  forever!). Check  your  brolly  hasn’t  been  food  for  mice  over  the  winter. Make  sure  all  your  terminal  tackle  is  topped  up   with  the  things     you  use  most  frequently. Check  batteries  in  all  bite  alarms.

Colour Advert Size A or B, only 38€ per month or from 33,33€ per month for 12 months.

by Simon Tee

Over   the   coming   months   I   will   be   providing   some  hints   and   tips   to  hopefully  help  you  put  more   fish  on  the  bank,  from  roach  to   carp.

If  you  are  a  novice,  try  to  go  fishing  with  as  many  good  anglers  as  you   can  because   you   can’t  beat  being  under  the  wing  of  an   experienced   angler. When   carp   fishing,  don’t   simply  follow  the   stereotypical   approach.     Try  to  think  outside  of  the  bubble,  especially  on  hard-­‐fished   waters.     For  example,  try  a  float  at  close  range  or  off   the  surface.     Everybody   talks  about  this  style  of  fishing,  but  when  they  get  to  the  lake  they  are   sitting  behind  hundreds  of  pounds  of  bite  alarms,  with  baits   all  hard   on  the  bottom. I  often  spend  a  long  time  watching  a  lake  before  I  even  get  a  rod  out,   and  when  I  do  cast  in,  I  am  confident   that  I  have  fish   in  front  of  me.     So   don’t  just   plot  up  in  the   first   comfortable  swim  that   you   come   across,  have   a   walk  around   and   watch  the   water.     On  some  small   fisheries  you  might  be  better  wearing  your  slippers  when  you  do  this   because  fish  are  very  easily  spooked. Fishing  is  not  always  about  catching  big  fish;  it  is  about  being  there  –   watching  the  wildlife,  doing  it,  using  your  skill  and  knowledge  to  put   that  elusive  fish  on  the  bank. Don’t   get   me  wrong,  I  like   to   catch   big   fish,  but   if   Mother   Nature   decides  that   today   is  not   the  day  –  there  is  always  tomorrow.     If  it   were   that   easy,   it   wouldn’t   be   called   fishing,   it   would   be   called   catching. Our  lake  temperature  is  above  10  degrees,  and  the  fish  are  hungry,  so   present  them  their  dinner,  and  get  them  on  the  bank…….  

Bonne pêche, Simon

Simon  Tee  is  the  proprietor  of  2  coarse  fishing   lakes  in  Secondigny  (www.francefishinggites.com)

"

Please  don’t  forget  to  mention ‘The Deux-Sèvres Monthly’ when  responding  to  an  advert.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

The   swallows   are   back   in  the  area!

Abeilles (Bees)

This  year,  more  than   a  month  ahead  of   Spring,  we  see  the  first  swallow  arrive  in   the  region  (February  2nd).     It  is  a  Barn   swallow,  which  has  travelled   more  than   6,000   miles  from  its  wintering  grounds   in  Central  Africa  to  France.

Two  years  ago   my  husband  Mike,  and  my  son,  Keenan,  both  took   the  course  and  I  now  I’ve  decided  I  want   to   learn  more  about  the   bees  too.  

It   may  be  one  of  those  whose  nest   was  recorded  last  year   in   the   regional   survey.     To  recall,  last   May  we   launched   a  large  regional   survey   on   the   Swallows   and   their   declined   numbers   in   Poitou-­‐ Charentes.   We   are   interested   in   particular   in   three   species   of   nesting   swallows:  the   House  Martin,  the  Swallow  and   the   Bank  Swallow.   Coordinated   by   the   LPO   under   the   aegis   of   France   Poitou-­‐ Charentes  Nature,  the   survey  is  run  locally  by  four   associations  for   the   protection   of   nature:   Ornithology   Group   of   Deux-­‐Sèvres,   Charente   Nature,   LPO   Charente-­‐Maritime   and   the   LPO   Vienna.   Through   a   large   campaign   in   four   corners   of   the   region   (eg.   evening  discovery  and   survey  results  in  Saint-­‐Martin-­‐du-­‐Fouilloux),   it  has  helped   to   raise  awareness  of  those  species  whose  numbers   have  declined  significantly  over  the  past  twenty  years. More   than   240   people,   mostly   volunteers,   came   together   and   identified  a  total  of  over  8,300  occupied  nests.  By  building  it’s  nest   under   the  eaves  of  our   homes   it   makes  them  all  the  more  simple   to  count. Swallows   will   be   closely   monitored   in   2013!   and   in   May   we   officially  relaunch  the  investigation.    Volunteers  will  be  asked  again   to  participate  in  counting  occupied  nests  near  them....

by Tania Dominey

Last   month  I  started   Rucher  Ecole   de  L’Abeille   des  Deux-­‐Sèvres   (Bee  school)  at  Celles-­‐sur-­‐Belle.

It  is   a  course  for  beginners   and  on  the  first   day  thirty  nine  of  us   attended   (three   English).   The   first   two   lessons   were   listening   lessons  due   to   the   cold,  wet   weather,  but   last   lesson   we  were   able   to   open   the   hives   as   the   temperature   had   risen   to   over   15˚C. As   the   weather   has   at   last   improved,   we   were   also   able   to   ‘spring   clean’   our   hives   at   home   too.     All   of   the   hives   have   survived  the  winter  which  is  very  pleasing. They  were  all  very  busy  and  we   gave  them  syrup  with   vitamins   which  you   must   do  every   spring   to  help  them  start  the   season.   This  weekend  we  hope  to   put   the   ‘supers’  on   so  that   the   bees   can  start  filling  them  with  Colza  (oil  seed  rape)  honey  for  us.    We   will  keep  you  updated  next  month. If  you  think  that  you  have  a  swarm  of  bees  and  need  someone  to   have  a   look,  please   check  the  website  www.planetepassion.eu   to  find  your  local  beekeeper  before  phoning  us.     But  if   you  need   to  contact  us  please  do  not  hesitate.   We  are  the  Dominey  family  and  we  live  between  Melle  and  Sauze-­‐ Vaussais   79190.  Contact   email:  dominey.michael@orange.fr    or   call:  05  49  07  79  78  (after  7pm)  or  06  69  67  67  06  (anytime).

If   you   can   help,   please   contact   Estelle   Deniaud   at   the   ‘Ornithological  Group  of  Deux-­‐Sèvres’  by  email: estelle@ornitho79.org.

Rendez-vous aux Jardins

Friday  May  31st,  Saturday  1st  and  Sunday  2nd  June  2013. The  garden  and  its  creators...

The   Ministry   of   Culture   and   Communication   invite   you   for   the   eleventh   consecutive   year,   to   visit   both   public   and   private   parks   and   gardens,   to   discover   the   wealth   and   enjoy   the   entertainment   that   will   be   reserved   throughout  the  first  weekend  of  June,  and  on  May  31st.

Poibers  (86)

The  new   edition  of  Rendez-vous aux Jardins  specifically  explores  the   theme  of  the  garden  and  its  creators.    Programming  raises  the  question   of   the   creation   for   the   garden   and   puts   designers   in   the   spotlight   whether   gardener,  designer,   owner,  art   theorist,  writer,  philosopher   or   painter. This  year,  in  commemoration   of  the  four-­‐hundredth  anniversary  of   the   birth   of  André  Le   Nôtre,  you     can  discover   many  other  artists,  such   as   Bühler   brothers,   Achille   Duchêne,   Edouard   André,   Albert   Kahn,   Gilles   Clement,   Louis   Benech,   Marie   Vaconsin,  Garouste...

Celles  (17)

To  find  a  selection  of  open  gardens  in  your  area,  please  visit  http://www.rendezvousauxjardins.culture.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

THE AMATEUR GARDENER

by Vanda Lawrence

If   I’d   written   this   a   week   ago   I   would   have   greeted   you   with   a   “Quack   Quack”   because   we   were   decidedly   waterlogged,   borderline   mildewed,  here   in   Secondigny.     However,   everything   comes  to  he  who  waits  and  yesterday  (mid-­‐April)  was  dry  so  I  was   at  last  able  to  get  into  the  garden  to  start  some  of  the  jobs  on  the   list.     Your   soil   might   be   a   bit   waterlogged   in   places   too,   but   gradually  the  potatoes  will  be  planted.     As  the  soil  warms  up  other   vegetable   plants   can   go   out   and   the   soil   can   be   prepared   for   sowing  pumpkins  and  other   vegetable  seeds.    Favourite  vegetable   and  salad  items  should  be  sown   every  couple  of  weeks  to  ensure   a   steady  supply  during  the  season.     Remove  runners  from  strawberry  plants   if  you  do  not  need  them   for   new  plants.     This  will  keep  the  parent   plants  growing  strongly.     Remember  that  strawberries  only  have  two  or   three  years  of  good   fruit   production,   so   if   your   plants   are   getting   old   pot   on   the   runners  ready  for  next  year. Young  herb  plants  are  readily  available  now.     Why  not  plant  them   in   decorative   tubs  by  the   back  door   so   they  are  easily  accessible   when  cooking,  even  if  it’s  pouring  with  rain. Garden  Centres   are  full   of  lovely  things  to  plant  so,   if  you  are  like   me  with  a  new  garden  to  work  on,  you  will   be  in  seventh   heaven!     I’m   planning   a   laurel   hedge  along  one  boundary,   simply  because   it’s   evergreen,  and   hope   to  make  my  own  plants  from  cuttings.     A   lady  on  the  LIFT  (Ladies  in   France   Together)  Gardening  Group   tells   me   that   if   you   put   your   cuttings   in   a   container   of   water   with   a   piece   of   willow   the   chemical   released   from   the   willow   will   encourage   the   cuttings   to   root   without   using   hormone   rooting   powder  or  gel.      

