So here we are Chateau Gioux – It felt like this was never going to happen – we jumped through many hoops to get to this point and even up to a few weeks ago I was still anxiously asking Nige – “do you think we can get these things sorted ?  Will we be able to raise the money in time? “

All my adult life I have loved France, travelling many times on holiday with my three young children, from Brittany in the north, the Vendee, Bordeaux, Cognac, The Loire Valley, to St Tropez in the south, with a bit of Burgundy in the middle, always dreaming of French life but never actually thinking it would happen to me. Meanwhile Nige ( in another life) had lived in the Allier Dept for four years in the 1990’s as a dairy farmer before returning to the UK.

Funny how all those years later (2014) we should get together and find we had a mutual love for all things French ! 

Nigels mum is also a great Francophile and as such I became an ally to her in her desire for a property over here. She and Jim had visited the area over many years and knew it well and so the search began . Nigel eventually found(on ebay) a lovely old house in St Moreil, between Bourganeuf and St Leonard de Noblat, and so to cut a very long story short the deal was done !

France, here we come

Nigel and I found ourselves over here more and more and after many hours of discussions we decided to look for a property for ourselves, to run as a Chambres d’hote (b and b) business, which was a necessity in order for us to afford to live here. Nige had reassessed his life after a health scare and I had a yearning to be self-employed once more so we took every opportunity each time we were over to look at property – and believe me we looked at all sorts from modern to ancient and dilapidated ! Nige had seen chateau Gioux on an estate agents’ facebook page whilst over here without me and had requested a viewing despite the price tag being well out of our reach . He immediately loved it and sent pictures to me which I shelved under the “unattainable”, however fate played its part and I still firmly believe that this old place had taken a fancy to us as after an offer we had put in on an old mill fell through we returned home to find that for one week only the Chateau was reduced in price by E100,000 bringing it down to the limit of our budget. We of course offered immediately and it was accepted. I was so overwhelmed at this stage and still couldn’t believe it might happen, but happen it did and 6 months later we arrived with a trailer of furniture and a car stuffed with dogs and a cat and our life here in France began.

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