New Year and our 25th Anniversary Year – 13 January 2018

More than forty members met to celebrate the New Year and our Anniversary Year at Chris R’s gîte, where a generous spread of buffet food, Galettes des Rois and an anniversary celebration cake was provided by the Committee and accompanied by Crémant d’Alsace.

Annette, our founder member, attended and was quizzed by many about the early days of the Association,before cutting the cake.

Members were able to browse a selection of earlier Newsletters, photographs and the archive of the records of the Association, which charts its activities and events from 1993.
Louise’s speech confirmed that the Association was going from strength to strength with an ever increasing variety of activities and interest groups.

Write up of the visit and photos courtesy of members.



Christmas Luncheon at Le Tourne Bride – 8th December 2017

We were blessed with a bright and breezy day for our much anticipated celebration lunch, although latecomers were greeted with a hail storm. The log fire was most welcome and so was an aperitif, which was followed by a continuous selection of delicious warm and cold canapés. Starters of terrine or baked salmon were equally tasteful, but all were upstaged by a wonderfully rich sauce that accompanied the duckling main course. Green vegetables were something of a scarcity, it seemed, but I kept spooning up the sauce by way of recompense. The gourmande sweet was politely proportioned, reflecting a French reserve rather than English Gluttony, which will need to wait until the 25th of the month. Service was prompt and the conversation was lively.

The raffle was competently fixed with the Committee members winning several of the prizes. The raffle raised the princely sum of 173 € and the auction, which included table decorations by Stevie, raised 109 €. Profits will go to our charity, Parentibus.


The Craft Group’s Christmas wreath was greatly admired and secured with a generous bid, apparently by a man from Belgium, although I believe it will stay in the country.

Write up of the visit and photos courtesy of members.


Quiz and Buffet Lunch -18th November 2017

Quiz and Buffet Lunch chez Catherine and Jacques C’est 31 personnes qui se sont réunies le samedi 18 novembre 2017, chez Catherine et Jacques à Roncey à l’occasion du Quiz and Buffet Lunch.





Un accueil très chaleureux nous a été réservé par nos hôtes où un petit verre de l’amitié était servi. Un très joli et copieux buffet était dressé, où tous les participants ont pu apprécier les préparations culinaires des uns et des autres. En cette période de préfètes, les mince pies étaient bien évidemment à l’honneur. Une fois ce très bon déjeuner terminé, un quiz musical, basé sur de la musique française et anglaise ainsi qu’un questionnaire de culture gé- nérale nous ont été proposés par Dave et Louise Wilson. Des équipes étaient constituées et, chacun a fait appel à ses souvenirs et connaissances pour répondre le mieux possible. Après cette très sympathique et conviviale épreuve, chacun est reparti, non sans avoir remercié encore une fois Catherine et Jacques pour leur accueil.

Write up of the visit and photos courtesy of members.

The Last Walk of the Year along the River Soulles – 10th November 2017

The choice of route for November’s walk reflected the fact that autumn in Normandy can often be wet. Starting at the Yeti bowling and ice rink in Coutances, we followed the gentle contours of La Soulles river valley as we headed towards our destination, the ruined bridge at Pont de la Roque. Despite starting grey and slightly coldish, the morning brightened and, with the temperature rising, jackets and raincoats were carried rather than worn. The well constructed path proved fit for purpose, being solid and dry underfoot, even though the surrounding fields held a great deal of surface water. As we strolled by old river mill buildings, now redundant and silent, the many cows and horses happily ignored us and continued grazing. The path also seems popular with both leisure and more sporting runners, and we saw some of the more serious runners again as they returned apace to Coutances.

Eventually the path emerged onto the road near Pont de la Roque and very shortly we had arrived at the stone bridge.

We spent several minutes inspecting the three adjoining, destroyed arches and reading the commemorative plaques to the Allied servicemen who lost their lives when the bridge was bombed and then captured in the months of June and July 1944. The stone bridge dates from 1852 apparently replacing a wooden structure which existed before. A “Bailey” bridge was erected at the end of July 1944 and the current modern road bridge inaugurated in 1967.

We rounded off a sociable morning at La Taverne du Parvis, opposite the cathedral in Coutances, where members unable to attend the walk joined us for lunch.

Write up of the visit and photos courtesy of members.