Welcome to our website
Welcome: We started this website in 2007 shortly after moving to France because we wanted to share our experience with friends and family and to introduce them to life in Southern Burgundy and to our home and adopted village.
Bienvenue: Nous avons commencé ce site en 2007 peu de temps après notre arrivée en France car nous voulions partager notre expérience avec nos amis et la famille afin de leur faire découvrir la vie en Bourgogne du Sud, notre maison et notre village d’adoption.
Willkommen: Wir haben diese Website im Jahr 2007 ins Leben gerufen, kurz nach unserem Umzug nach Frankreich, weil wir unsere Erfahrungen mit Freunden und Familie teilen und sie dem Leben im südlichen Burgund und unserem Haus und unserem Dorf vorstellen wollte.
Its been quite a task but, helped by some miserable weather, we have populate all twelve pages of this new site. Jon has also managed to publish twenty of our favourite recipes under the Food and Drink section. We will continue to check and fine-tune the content while keeping it up to date. If you come across any errors, omissions or inaccuracies, we will welcome your input.
We apologise to our French and other international friends, for the site now being entirely in English, (apart from the introduction above). There are many translation engines on the internet, which can help, but we recommend ‘DeepL’. This is a link directly to the free version for you to try. Visitors please remember that this is a strictly ‘non commercial’ website.
A few local views (and a couple of the rustics)
Barbara and Jon
Taking a rest in medieval hill village of BRANCION. In the valley below (looking over Barbara's right shoulder) is our own little village of Champagny-sous-Uexlles
The River Saône at Chalon
Looking acros to the island
Our old Apple Tree
Its last blossom during spring 2020
A life-changing decision:
When we first moved to our family home in Essex it was a quiet rural spot, four houses and the Old Rectory just on the edge of a market town. But one Easter weekend (2005) we had been working in our garden. All that we could hear was the constant drone of the traffic on the main road and rattle of the railway. The trees often acted as a sound barrier but they were not in full leaf yet, but nothing could muffle the constant sound of the screeching sirens use by the emergency services, Police, Fire or Ambulance they all sound the same. In the evening we listened to the beep beep beep of the trucks and machines working the gravel pit some half a mile across the fields. This got us thinking!
There were many things that triggered our move to France. Although our daughters were starting their lives away from home, we found the we needed better accommodation for Barbara’s disabled mother who was living with us. We started to look for property in rural areas further away from London but prices were just as high and factoring in any renovation costs would see our mortgage increase rather than be paid off. Another factor was the prospect of a telephone mast being installed on farmland about 20 meters from our back door!
All things considered the South East of England was no longer where we wanted or indeed, needed to live. While trawling the internet for our new home, we came upon a site offering properties in Burgundy and the rest, as they say, is history.
We quickly realised that, with family still in the UK and in anticipation of travel too and fro, we needed to be within a reasonable day’s drive of south-east England. We had visited the Beaujolais area which seemed to be the limit, so being a little further north would be good.
The areas around Mâcon and the Saône valley were good, midway between Calais and the South of France and with access to other central European countries where we had friends and family. This was important as Barbara’s brothers, who lived in Germany, could more easily visit their elderly mother who was very much a key factor in the move.
Of course the wine was good and the warm climate better for our ageing joints so we quickly found a property which we could occupy immediately and adapt to our needs over not too long a time.
Promoting our village, Southern Burgundy and France
And why we have this website.
Shortly after moving to France in 2007, we were obliged to change all our private and business e-mail arrangements. We signed-up with the UK based company ‘Fasthosts’ and have used their ISP service ever since. As part of their package we were able to register our own domain name and build a basic website from their template.
Our initial idea was to keep friends and family back in the UK (and around the world) up to date with our life in France. The website has undergone annual up-dates and several major re-builds over the years. Since 2016 we had been using it partly to promote our Gîte and of course the Burgundian countryside.
The uncertainties of the Covid pandemic and our age, have forced us to reconsider the viability of running a Gîte. Its still available to friends, family and neighbours, but we wanted to continue to support for our village and the local attractions. This all triggered our 2021 up-date using new software (so we apologise for all the mistakes)!