Whilst   driving  around   delivering  to   clients   in  this   département   (as   well   as  dépt.  16  and   17)  I  have  noticed  the  vast   amount  of   trees  that   are  being  cut  down  for  firewood.     I  appreciate  that  the   wood  is  an  essential  fuel  for  most  of  us,  but  they  do   not  seem  to   re-­‐plant,  they  leave  the  ground  open   for  all  types   of  saplings  to   grow  rather  than  re-­‐plant   a  decent   replacement.    We   need  all   the   trees  we  can   plant,  so   if  you   have   some  land,  plant   a   few   trees,  native  or  ornamental. I  have  a  range  of   tree  saplings,  ranging  in  price  from  10€  to  25€,   silver  Birch,  Acers,   wild  cherries,  plus  many  ornamentals,  ready   for  planting  NOW.    Discount  on  quantities. For  more  information,  please  call  me  on  05  46  33  66  17.                        Michael  Curtis

As   spring  bulbs  finish   flowering   give   them   a  good   feed   to   build   them  up   again  ready  for   next  year.    The  leaves  should   be  left  to  die   back  naturally  giving  the  plant  time  to  make  the  most  of  sunlight  to   produce  sugars  that  replenish  and  increase  the  size  of  the  bulb.     Forsythia  has  given  us  a  lovely  show  again  this  year.     Cut  back  after   flowering   to   keep   a   good   shape   and   give   room   for   any   nearby   perennials  to   make   new  growth.     Take   this   opportunity  to   stake   herbaceous  perennials  while  you  have  easy  access  and  also   tie  up   your   climbing  plants  too,  to  avoid  wind  damage  and  broken  stems.     Once   these   jobs   are   done   you   can   fill   up   empty   spaces   with   summer   bedding   plants   and   then   mulch   everything   to   retain   moisture  and  discourage  weeds. Don’t   forget   the   birds!     They   are   busy   nesting  and   raising  their   families   so  food  ‘on  tap’  is  a  bonus.     Apparently  Blue  Tits  visit  their   nests  up  to  900  times  each  day  to  feed  their  young!     Wild  bird  seed   mix   for   bird   feeders   attracts   most   birds   while   Blue   Tits   love   sunflower   seeds   and   fat   balls.     Feeding  stations   should  ideally  be   near   cover   but   if  there   is   risk  from  cats   allow  about   2   metres   all   round. One  last  thing  this  month  is  to  mention  Processionary  Caterpillars.     Their   nests  in  pine  trees  look  like  clumps  of  cotton  wool.     When  the   weather  warms  up  the  caterpillars  come  down  from  these  nests  in   a  long  line,  nose  to  tail,  ready  to  pupate  just  below  the  soil  surface.     Their   hairs   cause   extreme   irritation   and   can   also   be   quite   dangerous  to  dogs  and  cats,  so  please  be  aware.     Bye for now, I’m off to plant up my tubs... See you next month.

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY some  extra   fruit  trees   this   year.     As  well   as  the  fruit   it  gives   the   chickens   somewhere   to   scratch   around   underneath   and   some   extra  protection  from  the  sun.     Any  excess  fruit  and  vegetables  are   fed  to  the  pigs!

Life on the Farm...

by  Peter  &  Jenny  Sebborn.

At   last,  some  sunshine   and  warm,  dry  weather.    After  the  down-­‐ pour  last  week  it  seemed  like   spring   would  never   arrive.    At   least   we  haven’t  had  to  contend  with  the  snow  they  have  had  in  the  UK. There  are   definite  signs  that  spring  is  on  the  way.     Fruit  trees  and   hedgerows  starting  to  show   their   blossom  -­‐   lets   hope  it   stays  on   the  trees   this  year   (last   year   it   all   got   washed   away  and  we  had   very   little  fruit).     Also  the  rhubarb   and  asparagus  are   showing,   a   really  good  sign  that   summer  cannot  be  that  far  away.    Our  20  000   litre  water   pillow  is  full  to  the  brim,  a  handy  reserve  for   the  drier   (fingers  crossed)  months  ahead. The  lambs  and  piglets  are  all  outside  enjoying  the  fresh  air.     It  still   makes  me  smile  when  I  see  the  lambs  bouncing  around  in  the  field.     Now  the   lambs   are  all   a  few  weeks   old   we  have  been   tending  to   the  needs  of  the  sheep.     We  set  aside   a  day  to   trim  the  feet  of  the   ewes.  It   is  surprising  the   amount   of  growth  on  the   hooves   of   the   sheep  especially  when  they  are  kept  on  softer  ground.     In  the  latter   part   of   pregnancy  we  don’t   like  to  be  turning  them  over   or   cause   them  any  stress   as  it   may  affect   the  unborn   lambs.    We  also  gave   the   lambs   their   medication   for   the   prevention   of   Coccidiosis,   wormed  them   and  put   in   the   ear   tags  which   shows   their   unique   registration   number.     The   tags  always  seem  enormous  on  a  small   lamb.     The   first   of   the   lambs   have   been   weaned   and   sold   for   fattening.     The  new  owners  wanted   them  as  lawn  mowers  for   the   summer,  providing  the  lambs  with   free  food,  then  later   on   in   the   year  for  them  to  put  in  the  freezer. Baaaarbara,  the  ewe   with   mastitis,  is   still   recovering  despite   the   vet   telling  us   there   was  no  hope  and  she  wouldn’t   survive.    She  is   doing  well  and  still  has  her   udder  but  we  have   been   told  it   could   well   fall   off.     Her   lambs   (Jack   and   Jill)   had   to   be   bottle   fed   as   Baaaarbara   was  unable   to   feed   them.     An   interesting   and   quite   frightening  side  effect   to  the  medication  is  something   called  wool   break.    Baaaarbara’s  fleece  started   to  fall  out  in  clumps...she  looks   a  bit  raggedy  in  places,  but  on  the  mend.

After   a   lot   of  deliberation   we   have   also  decided   to   get   a  milking   goat.  There  are  several  reasons  behind  the  decision... The  milk  will  not  only  be  used  for  us  but  will  also  be  used  to  bottle   feed   any   orphan  baby  lambs,   hopefully  saving  a  fortune  on  milk   powder.    Any  excess  we  can  either  make  into  cheese,  yoghurt  or  ice   cream,  or   if   we  don’t  have  the  time,   that   too  can   go  to  the  pigs.   (Apparently  it  is  not  a  good  idea  to  give  the  pigs  too   much  as  it  can   taint  the  pork  giving  it  a  milky  taste). The  goat  will  come   with   one  of   her  two   male  kids  so   we  hope  to   breed  him  with  Boff  (our  other   goat)  next  year.    It  also  means  we   will  have  milk  straight  away.      Some  people  have  said  that  a  milking   animal   is  a  tie   and   you  won’t  get   a   day  off  or  have  a  holiday.    But   with   about   150   animals   and   poultry   already,   we   don’t   get   the   luxury   of   time  off   anyway  so  we   might   as   well   go   the  whole  hog     and  have  a  milker. The   next   project   is   to   make   a  milking   stand   to   make   life   easier   when  milking  the  goat.    There  are   plenty  of  designs,  thanks  to  the   wonder  of  Google.    I  will  let  you  know  how  I  get  on  next  month. We   have   two   incubators  full   of   duck  and   chicken   eggs   and  have   been  promised  some  goose  eggs  in  the  near  future.  Hopefully  the   hatch  rate  will  be  good. Well  I’m  off   to  sit  on  my  tractor   -­‐  I’m  not  going  to  do  any  work  I   just   like   sitting   on   the   thing!     Enjoy  the   sunshine,   just   watch   those   weeds   grow   and   don’t   forget   to   give   your   pigs   a   wallow   to   keep   cool   in,  or   at   least   put   suntan   lotion   on   their   pink   ears   -­‐  no   I   am  not   kidding! See   you   next   month   for   more   ‘Life  on  the  Farm’. Peter  &  Jenny  Sebborn.  Breeders  of  pigs,  lambs  and  poultry.   La  Gauteliere,  79220,  Pamplie.    Tel:  05  49  28  38  57.

Bianca  the   Bantam  only  hatched  one  chick,  but  at  least  it  is  one  of   her  own   kind  and  it   makes  a  change  from  the  guinea  fowl  and  duck   she  hatched  for  us  last   year.     The   guinea  fowl  has   now  joined  the   rest   of   the   flock   but   can  still   be  found   popping   in  to  say  hello  to   mum.  Easter  also   brought   us   one  baby  rabbit  and  Dotty  our   other   mum,  who  always  produces  the  cutest   baby  rabbits  in  an   array  of   colours,  will  be  having  her  litter  early  May. The   tractor   has   been   earning   its  keep   ploughing  the  veggie  plot   and  towing  the  trailer   round  the  farm.  Until  it  arrived  we  used  the   car  to   tow  the  trailer  but  with  all  the  rain  and  mud  the  tractor  has   really  proved  its  worth.    I  have  been  told  that  every  time  I  sit  on  the   tractor  I  have  a  silly  grin  on  my  face  –  that’s  boys  and  their  toys  for   you! The   garden   has   been   giving   us   some   wild   garlic   which   tastes   delicious.   We   have  planted   a   little   bit   of   everything   in   the   poly-­‐ tunnel   to   try  and   give   us  an   earlier   crop.     We   have  also   planted   Page 24


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French Life, Food & Drink... French Village Diaries We   are   now   at   the   beginning   of   the   main   growing   and   harvesting   season,  an  exciting  time  for  me.

by  Jacqueline  Brown.

