August 16, 2022


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Who are the English of Charente? [Série d’été]

Who are the English of Charente? [Série d’été]

In the parking lot of this store, which raises funds for animal charities…

In the parking lot of this store, which donates funds raised to animal charities, there are several cars with right-hand steering wheels. This place is the tabernacle of His Majesty’s subjects, and this is quickly understood upon entering the store. Most are retired, as are the majority of English people living in Sarande. The British community is also huge among expats in our industry.

“Fall in Love” for Sarande

At the charity’s checkout, Anna Woodfold, one of the association’s managers, alternates between Shakespeare’s language and Moliere’s with ease. But most of the customers are British. Here, the association works on the principle of Emmaus. Donation collection: Ceramics, books in English, household items, clothes and reselling them to raise funds.

In the book section, John Pennington, 85, conscientiously arranges books. He volunteers here and lives in Benest. He arrived in Sarande in 1995 and never left. What does he like in the field? “ Quality of life, location… For many of his British neighbors and friends who had settled in the area, he became a sort of reference. “I give them bureaucracy, taxes… They call me to translate. » He chose to assimilate and have lunch with his French neighbors on Sundays to enrich his grammar and vocabulary. It’s not for everyone. “ Adults keep to themselves and a large number don’t make any effort, which is a bit sad for them. They are still happy…”, analyzes Roognock-based property developer Trevor Leggett.

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Not Richard Horan, 64, would say the opposite. The former banker and chief financial officer, who lives near London, is also a volunteer at the Trust. Equipment Division. He is a “ fall in love “, for Charente. “ The landscape, the people, the peace… He has been living here for 32 years. He immediately learned French: At least I can point the firemen in the direction of my house! » Based in Nieuil, he is not the only Briton in the field. “Between Newell and Chuvaux, there were nine English proprietors. We called it the Englishmen’s Path. Fittingly, Richard Horan was especially vice-chairman of the Newell Festival Committee. At Saint-Claude, he operates “ Spokesperson “To the British, to the Union” Sports and Leisure”.

John Pennington has lived in Benest since 1995.

Photo by Renaud Joubert

In the same vein, Helen is part of the Confolence Festival Committee. Stella Buckle, who lives in Isle-Jourdain, Vienna, is involved in MJC and the choir. “We encourage our English friends to speak French ! “, she says. His is flawless.” Adults have a lot of problems with French “, notes Trevor Leggett. “ The younger one gets there, integrates and makes friends.

Between Nieul and Suaux there are nine English franchises. It was called the British route.

But whether they speak our language or not, everyone is mesmerizing “Lifestyle Charenteis, according to Stella Buckle. “ Slow Lifestyle », stops Helen between two sips of tea. peaceful “ Wonderful, peaceful ! Ken, a charity shop volunteer, sums it up. He lives in Brillac and never saw his way back across the Channel. “ No way! »

Celebrated the Anzac Queen’s Day

On June 26, Hope Association celebrated Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee, her 70-year reign, in front of the Foundation’s premises. The event brought together a hundred British people from Sarande Limousin and beyond. Participants shared a “ploughman’s meal” served in English pubs and sang standard English songs. The event was even listed in the list of Jubilees published by the British Government! Only five such festivals are organized in France.