I have a friend who owns a village house in France. It’s way down in the south, near the spanish border in fact and they bought it the other year, having sold their previous rambling farm house in the next village along. From when they first embarked on this adventure en francaise, they have embraced everything they could about the joy of owning a french home. They used local labour for all the work to bring the property into this century – the plaster work is fantastic and of course, word gets around that the new folk at willing to use local. It helped them to make many friends and they are well respected. The country life suits them – they live six months there and the rest here in a village or at their other place – a smart apartment in London’s dockside. Knowing how to adapt to each location; how to furnish for the right setting and how to get the most out of suppliers in each location are talents my chum enjoyed by the bucketful!