The   fruit   trees  in   our   orchard   are   heavy   with   blossom   and   bees,   a   perfect   combination   for   a   good   harvest   of   cherries,   plums   and   pears,   I   hope.   We   have   put   in   some   heavy   work   when   the   weather   has   permitted   and   the   potager  is  now  relatively  weed   free,  ready   and  waiting  for   the  courgette,  tomato  and  pepper  seedlings  that  we  are  nurturing   in   the   greenhouse.     Local   legend   says  never   to   plant   out   tender   seedlings  until  after  the  Saints  de  Glace  in   mid  May  which  we  tend   to   follow   too,   mainly   because   by   then   the   courgettes   will   be   bursting   out   of   their   nursery   pots   in   the   greenhouse   plus   the   weather   usually   makes   gardening   feel   more   fun   and   less   of   a   chore. We   do   have   a   habit   of   focussing   on   the   summer   crops   despite   saying   every   year   we   must   try   harder   for   a   selection   of   winter   vegetables  as  well.     Maybe  this  year  will  be  my  lucky  leek  year!    To   fill   the   early   season   gap   I   have   been   foraging   the   hedgerows   around   Melle   and   celebrating  the  first   harvest   of   the   year   –   the   wild   garlic,   something  I  look   forward   to   every   spring.     Found   in   shady   woodland   it   thrives   along   the   old   railway   embankment   where   it’s   wide   green   leaves   and   star-­‐like   white   flowers   form   a   carpet   as  far   as  the   eye  can   see.  It   truly  is   a  beautiful   sight,  and   especially  when  the  dappled  sunlight   filters  through  the  first   leaves   on   the   trees  above   and   the   early   bluebells  join   in  too.  The   wild   garlic  is  fairly  easy  to  recognise   as  once  picked   the  leaves  have   an   unmistakable   sweet   garlic   smell,   but   please   do   always   check   unknown  plants  before  eating  them  and  always  wash  any  foraged   leaves  thoroughly  too. I  have  a  few  favourite  things  to  make  with  my  foraged   leaves  and   top   of   the   list   is   pesto   made   with   our   walnuts   harvested   last   autumn  and   olive  oil.     Place   2   or   3   generous   handfuls   of  shelled   walnuts  (or   more  traditionally  pine  nuts)  in  a   food  processor   and   blend  until  quite  fine.  Add  a  very  generous   bunch  of  washed   wild   garlic  leaves  and  blend  to  chop  them.    Then  add  enough  olive  oil  to   mix  to   desired   pesto  consistency  -­‐   sort   of   wet,   but   not  too   wet.   This  can  now  be  used  fresh  with   some  grated  Parmesan  cheese  to   make  a  perfect  pasta  sauce,  or   frozen   in  ice  cube  trays  and  added   to   soups  and  pasta  dishes  throughout  the  year.     I  also  make  some   batches  with   a  couple  of  fresh  or  frozen  chillies  chopped  with  the   nuts  to  give  a  pesto  with  a  real  zing. If   nuts   are  not  your   thing  a  garlic   herb   oil   to  drizzle   over   salads,   soups  or  steamed  vegetables  is  another  delicious  way  to  use  them.   Just  blend  the  leaves  with  olive  oil.    You  can  also  use  the  leaves  as   you   would   baby   spinach   and   wilt   in   a   pan   with,   for   example   lardons,  onions  and  mushrooms.  

You  can  read  more  from  Jacqui  and  find  her  favourite  recipes   at  www.frenchvillagediaries.com.

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What a Mouth, What a North and South. by  John  Sherwin. I  was  on   the   dog  and   bone   with   my  mate   Michael   (Caine)  the  other  day.     It’d  been  a  while  and  we  were   catching  up,  like  you  do:  Shakira’s  chilblains,  the  2012   Bordeaux  en  primeur,  bloody   vet  bills  –   my,  how  we   laughed.     We  talked  also,  as  on   so  many  occasions,  of   the   role   of   the   oral   cavity   in   the   process   of   wine-­‐ tasting,  and  that  led  both  of  us  to   reminiscences  of  our  old  mate   Tommy  (Steele)  and  his  revival  of  the  Edwardian  music  hall  number   which   entitles  this   piece.  Then  Mikey  told  me   something  I  didn’t   know  –  he  likes   to  do  that.    Turns  out  that  Tommy  was  one  of   the   first   Masters  of  Wine  (MW)  in  England.  Didn’t  make  a  big  fuss  of  it   so’s   not   to  put   off  the  teeny-­‐boppers.  His  dissertation,  completed   just   after  the  recording  of  ‘What   a  Mouth’,  was  on  the  wines  of  the   northern  and  southern   Rhone,  in  homage  to  the  song.    Or  maybe   vice  versa. The  mighty  Rhone  river   links  all  the  region,  but  as  Tommy  noted,   the  northern  and  southern  Rhone  are  very  different   animals.  The   north  end   stretches  from  Vienne  to  St   Péray  and   is  a  topographical   sliver  of  steep,  vicious  vine  growing   terrain  looming  over  the  river.   With  its  continental  climate   of  harsh  winters  and  warm   summers,   great  wines  are  made.    This  is  the  ‘quality’  end  of  the  valley,  with   wines  that   can   rival  the  best   of  Bordeaux   or  Burgundy.    Syrah   (or   Shiraz)   is   the   only  red   grape   variety   allowed   for   reds,   but   some   white  grapes  are  allowed  to  be  added.     Areas  to   look  for   on   the   label   are,   from   north   to   south,   Cote-­‐Rotie,   Condrieu,   Chateau   Grillet,   Saint-­‐Joseph,   Crozes-­‐Hermitage,   Hermitage,   Cornas,   and   Saint-­‐Péray. The   reds   of   the  northern   Rhone   have   signature  aromas  of  green   olive  and  smokey  bacon  and,  as  you  head  south,  hints  of  liquorice.   They  best  accompany  robust  food:  chilli   con  carne;  devilled  kidneys   –   you   get   the   drift.  The   whites   can   be   from  the   grape  varieties   Viognier,  Marsanne   and  Roussanne.     Viognier   is  the   best   known   and  most  intriguing:  bouquet  of  apricot?  peaches?  pears?    Match  it   with  lobster,  crab  or  mussels;    roast  chicken. Think  of  the  Rhone  as  an  exclamation  mark:  the  north   is  the  thin   down  stroke,  and  there  really  is  a  viticultural   gap  before….the  big   blob  at  the   end  which  is  the   southern  Rhone.    We’re  looking  at  an   ink  blot  between  Montélimar   to  Avignon,  and  the  region  takes   on  much  more  of  a  Mediterranean  feel   with  mildish  winters   and   hot  summers.    Reds  are  from  a  take-­‐your-­‐pick  of  Syrah,   Grenache,  Mourvèdre,  Carignan  and  Cinsault  –  rich  in  tannins   with   aromas   of   black  fruit,  prune,   chocolate,   undergrowth.   Whites  are  also  typically  blends  from  Ugni  Blanc,  Roussanne,   Bourboulenc,  Picpoul,  Clairette  and  Viognier. Twenty-­‐odd  years  ago,  the  southern  Rhone  made  a  lot  of   rather   mediocre  wine.  Standards  have   improved  mightily.     Look  out   for  Cairanne  and  Gigondas   reds,  and  the  lovely   sweets  from  Beaumes-­‐de-­‐Venise. The  southern  reds  will  go  well  with  stews,  game,  any  red   meat.     The  whites,  chilled,  are   a  lovely  summer  wine  and   will   be  happy  with   salads   and  white  meats  with   a   light   sauce.   And  I  bet  you  didn’t  know  that.

John Sherwin, French Wine Tours. Tel: 02 51 66 13 05 Email: johnsherwin@orange.fr ~ www.french-wine-tours.com

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French Adventures... Zena’s  Story... Zena   Sabestini   has   spent   most   of   her   adult   life   here   living   near   Bressuire.    She  came   in  1996  with  husband  Mark,  describing  her   new   home   like   ‘Stonehenge’....   no   running   water,   electricity   or   windows! She  had  to  rough  it  back  then,  although  she  says  they  spent  their   first   few   years  “living  the  good   life”,  enjoying   the   weather,  doing   the   garden   and   making   furniture   which   they   sold   when   they   returned  to  the  UK  to  work  for  short  periods. Hard  as  it  may  be  to  believe  now,  one  of  Zena's  initial   problems  was   one  of   isolation.     There  were   a  few  British  living  in  the  area  and,   with  the  age  gap,  she  had  nothing  in  common  with  them.     Luckily,   she   made   friends   with   a   French   farmer's   wife,   Denise,   and   she   spent   many  happy  hours   in   her   kitchen,  watching  the   life   on   the   farm,  picking  up  French   words  and   phrases  from  the  steady  stream   of  people  who  passed  over  the  threshold  of  the  welcoming  kitchen.     Things  started  to  feel  like  home  at  last. Zena   and   Mark  spread   their   time   between  the  UK  and   France  to   make  a  living,  but  it  was  not  long  before   Zena  wanted  to  put   down   roots  and  start  a  family.     They  set  up  their   building  business  making   local  enquiries  for  work,  and  slowly  work  started  to  trickle  in.   Soon,  their   first   child   Louis   was   born   and   they   were   now   a   real   family.     She  started  to  teach  English  to   local  French  people,  moving   on  to  teach  it  in   her  son's  school  as  well.    Life  seemed   really  good.     Zena   was   keen   to   have   another   child   and   it   was   during   her   pregnancy   for   Sophie,   her   daughter,   that   things   started   to   go   wrong. She  complained  of  walking  difficulties  at  her  seven  month  check  up   and   before  she   knew   it,  she  was   having  a   brain   scan   to   find  out   what   exactly   was   wrong   with   her.     Zena   didn't   welcome   the   prospect  of   spending  time  in  hospital  with  a  new  born  and  young   child  to  look  after.

over   a  thousand  members  all   over   France   and  offers  daily  advice   and  support  to  its  very  grateful  members. Along  with   the   founder   members,  Zena  felt   that   she   would  have   had  a  much  easier  start  in  France  with  a  network  like  this,  and   felt   that  it  would  benefit  others  and  help  them  lay  down  roots     like  she   did,  but  with  a  guiding  hand  from  those  who  had  walked  the  path   before  them.   It   is  quite   amazing  that  as   a  busy  mother,  she   finds  time   to   be   a   very  active   member  on  LIFT,  offering  her  advice  on  anything  from   setting   up   a   business  to   where  to   buy  animal   food  –  you  name   it,   Zena  has  the  answer.  If  she  doesn't  know,  she  knows  someone  who   does! While   she  found  family  life  and  LIFT  very  satisfying,  she  was   now   looking   for   a   challenge   outside   the   home,   and   last   year   was   approached  by  Leggett   Immobilier   to   join   their   team.     She  recalls   loving  it  instantly  and  getting  a  real   buzz  from  going  out  to  visit  new   people   and   helping   them   buy   or   sell   their   home.   Her   bubbly     personality  is  ideally  suited  to  this  type  of  work. There   cannot  be   many  more  people  here  better  equipped  to  offer   sound   advice   on   settling   in   France,   so   here   are   Zena's   tips   for   making    a  success  of  your  new  life  in  France:                  

Learn  the  language! Try  to    integrate    with  the  locals. Join  local  associations,  groups  and  stay  active Stop  comparing  France  to  England,  they  are  different! Try  and  find  work  as  it  keeps  you  active.

And,  what  are  the  final  words  from  the  lady  herself?    Simply  this: “I  love  my  life  here  and  I    wouldn't  change  a  thing!”

Sophie  was  born  a  month  early  and   as  her  symptoms  subsided,  like   us  all,  Zena  decided  that  despite  concerns  of  the  doctors  she  would   continue  as  normal.     After   all,  she   must   have  been   OK  as  she   felt   fine. She  put  down  the  constant  fatigue  to  the  fact  she  was  looking  after   two   young   children,  but   a   couple   of   years   later   a   friend   noticed   some  alarming  symptoms  and   before  she  knew  it,  she   was  back  in   hospital  where  she  stayed  for  a  few  weeks.

Left: Zena with husband Mark, Below: Zena’s family

After  many  tests,   she   was  diagnosed  as   having  MS,   and  her   world   as  she  puts  it,  started  to  fall  apart.    Mark  had   his  business  to  run   and   two  very  young  children  to  care  for,  so  reinforcements  in   the   form  of  Zena's  mum  were  called  in  from  the  UK  to  help  out. She  had   to   take   medication   that  had   severe  side  effects,  but  very   slowly  her   condition   stabilized   and  she  was  able  to  stop   taking   it.   Hard   as   it   is   to   believe,   during   this   time   she   also   had   a   breast   cancer   scare   and   a   major   thyroid   operation,   both   of   which   had   positive  outcomes. Thanks   to   the  support   of   her   family   and   friends,   after   a   difficult   four   years  she  was   able  to  return   to   her   post  as  “The  rock   of   the   family”. Zena   is   known   to   many   of   us   as   one   of   the   faces   on   the   local   networking  group  LIFT   (Ladies  In  France  Together),  which  has  been   running  successfully  for   a  number   of  years   on   Facebook.     It   has  

Written  by  Helen  Aurelius-­‐Haddock.    http://haddockinthekitchen.wordpress.com   or  contact  Helen  by  email  at:  helenah@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Motoring... Diesel is No Longer a Dirty Word... by  Helen  Tait-­‐Wright

Although  mass  popularity  for   the   diesel  engine  in  road  cars   is  only   relatively  recent,  it  may  surprise  you   to  learn  that  diesel  technology   is  well  over  a  century  old. The   diesel   engine  itself  was  designed   by  Paris  born  Rudolf   Diesel,   and   patented   in  1892,  and  the  turbo  charger  fitted  to  most  modern   engines  was  actually  invented  at  the   turn  of  the  Twentieth  century,   and  patented  in  1905. Alfred  Büchi,  the  Swiss  engineer   who  developed  the  system,  noted   the   improvement   in   efficiency   that   his   device   brought   to   the   standard  diesel  engine,  and  these  are  still  enjoyed  today.    Initially  the   turbo  was   used  in   large  static,  locomotive  and  marine  engines,  and   then  went  into  trucks  in  the  mid  50‘s. Although   diesel   engines   had   been   used   extensively   in   light   commercial   vehicles   since   the   1930’s,   they   weren’t   popular   for   cars.  Incredibly  it  wasn’t  until   1978  that  the  first  production  car  with   a  turbo  diesel  engine,  the  Peugeot  604,  came  onto  the  market. Through   the   early   80’s   more   manufacturers   joined   the   diesel   revolution,  but  despite  their  economy  the  engines  were   noisy  and   produced  a  lot  of  black  soot,  and  gained  a  bad  reputation  amongst   buyers.    The  French   manufacturers  started   to   change   this  opinion   with  the  1988  Citroen  BX  and  then  the  1989  Peugeot  405.    They  gave   power   and   refinement   approaching   petrol   engine   standards   and   started   the   diesel   boom  in  Europe.     Modern   car   and  truck  diesel   engines  produce  higher   power   outputs  and  lower   emissions   levels   than  petrol  engines. Today,  leading  the  way   in   the  development   of   cleaner   and   better   diesel   engines   is  German  manufacturer   Audi.     In   2006  they  made   history  by  winning  the  Le  Mans  24hrs  with  their  diesel  powered  R10,   on  its  maiden   run  at   the   event,   and   put   diesel   power   firmly  in   the   headlines.

Photo:theblogofcars.files.wordpress.com

It  is  instantly  notable  to  anyone  visiting  the  race  these  days  that   the   Audi   cars   are  not   only  very  quick,  but  so  much  quieter  than   their   normally  aspirated   competitors  -­‐  a  far   cry  from  the  sluggish,  dirty   cars  of  the  early  80’s.   Diesel  is  a  desirable  option  in  2013: • Greater   engine   efficiency  means   less   fuel   used,  therefore  more   miles  per  gallon,  and  the  lower  price  of  diesel  in  France  makes  this   even  more  attractive. • They  have  no  high  voltage  electrical  ignition  system,  resulting  in   high   reliability   and   easy   adaptation   to   damp   environments   (particularly  useful  recently!!) • The  life  of  a  diesel  engine  is   generally  about  twice  as  long  as  that   of  a  petrol  engine.   • Diesel  is  a  safer  fuel   than  petrol  as  it  will  not  explode  and  does  not   release  a  large  amount  of  flammable  vapour.   • Today   the   cars   that   produce   the   lowest   CO2/km   in   emissions,   lower   than   hybrids,  are   the   most   advanced   compact   European   diesel  cars.

22nd & 23rd June ! Le Mans 2013 ~

As  confirmed  petrol   heads,  our  household  is  a  relative  latecomer  to   the   diesel  party,  but  we  now   run  an   Audi   A6  quattro  Avant,  and   a   Golf  Tdi  as  everyday  transport. To  say  we  are  bowled  over  by  the  Audi  would  be  an  understatement.   The  performance  is  very  good,  the  SatNav  simply  brilliant,  and  I  love   getting   a  600mile  +  range  after  I’ve   filled  up.  I  still   love  my  Jag,  but   he’s  now  reserved  for  special  occasions!

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

R’s READE T REPOR

! BEWARE !

by Steve Young

On   our  way  through  France   to  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  last   month   (dual   carriageway   about   five   miles   before   Chartres),   we   overtook   a   Mercedes   with   a   British   registration  plate.     It   then  overtook  us  with  it's  hazard   lights   flashing   and   an   arm  waving   us  down   as  it   pulled   onto   the   hard   shoulder.    Thinking  that  he  had  seen  something  wrong  with  our  car,  I   pulled  up  behind   them  on  the  side  of  the  highway.     A  man  got  out   and  came  up  to  the  drivers  window,  he  told  me  (in  halting  English)   that  he  was  running  out  of  petrol  and  his  credit   cards  didn't  work  in   France   -­‐-­‐   the   bank   had   summarily   stopped   them   -­‐-­‐   I  know   this   happens  after   what   occurred  with  my  sons  in  northern   France  on   their  way  down  to  see  us  a  few  years  ago. However,  he  said   his  wife  and  small   baby  were   in  the  car   so  asked   him  what  he  wanted  ...  he  said  “100  euros  today,  I  pay  you  back  500   later  ...  take  my  watch,  my  ring  my  necklace  ...".    I  was  about  to  drive   off   when  he  thrust  his  engraved  signet  ring  and  a  heavy  gold  chain   into  my  hand! After  much  to'ing  and  fro'ing  and  pleading  -­‐-­‐  I  reckon  he  was  Turkish   -­‐-­‐  we  gave  him  50  Euros  (really  just  to  get  rid  of  him).  He   wanted   more,  however,  he  wasn't  getting  any  more,  and  he  promised  to  pay   us  when  he  got  back  to   London.    Anyway,  we  exchanged  business   cards  and  he  eventually  drove  off  with  his  50  Euros,  went  off  onto  a   side  road  to  a  petrol  station  and  we  went  on  our  way  with  a  ring  and   a  necklace  in  the  car. He  apparently  owns  a  car  import/export  business  in  Germany,  or   so   his  expensive   laminated   business   card   says.     If   it   was   a  scam   I   couldn't  see  the  downside,  it  was  a  lot  of  trouble  for  50  Euros.    I  had   kept  the  car  in  first  gear,  just   in  case  I  needed  to  put  my  foot  down.   You  can  never  be  sure  with  the  stories  you  read  about  hi-­‐jacking  on   the  roads  in  France  ...  but  he  had  the  ring  of  truth  and  was  obviously   very  desperate. I  now  know  this  IS  a  scam  and  it  seems  that  many  people  have  been   caught   out   in   this  way.     I  won't   be  caught   again   however.     The   address   on   the   business  card   was   spelt   slightly  wrong,  though   a   genuine   address   after   searching   on   Google   Earth,   the   phone   numbers   were   spurious   as   was   the   email   address.   I  have   since   discovered  the  registration  plates  were  also  false. This   website   says   it   all:   http://www.longrider.co.uk/blog/ 2009/03/10/the-­‐petrol-­‐scam.     Had   I  spent   longer   looking  at   the   card  I  would  have  noticed  the  English   phone   number   was  an  0850   number  which  of  course  cannot  be  dialed  from  outside  the  UK. I  offer  this  story  to  any  travellers  coming  through  France  this  year  to   be  aware!     Even  though  we  thought   we  are  too  clever  by  half  to  be   caught  in  a  scam,  we  were.    Seems  a  lot  of  work  for  50   Euros,  but   then  I  don't  know  how  much  he  has  taken  from  others  in  this  way.

Page 30


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

4L TROPHY –

MCS RACING

Hello!     If   you   have   read   any   of   my   previous   articles,   you   will   remember   that  we  were   taking  part  in  the  Renault  4L  Trophy  2013   and   on   our   way   to   Morocco   to   donate   50kgs   of   equipment   to   schools. Well,  to   follow  up  -­‐  we  drove  for   three   days   across  the  desert  to   Merzouga,  where  we  gave   the  equipment   to  the  ‘Children   of   the   Desert’   along  with   1437   other   Renault   4L’s.     In   total   12   tons   of   equipment  was  donated. Having   camped   in   the   desert   we   had   only   two   days   to   get   to   Marrakech.     Much   of  the   camping  time   was  “car   talk”   -­‐  how  to   make  repairs  to  the  cars  to  enable  us  to  continue  the  journey.... We  spent   a  lot  of  time   getting  stuck  in  the  sand  and   digging  our   way   out   with   other   Renault   4L   cars;   it   was   a   real   team   effort.     When  we  finally  got  to  Marrakech  and  realised   how  dangerous  the   roads   were,   I  decided  I   did   not   want   to  use  my  Renault  4L!    The   easiest   solution   was   to   use   taxis   but   interestingly,   the   law   in   Morocco  is  6  passengers  in  a  4  seater  car!

For  a  full  list  of  our  advertising  rates,   please  phone  05  49  70  26  21    for  an   advertising  pack  or  download  from  our  website:   www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

I   made   some   great   friends   along   the   journey,   had   a   great   adventure,  loved  riding  a  camel   in   the  desert   and  the   quad  bikes   were   even  better!    To   compete  in  the  Renault  4L  Trophy  2013  and   to  drive  6000kms  was  an  experience  I  will  never  forget.   If  anyone  has  any  questions,  or  any  students  between  the   ages  of   18-­‐26   are  thinking  of  taking  part   next  year,  please   do  not  hesitate   to  contact  me. Keenan  Dominey, Tel  :  06  29  72  33  94  ~  Email:  mcs-­‐racing@sfr.fr

Find the Cheapest Fuel for Your Vehicles If you would like to keep tabs on which local fuel supplier is offering the best price for your chosen fuel type, just visit this government run website:-

www.prix-carburants.gouv.fr. Simply select your department on the map, your chosen fuel type, and click the ‘Chercher’ button to search for the results. Happy Searching and Saving!

Page 31 31 Page


THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Communications... Selecting and Buying a New PC Part  2  -­‐  Operating  Systems

by  Ross  Hendry

Last  month  I  looked  at  the  range  of  hardware  available  and  gave  you   some  indication  of   their  cost.     This  month  I  would   like  to   consider   how   you   use   your   PC   and   look   at   mobile   computing   and   the   operating  systems  available  for  "Tablet"  PCs  in  a  bit  more  detail.  

What is an operating system or OS?

The  operating  system  on  your  PC,  tablet   or  mobile  phone  is  the  very   basic   software   which   allows   your   device   to   operate.     It   brings   together   the   hardware   chips  and  components  inside  your  device   so   they  all  work  in  conjunction   with  each   other.     The  operating  system   provides  all   of  the   basic   functionality  of  your   device,   for   example,   being  able  to  browse  the  internet  and  being  able  to  run  applications   and/or  on  your   phone  being  able  to  make  calls,  and  send  and  receive   text   messages.     Your   choice   of   operating   system   has   a   massive   impact  on  the  look  and  feel  of  your  device  and   the  applications  that   it’s  able  to  run. Most  of  us  have  been  brought  up   using  Microsoft   Windows  on  our   PCs,  which   we   are   familiar   with.     There   are   two   other   operating   systems  for   personal   computers,   Linux   and   Apple   OS.     Where  as   Linux   is   a  "Free",  open   source   OS  based   upon  Unix,  it   is  relatively   new  (1990s)  whereas  Apple  and  Microsoft  have  competed   since  the   1970s   to  get  our   business.   Interestingly,   Apple  were  the  inventors/ designers   of   what   we   now   call   Windows,   allegedly   copied   by   Microsoft! A   couple   of   newer   operating   systems   have   emerged   recently,   specifically  for   the  mobile  telephone   and  computing  market.    Apple   have   iOS  and  Google  nurtured  and  developed   Android,  also  a  Unix   based   operating   system,   after   initially   supporting   Android   Inc.     Google  purchased  them  in  2005.    These  two  operating  systems  were   designed  with  mobile  computing  in  mind,  such  as  the  type  you  do  on   your  mobile  telephone  and   tablet  computer.  Unlike  iOS,  Android   is   an  open  source  software  meaning  that  it  is  essentially  open  for   all  to   use  and  develop  free  of  charge.

Apple iOS.

The  most  successful  to  date  of  these  new  operating  systems  so  far  is   Apple's  iOS  and  it  is  easily  the  most  intuitive  to  use.    It  also  has  more   applications  (apps)   than   either   of  the  other   two   operating  systems   with  around  500,000  available.     Whilst  iOS  is  arguably  the  easiest  to   use,  it   is   the  least   business  orientated   of   the   three.     iOS  is   used   exclusively   on   Apple   products   from   the   iPhone   and   iPod   music   devices   through   to   the   very   successful   iPad   and   iPad2   tablet   computers.    It  was  not  designed  to   use  a  conventional  keyboard,  but   a  virtual  one  on  a  touch   screen.     It  should  be  mentioned  that   iOS  is  

the   least   "work   orientated"   of   the   operating   systems   in   the   traditional  sense.  

Android

Google   internally   developed   Android   as   a   free   alternative   to   iOS,   before  releasing  it  to  the  Smartphone  and  tablet  manufacturers  free   of   charge.     This  has   lead   to  the  Andriod  being  adopted  by  most   of   the   big   Smartphone   and   tablet   manufacturers   such   as   Sony,   Samsung,  LG,  HTC   and   Motorola.     These  companies  take  the  basic   Android   operating   system   provided   by  Google   and   add   their   own   customisation  before  installing  it  on  their  Smartphones  and  Tablets. Android  is  set  to  be  the  dominant  mobile  operating  system  from  the   middle-­‐end  of  2013  and  with  around  400,000 ��apps  available,  is  able   to   compete  with  iOS.      Although  the  Andriod  OS  is  not  as  slick  and   polished  as  the  Apple  iOS,  it  boasts  a  higher  proportion  of  free  apps   and  with  the  growth  of  its  market  share,  I  believe  it   will  overtake  the   iOS  for  apps  available  in  the  not  too  distant  future.   Google  have  two  well-­‐known  devices  using  the  Android  system,  the   Nexus  and  the  Google  Chrome  Book;  great  quality  devices.

Windows Phone / Windows 8

First  released  in  2010,  Windows  Phone  is  Microsoft's  entry  into   the   mobile   operating   system   market.   Windows   Phone   looks   just   like   Windows   8   using   Microsoft's  tile-­‐based   Metro   user   interface.  This   does   not   use   icons   such   as   the   other   two   operating   systems   but   active   tiles   that   show   content   and   spread   horizontally   across   the   screen,  designed   to  be  operated  via  the  touch   screen   technology.   Microsoft's   Windows   Phone   is   now   available   on   many   manufacturer's  phones  such  as  Nokia's  Lumia,  Samsung's  Omnia  and   also  offerings  by  Sony,  LG  and  HTC. Microsoft  also  have  a  tablet  PC   known  as  the  Surface.     This  has   a   conventional   keyboard  that  clips  to  the  tablet  and  is  exceedingly  slim   and  light.  There  are  only  around  40,000  apps  for  this  device  from  the     Windows  Phone  Marketplace.     The   range  of   applications  available   for   Windows   Phone   is   substantially  smaller   than  on  both  iOS  and   Android  but  this  is  likely  to  increase  as  Windows  Phone  matures  as   an  operating  system. There  is  no   right  or  wrong,  or  best   or   worst   operating  system;  each   of   them  have  their  merits.    It  is  simply  a  question  of  choosing  one   that  suits  your  needs  and  budget.  Next  month  we  can  consider  these     issues. Ross   Hendry   is   the   proprietor   of   Interface   Consulting   and   Engineering,  who  has  over  42  years  experience  in  Communications,   Computer  Technology  and  Direct  Marketing.   (See  advert  below  for  more  information).

Page 32


Colour Advert Size A or B, only 38€ per month or from 33,33€ per month for 12 months.

THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Contact  ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’ La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr or see our website: www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

organisations  and   links  to  other   useful  sites.     In  addition,  there  is   a   photo   gallery   where   you   can   browse   through   pictures  of   recent   events   and   also   have   a   look   at   the   entries   for   our   very   popular   calendar  competition. Get  Together  is  a  friendly  association  of  English   speakers  of  various   nationalities  who  have  made  their  home,  or  who  have  their  second   home,  in  the   Deux-­‐Sèvres  and  adjoining  departments.    Founded  in   1989,   the   primary   aims   of   the   association   are   to   provide   an   environment   where   members   are   able   to   socialise,   make   new   friends,  integrate  and  participate  in  the  social  life  of  France. The   group  organises  various   events  and   activities  throughout   the   year,  including  regular   walks   and  lunches,  book  swaps  and  history   group   meetings.     The  summer   months  are   particularly  busy  with   events  such   as  the  annual  GT  horse  racing  day,  summer  BBQ,  picnic   and  garden  party. Get   Together   has   recently   launched   a   new   website   at   www.getogether-­‐france.org  which   is   available   to   both   members   and   non-­‐members.     As   well   as   providing   information   on   forthcoming   events,   the   site   contains   details   of   welfare  

The   association   welcomes   new  members  and   offers  a  “try  before   you   buy”  scheme   for   anyone  considering   joining.     Non-­‐members   are   welcome   to   attend   up   to  two  events  to   help   them  to  decide   whether   to   become  Get   Together  members.     If  you  would   like  to   come  along  to   one  of  the  events  detailed   on   our   website,  please   contact   one   of   our   co-­‐ordinators  who   will   be  happy  to  reserve   a   place   for   you   and   provide   any   additional   information   you   may   require. For  more  informa+on,  contact  one  of  our  co-­‐ordinators: John  Buckley,  Email:  john.buckley@free.fr    or  Tel:  05  49  07  70  68       AnneHe  Green,  Email:  anneHe.jgreen@b+nternet.com  or   Tel:  05  49  33  41  90

Below: The Get Together Summer hog roast at l’Orangerie, La Mothe St Héray (picture by Tony Emmett)

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Useful English Language Numbers...

Cancer Support Deux-Sèvres:

05 49 64 59 96

French State health insurance advice line:

08 11 36 36 46

Elizabeth Finn Care (Grants and advice if in Financial need):

04 68 23 43 79

Orange Helpline:

09 69 36 39 00

EDF International Customer Service:

05 62 16 49 08

CLEISS (Social security advice between countries):

01 45 26 33 41

Association La Porte Ouverte (Open Door):

05 49 87 97 36 or www.opendoor-civray.com

Funeral Information (AFIF):

01 45 44 90 03 or www.afif.asso.fr

Passport Advice:

0044 208 082 4729 Annual  Subscription  Costs:  28€  within  France,  18€  UK  addresses. (Unfortunately  the  cheaper  ‘printed  papers’  rate  cannot  be  applied   to  addresses  within  France,  only  when  sending  abroad)   Full  Name: Postal  Address: Postcode:

Country:

Tel: Email: Please  make  cheques  payable  to  SARAH  BERRY.

Building & Renovation...

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"

Please  don’t  forget  to  mention ‘The Deux-Sèvres Monthly’ when  responding  to  an  advert.

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Short  editorials  can  be  offered  to  advertisers,   free  of  charge. Please  call  Sarah  to  find  out  more. Tel:  05  49  70  26  21

Contact  ‘The  Deux-­‐Sèvres  Monthly’

La  Bartière,  79130,  Secondigny. Telephone:  05  49  70  26  21   or  email:  info@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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Small B/W advert only 30€ ARTISANS  &  TRADESMEN... Do  you  have  any  top  tips  you  can   share  with  our  readers?       We  would  love  to  include  them   in  this  section! For  more  details,  please  see   the  ‘Written  Contributions’  page   on  our  website:   www.thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr

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Business, Finance & Property... Protect Your Savings by  Bradley  Warden,  Partner,  Blevins  Franks

Since the Cyprus banking hit the headlines we have been getting enquiries from people concerned about the safety of their bank deposits. Under an EU Directive, France’s Fonds de Garantie des Dépôt will refund bank depositors up to €100,000 should a bank fail. Savings above €100,000 the excess may be lost. In Cyprus the situation is a little different. e initial plan to tax even accounts under €100,000 was thankfully rejected. However, deposits over €100,000 in the Cyprus’ two largest banks will suffer heavy losses, possibly 50% or even more! e Cyprus disaster is a stark reminder that it is possible to lose money in the bank. So what can you do to protect your savings? Remember that cash is not a ‘risk free’ asset. Besides the possibility of institutional failure, interest rates have been at historic lows for years and inflation has been eroding the value of bank deposits.

It is important to diversify your capital over different assets. is reduces risk. You need to think of the cash as an investment asset in the same way as shares, bonds and property, and have suitable diversification to spread the risk. Seek advice on alternative arrangements where you can “ring-fence” your assets from the institution holding them, so that if it fails, your money is protected. Your investment decisions, whether to invest in shares, cash, or anything else, should be based on your personal objectives, circumstances, time horizon and risk tolerance. Speak to an experienced wealth manager like Blevins Franks to get tailored advice on the best asset allocation for you and asset protection.

To keep in touch with the latest developments in the offshore

world, check out the latest news on our website www.blevinsfranks.com

I would advise against keeping more than €100,000 in one banking group. Note that the compensation limit in the Channel Islands and Isle of Man is lower at £50,000, and they have a cap on the amount they will pay out.

Women’s business network When  Emma  Willett  met  Marlies  Colville  over   a  haircut,  they  soon  talked  about  the  perils  of   setting  up  a  business  in  France  as  they  had   both  just  joined  the  Auto  Entrepreneur  scheme.    One  as  a  mobile  hairdresser  and  the  other,  a  small  business  consultant  respectively. As  a  wife  and  mother  in  rural  France  this  seemed  even  more  of  a  challenge.  Therefore  the  idea  was  born  to  set  up  a  business  network  for   women  in  similar  situations  to  help  each  other,  exchange  ideas  and  experiences  and  to  open  networking  possibilities  (with  the  occasional   glass  of   wine  of  course!).     Also   planned   are  themed   seminars   (Social   Media,  how  to   market   your   business,   French   lessons)  and   other   events  aimed  at  helping  to  promote  women’s  business.    A  commercial  Trade  Fair  is  to  be  held  on  September  15th. If  you  are  self  employed   or  thinking  of  setting  up  a  business,  why  not  join  us?    We  are  based  around  the  north  of   the  Charente  but  have   local   groups   for   socialising   and   networking.   Please   find   out   more   information   on   www.lesdamesdefer.fr   or   contact   us   by   email:   lesdamesdefer@gmail.com

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2013  Tax  Declarations

by David Hardy

La  Déclaration  des  Revenus

The  month  of  May  in  France  always  means  tax  return  month.  The   French   tax   year   is   a   straightforward,   calendar   year   and   the   deadline   for   returning   your   completed   declaration   of   income   earned   in   2012   is   27th   May   2013.   Those   of   you   already   in   the   system   should   receive   your   partially   completed   form   (or   “préremplie”)  at  the  end  of  April.  

Wealth  Tax  (Impôt  de  Solidarité  sur  la  Fortune  or  “ISF”) One   major   change   that   will   affect   some   people   is   in   respect   of   ‘Wealth  Tax’  declaration.   From  this  year,  anyone   with  taxable  assets  of  between  €1,300,000   and   €2,570,000,   as   at   1st   January   2013,   will   declare   the   asset   figure  on  their  income  tax  return.   Only  those  with  more  than   €2,570,000   of  taxable  assets  will  have   to  continue  making  a  separate  wealth  tax  return  in  June.  

As  in  previous  years,  the  tax  authorities  have  granted  extra  time  for   those  who  make  their   declarations  on  line  at  www.impots.gouv.fr,   however,   the   amount  of  extra  time   given  will  actually  depend  on   the  number  of   the  department  you  live  in  e.g.  11th  June  for   depts.   79  and  85.   For  “first-­‐timers”  you  must  collect  a  tax  declaration   from  your   local   tax   office,  Centre  des  Impôts,  or   download  one   from  the   website   above.    If   you   have  moved  to   France   part   way  through   the  year,   you   will   only  declare   income   earned   since   the  date   of   “arrival”.     Any   tax   due   is   normally   collected   in   September.  Once   you   have   completed   your   first   tax   return,   you   can   complete   subsequent   returns  on  line  at  www.impots.gouv.fr.   What  forms  will  you  need? Whilst   the  Déclaration  des   Revenus  comprise   a   variety   of   forms,   according  to  your  circumstances,  here  are  some   of  the  main  forms   that  apply  to  expatriates: • Form  2042 This  is   the   main   tax   form,  which   those   of   you   already   in   the   system  will   receive,  where   you   should   declare   your   worldwide   income  and  gains. • Form  2042C  (“Complementary”) This   is   an   additional   form   which   is   required   for   a   number   of   situations,   including   where   you   have   received   income   from   furnished   letting  or   chambres  d’hôtes,  or   where  you   have  paid   tax  in  the  UK  that  needs  to  be  offset  against  French  tax. • Form  2047 This  is  an  additional  form  for   any  income  received  from  outside   of  France.  Foreign  income  must  be  declared  on  this  form,  as  well   as  on  Form  2042. • Form  3916 This   is   for   details   of   any   bank   accounts   situated   outside   of   France. What  to  declare? As   a   French   resident,   all   of   your   worldwide   income   and   gains   should  be  declared  on  your  French  tax  return.  Any  income  which  is   normally  taxed  out   of  France  e.g.  on  UK  public  sector   pensions  or   UK   rental   income,   will   still   be  used   to   calculate   your   overall   tax   liability.    The  Double   Tax  Treaty  will  ensure,  however,  that   you  do   not  pay  tax  twice  on  this  income,  but  these  figures  are  needed  to   calculate  the  rate  at  which  your  other  income  should  be  taxed.

David  Hardy  is  Regional  Manager  of  Siddalls  France,   Independent  Financial  Adviser,  specialising  in  tax,  inheritance,   pension  and  investment  planning  for  the  British  community  in   the  Poitou-­‐Charentes  since  1996.    Tel:  05  56  34  75  51 www.siddalls.fr End

What  exchange  rate  to  use? Some  tax   offices   tell   people  to   use  the  £/€   exchange  rate   at   the   end   of   the   year.   In   theory,  you   should   have   kept   a   note   of   the   exchange   rates   applicable   to   your   Sterling  based   income  as  you   received  it.  However,  for  income  which  is  received  regularly  such  as   a  pension,  for   instance,   the  authorities  will   accept   the   use   of   the   average   exchange   rate   for   the   year;   details   of   which   are   made   public  from  various  sources,  including  the  official   French  revenue   website  noted  earlier.

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Ask Amanda. April   2013   once   again   gave  expatriates   living   in   the   Deux-­‐Sèvres   the  opportunity  to   meet   financial   planners,   currency   exchange   specialists,   investment   experts   &   other   professionals   in   the   relaxed   environment   of   the  ‘ Tour  de  Finance’  in  Niort.   This  well   attended   event   gave  delegates   the   chance   to   ask   questions   about   their   financial   wellbeing   in   an   informative   but   informal   environment.     With   eight   different   companies   involved   there   was   a   wide   range   of   interesting   discussion  topics. A  question  I  am  often  asked,  which   readily  springs  to  mind  from   advertising  &  speaking  to  people  at  this  event  is:  

“I reviewed my finances several years ago, why should I revisit them now?” At  The  Spectrum  IFA  Group,  we  believe  that  putting  your  financial   affairs  in   order  is  just  the  start   of  our   service  to  you.    I  frequently   visit   people   who   have   not   had   their   investments   and   financial   plans  reviewed  since   they  first   came   to   France.    This  means   that   there  has  been  no  chance  for   them  to  outline  any  changes  to  their   circumstances  or  review  how  and  where  their  money  was  invested   and  if  those  investments  are  still  the  right  ones  for  them. Jupiter   Merlin   explained   during   the   ‘Tour   de   Finance’   how   the   economic   performance   of   the   major   trading   blocs   has   changed   year-­‐on-­‐year  for  the  last  10   years,  whilst  Michael  Lodhi,  Managing   Director,  of   The   Spectrum   IFA   Group   explained   how   the  cost   of   essential  commodities  had  increased  in  real  terms  over  the  last  5.   These   economic   changes   demonstrate   how   important   it   is   to   review  your  financial  position  every  year. A  review  allows  you  to  understand  your  current  position,  recognise   any  threats  to  your  wellbeing,  take  a  view  on  new  opportunities   &   make  appropriate  changes  to  your  investments. For  a  free  consultation   on   Inheritance   tax,   retirement   planning,     investments,   and   tax   efficient   buying   or   renovating   your   home;   or   if   you   would   like  to  review   y o u r  

c u r r e n t  

c i r c u m s t a n c e s ,   please  contact  me  on   the  numbers  below.

PRÉVOYANCE = FORESIGHT… Do you have it? Working  in  Insurance  I  see  people  in  different   walks  of  life  and  in   various   stages   of   their   lives,   each   with   their   own   needs   and   expectations.   For   that   reason,   we   are   covering   a   number   of   insurance  topics   to   help  you   understand   how  best   to  insure  and   protect  yourselves. If   you   are   self   employed,   this   particular  cover  is   invaluable  for   you. Being  self  employed   the  word   RSI  probably  means  something  to   you.  You   will   pay  your   monthly  or   quarterly  ‘cotisations’  to  your   caisse  under  the  umbrella  of  the  RSI  be  you  ‘artisan’,  ‘commerçant’   or  ‘profession  libérale’. If  you  become   ill   or  injured   and  unable  to  work  for  a  period,  your   cotisations  give  you   access  to   the  health   system  and   will  cover   a   certain  amount  of  the  cost  of  any  care  or  treatment,  the  rest  would   be   covered  by  your  ‘top-­‐up’  complémentaire  insurance,  but   have   you  thought  about  who  will  pay  your  salary,  your  lost  income?  …  It   is  unlikely  that  the  RSI  will. Depending   on   which  caisse  you  are  attached   to   -­‐  you   may   get   a   very  small   income,  which  could  be  up  to   a  maximum  50%  of   the   rate   ‘capped’   by   the   caisse.   If   you   are   registered   ‘profession   libérale’  you  will  receive  next  to  nothing.   Imagine   you   are   unable   to   work   for   2-­‐3   months,   how   will   you   manage?    The  shopping  still  needs  to  be  done  and  paid  for,  the  bills   too  as  a  minimum.     Add  to  that   the  cost  of  any  ongoing  projects,   renovation  work,  school  trips,  holidays,  problems  with  the  car…The   prévoyance  contract  is  designed  to  cover  you.     With  his  permission,  I  am  using  Bertrand’s  situation  as  an  example.   He  is  40  years  old  and   earns   1500€/month,  his  wife  works   part   time.    They  know  that  if  Bertrand  is  unable  to  work  due  to  illness  or   accident   for  any  length  of   time,  unable  to   bring   home   his  salary,   they  will  struggle.     He  would  receive  around  750€   from  his  caisse,   which  is  only  half  of  his  usual  income.    His  outgoings  are  not  halved   during  his  inability  to  work.   With  his  Gan  Attitude  Prévoyance  contract,  he  has  some  peace  of   mind.  He  pays  12,51€  per  month.     This  covers   him  for   a   capital  of   20  000€  in  the  event  of  his  death  and  for  300€/month  to  top  up  his   income,  which  would  balance  out  his  revenue  and   enable  them  to   keep  afloat. For  more  information  on  this   subject   please  contact  me  directly   at   the   office.   I   am   available   Monday   –   Friday,   9am-­‐12pm   and   2pm-­‐6pm.

Amanda  Johnson,  The  Spectrum  IFA  Group.  Tel:  05  49  98  97  46 Email:  amanda.johnson@spectrum-­‐ifa.com or “Ask Amanda” at finance@thedeuxsevresmonthly.fr Page 42


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Making Life (and water) a Little Less Hard OF  ALL  the  words  which  strike  terror  into  the  hearts  of  those  living  the   dream   in   France,  bureaucracy,  bindweed   and  limescale  must   be   in   everyone’s  top  ten. Many  householders  get  through  a  kettle  or   coffee  machine  every  18   months,  making  that  morning  cuppa  a  costly  experience.      Worse  still,   limescale  causes  unseen  damage   to   pipes,  taps   and   water   heaters,   with   a  replacement  heater  costing  anything  from  200€.  More   than   65%  of   households  in  France  (and   a  similar  figure  in  the  UK)   suffer   from   limescale  problems  from  hard   water.     When  your  corner   shop   sells  hydrochloric  acid  by  the  gallon,  you  know  you  have  a  problem! The  Cyane  range  of  water  conditioners  has  been  launched  onto  the   French   market   as   a   sensible   and   cost-­‐effective   alternative   to   traditional   water   softeners,  with   no   salts  or   chemicals  having  to  be   added  to  the  system.     Cyane,  a  small  computerised  device,  creates  an   electromagnetic  field  around  the  main  inlet  pipe,  keeping  the  calcium   and   magnesium   in   suspension,  but   preventing   the   minerals   from   adhering  to  pipes  and  appliances.    Because  of  the  way  it  operates,  the   water  retains  health  benefits  and  is  drinkable  straight  from  the  tap. Frances  Bourne  of  Right  Boxes  Ltd,  the  exclusive  distributor  for  France   through  www.touteau.com,  says:    “The  idea  came  about  because  our   then  holiday  home  in  Poitou-­‐Charentes  suffered  from  very  hard  water   and  the  time  we  were  in  France  was  spent   scrubbing  like  mad,  trying   to  keep   taps  and   surfaces  clean.     We  saw  a  water   conditioner  and   decided  to  develop   one  for  the  French  market.     After  a  few  years  on   test,   we   have   launched   a   complete   range.   Now   we   are   full-­‐time   residents,  we  would  not  be  without  one!” Cyane  uses  a   high-­‐frequency  switched-­‐polarity  magnetic   field   which   influences  the  charge  of  calcium  ions,  causing  them  to  repel  rather   than   attract   each   other,   preventing  them  from  sticking   together.   The   technology   is   used  by  the   likes  of  NASA  and   the   US   Coastguard   for   the   same   purpose.     And  prior   to   l a u n c h   t h e   d e v i c e   h a s   undergone   independent   laboratory   trials   at   a   British   university.

End

Frances   adds:   “When   money   is   tight   or   you   are   carrying   out   renovation   projects,   the   last   thing   you   want   is   to   keep   spending   money  on  electrical   appliances  and  plumbing,  so  the  installation   of   this  water  conditioner  will  really  help  to  keep   unnecessary  household   expense  down”. A   simple   DIY   installation,   four   sizes   of   Cyane   electronic   water   conditioners   are   available,  depending   on   the   size   of   the   property,   number  of  bathrooms,  toilets  and  appliances.    This  includes  a  larger   heavy   duty   model   suitable   for   swimming   pools   and   hot   tubs,  or   commercial   applications.   Installation   instructions   are   supplied   in   French  and  English. Cyane   is   named   after   a   fresh   water   nymph   (Naiad),   in   Greek   mythology,  who  lived  in  a  spring  in  the  Sicilian  town  of  Syracuse. The  Cyane  range  can  be  purchased  online  from  www.touteau.com

Contact:    Frances  Bourne  on  +33  (0)9  70  46  97  17  or   +44  (0)  20  3239  7320  ~  Email:  direct@touteau.com

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Sentinel  Security  Systems  is  a  small,  family  business  operating  in   the   West   Midlands   and   it's   founder   John   Flynn   has   been   providing   security  services  in  the  UK   for  over   30  years.    The  company  is  now   expanding  to  France.     With   the   expertise   of   the  company  behind   them,  Kate   and   Keith   Selwood   are  able   to   offer   the   same   quality   service   provided   in   the   UK.     They  have   lived   in   Deux-­‐Sèvres   for   almost   nine   years.     Keith   has   a   wealth   of   experience   in   the   electronics  and  installation  and  commissioning  of  computer   systems.   Kate's  experience  is  in  administration. Why  do  you  need  an  alarm  system? Figures  published   recently  by   the   crime   statistics   director   show  an   increase  in  burglaries  of  70%  in  rural  areas  over  the  past  five  years.

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We  know  only  too   well   what   an  unpleasant   experience  it   is   being   burgled;  before  we   moved   here  permanently  our   house  in   France   was  broken  into  four  times.    We  also   know  that  even  comprehensive   insurance  can  leave  you  out  of  pocket  by  thousands.       We   offer   reasonably   priced   wireless  systems  that  will  detect  an   intruder   in   your   home,   sound   an   external   alarm  and  inform   you   via   a   telephone   message,   or   SMS,   if   the   system   has   been   triggered.     This  system  can  work  hand  in  hand   with  a  CCTV  system  whereby  your   home   can   be   viewed   via   the   internet  or  Smartphone. In  a   nutshell  this  technology  allows  us  to  view  our  property  in  real   time  via  the  internet  from  anywhere  in  the  world  and  for  a  relatively   small   cost.     The  alarm  system  is  simple  to  use  with  a  key  fob  and  can   also  be  checked,  activated  and  deactivated  remotely. We  offer   a  free  on  site   survey,   advice  and   quotations   within   Deux-­‐Sévres   and   adjoining  departments. There   are   a   number   of   payment   options,   including  an  equipment  leasing  service,  which   makes  it  affordable  even  on  a  small  budget.

Contact  Kate  or  Keith  Selwood  on  05  49  09  77  47   or  by  email:  selwood@cc-­‐parthenay.fr

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Caring for those who care for France We   all   need   good   neighbours   –   and   the   network   in   Poitou-­‐ Charentes   of  ‘Les   Bons   Voisins’  has  increased   to  include   Paul  and   Hazel  Murphy  based  in  79340,  Les  Forges. Since   2002   the   network  founded   in   southern  Brittany  has   spread   across  France.     With  the  LBV  Group   you  can  buy  a  property,  obtain   planning   permissions   if   necessary,   and   maintain   or   let   it   all   at   a   distance  through   people   you   can   trust   who   have   more   than   ten   years  of  experience  helping  owners  in  France.

artisans   to   undertake  the   work.     They   have   many   local   contacts   with   whom  they  work  on  behalf   of  their  clients,  ensuring  the  high   standards   of   professional   service   expected   of   ‘Les   Bons   Voisins’.     The  fact  that   Hazel  is   a  fluent   French  speaker   and   Paul   has  a  high   level   of  practical  skills,  means   that   whatever   your   issue,  they  can   help. Don’t  hesitate  to  contact   them  for  a  friendly  initial  chat  –  without   obligation!

Paul   and   Hazel,   who   had   always   planned   to   undertake   property   management  when  they   made  their   move  to  France,  realised   that   by  joining   this  high   profile  professional  network  they  would  make   themselves  more  easily  available  to   second   home   owners  in  their   chosen   corner   of   France.     They  know  from   their   own   experience   before   they   came   to   live   in   France   full   time,   that   long   distance   ownership   can   be   stressful   and   whether   a   problem   is   administrative   (EDF   bills   estimated   incorrectly)   or   practical   (you   need   someone   to   supervise   the   installation   of   that   swimming   pool!)   by   acting   on   the   owners  behalf,   they   can   take   away   that   strain. Where   they  are   not   able  to   actually   undertake   work   themselves   (they  don’t  pretend  to  be  builders   for  example),  they  can  organise  

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THE DEUX-SÈVRES MONTHLY

Sunny Outlook for French Property by  Trevor  Leggett,  Chief  Executive Market Last   month  saw  both  the  first   day  of   Spring  and  a   budget   which   was  great  news  for  UK  homeowners. The  onset  of  Spring  in  France  has  traditionally  been  the  time   that   international   buyers  reappear  looking  to  snap  up  a  bargain.     2013   is   no   exception   and   our   agents   are   reporting  increased   activity,   both  in  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  &  right  across  the  country.      The  penny  (or   centime)   seems   to   have   finally   dropped   that   homeowners   and   agents   should   price   sensibly   and   we   are   seeing   some   terrific   bargains  being  snapped  up  by  clients.    We  have  seen  a  31%  growth   in   sales   over   this   time   last   year   and   our   call-­‐centre   team   are   reporting  an  increase  in  viewings  booked  since  the  onset  of  Spring. Perhaps  the  fact  that   the  weather  in  the  UK  has  been  so  poor   this   winter   has   also   added   to   the   increase   in   demand   from   British   buyers   who   have   brought   forward   their   plans   to   find   a   dream   home  in  the  sun. Watching   the   news   coming   out   of   the   UK   over   the   winter,   it   appears  as  though  they  have  had  some  terrible  weather.       Actually   the  winter  average  of  3.3˚C  is  pretty  standard  and  it  has  only  been   marginally  wetter  (104%)   than  usual,  in  addition  they  have  had   5%   more  sunshine  than  on  average! This  prompted  us  to  compare  the  UK  average  hours  of  sunshine  for   the  last  four  months  (215  hours)   with  our  nearest   weather  station   in  Bordeaux  (392  hours)   -­‐   the  significance   of   these   figures  is   that   international   investors   often   quote   climate   as   one   of   the   most   important  factors   when  choosing  a  destination.   This  is  intensified   by  the   24  hour   "news  culture"  we   now  live   in   where  pictures   of   people   adversely  affected  by   snow  and   rain   are   omnipresent  on   our  TV  and  computer  screens.     End

The  fact  that  you   can  gain  such  a  dramatic   increase  in  sunny  days   with   what   is   a   relatively  short   hop   across   the   channel   makes   a   property  in  France  seem  even  more  desirable  to  UK  buyers.     The   budget   that  George   Osborne  announced  a  few   weeks   ago   is   also  likely  to  indirectly  help  stimulate  demand  too.       The  UK  media   has   dubbed   it   a   "budget   for   homeowners"   with   a   range   of   measures   announced   under   the   ‘Help   to   Buy’   scheme   aimed   at   stimulating  the   housing   market.     The   government   is  supporting   £130bn  of  mortgages  over  three  years  and   if  confidence  returns  to   the  UK   market   then   this  spills   over   into  overseas   holiday  homes   too.     With  so   many  purchasers  looking  for   a   mixture   of  lifestyle   &   investment   returns,  we  think  that  France  (and  perhaps   the  Deux-­‐ Sèvres)  is  ideally  placed  to  profit. It's  clear  that  bargains  are  to  be  had  across  all  price  ranges  at   the   moment  and  let’s  face  it,  the  Deux-­‐Sèvres  has  plenty  of  well  priced   property  to  choose  from.

"

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Leggett  Immobilier  is  one  of  the  leading  estate  agents  in  France.   You  can  access  all  their  local  property  listings  and  articles  at www.frenchestateagents.com/poitou-­‐charentes-­‐property.

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The Deux-Sèvres Monthly - May 2013